Monday, May 11, 2009


I can't stand people who tread on you in the workplace. I've had it happen to me, the powermongers who think they can speak to you roughly, treat you like shit and make you feel guilty or incompetent for the smallest misdemeanour. No, I'm not talking about my employers.

We've had an event today that is both uncomfortable, upsetting and can't be spoken about on the blog. An employer (not mine) who is unscrupulous, unprincipled and makes the innocent feel guilty. Adam had it last year working for a landscaping company with promises made that never eventuated. Taken advantage of by being promised the world and paid peanuts - he left and his employer who then refused to pay him the week's pay owing because he'd used his machinery to practice his skills - after Adam left, he charged him for use of said machinery out of spite and pursuing it through the courts would have been exorbitant. Yes we did go through the Ombudsman and the District Small Claims Tribunal to try to exact the $600 wage but refusal on the other side meant a possible long court battle that we weren't prepared to take on. He received a cheque for $80 less the fee for working with the bob cat. Bastard.

ClareBear too was promised bonuses, high tech computers, skill sets, advancement but it was all smoke and mirrors and tonight, my sweet is feeling guilty and angry and upset because a very unscrupulous employer has pointed the bone just one week after she resigned. And yes, she made a mistake by posting the work she'd done for that particular company on her website as folio pieces. She broke the rules of intellectual property and has learned a harsh lesson. I understand that ignorance is no defense but there was little harm in it given that the proprietor of the business is being far less scrupulous, actually acting illegally in relation to intellectual property. She was asked to leave, pack her brown box and never come back. For daring to do little more than establish a business of her own in the last week of her notice.

We'll get over it because we're made of strong mettle and this particular employer is knee-deep in scandal and deceit. But I can't believe how many greedy, self aggrandizing corrupt shitbags there are out there that are capable of making you feel miserable because you won't do their bidding. Ripping off their clients under false pretenses. Making themselves to be something completely opposite to what they really are. Operating illegally or just within an inch of the law . .treating their staff like lackeys . .swearing at them in the workplace or worse, ignoring them completely, having tantrums over personal issues, not honouring their employment promises . . Where has professionalism gone?

Small business needs to wake up and start running like a business. If you're unhappy with an employee, you have a review and state your case not scream like a banshee and have a hissy fit. You need to negotiate and discuss calmly any grievances, not stamp your foot and behave like a petulant toddler. If you make agreements upon employment, you should honour them not change the rules half way through. If you're pleased with an employee, yes, bring them into the office and tell them that you value their work and their contribution not put further demands outside their area of expertise in order for them to earn a wage increase. I am at my wit's end at the lack of honesty, communication, clarity and loyalty in the workplace.

Apologies for being so cryptic but there are issues here I can't discuss in a public forum but need to get off my chest. My father's mantra was "Be Nice" . . this seems increasingly difficult in the workplace where many of us spend 30% of our lives. It's not all about you . .or 'mine'. Your employees are your greatest investment and if chosen carefully will bring you profitability, success and fortune. Look after your workers peeps or die trying.

20 comments:

Brian Miller said...

nice rant. great closing line. did i see on twitter you are a finalist for a new job?

Baino said...

Man you're speedy! Only just posted. Yeh well . .I'm mad as hell and not gonna take it any more. Shitbags.
Yep, second interview tomorrow, one of two remaining candidates I think. So say a prayer for me. I don't believe in that myself but any positive energy is good energy! Cheers chief!

Candie Bracci said...

Hi Baino,

They might get away with all those craps for a while but what they don't know is that people like that are already dead!And what can I say,what goes around comes around.

Have a nice day my sweet Baino!

nick said...

Sorry to hear about Clare's unfortunate experience. Employers do make outrageous promises sometimes. I once worked for a bookshop where I was assured they were about to build a brand new purpose-built bookshop instead of the existing shabby, scruffy one. Nine years on the old bookshop is still there.

And you know about my experience last autumn when I was recruited for one job and given a completely different one when I started work.

There are plenty of unscrupulous, devious employers out there. Hope you manage to find an honourable one.

laughingwolf said...

unfortunately a and c learned the hard way to get EVERYTHING in writing, including job descriptions and requirements, signed by the boss! GRRRRRRR on those shitbags!

seems many small 'businesses' are only about ripping off folks, and running to the bank with their ill-begotten gains :(

hope you get that job, baino!

Ronda Laveen said...

I agree with everything in your rant and it is not just small business where it is occuring. But there is an extreme lack of professionalism in many small businesses. At my spa, the owner does all of those things: stomps, hissy fits, and might I add wailing and cying ...loudly...through the entire, supposedly, serene spa.

The term "small business" is meant to infer the size of the company, not the size of behavior.

kj said...

baino, i've been a small business owner for most of my career and i've made plenty of mistakes. but i've learned over the years to treat employees and colleagues (and customers)with respect and the upmost fairness. it's a small world in reality and you pay the price one way or another when you act in anger, indifference or revenge.

i try to live by this creed in both personal and professional relationships:

Never cut what can be untied.

sorry for a lousy day for a lousy reason. don't forget you guys have one another...i know you won't

love
kj

Kath Lockett said...

Karma, Baino, Karma. It does win out, eventually, as I've been discovering this week. It will do the same for you, DrummerBoy and Clare Bear, I promise.

Renee said...

Getting it out is good for the soul.

What you have described is disgraceful.

Love Renee xoxo

Megan said...

Argh! Doesn't it drive you nuts? My boss is a bit of that type - yelling and stomping about - but we put up with it because he will go to the wall for us with the higher-ups over in Corporate if they start trying to throw their weight around in his branch...

subtorp77 said...

I remember a manager brought in to run the store( after a buy-out ). I won't go into details, but it ended in a lot of good workers ( like myself and 85% of the others ), leaving. If I feel threatened or no longer like my job, I leave. Employers shouldn't play effing mind games with their "associates". And a little recognition goes a long way. I would expect smaller businesses to relise this. We all know the big companies could care less. To them we're just temporary help, no matter what.

Moon said...

People are shits and bullies... sadly, some bullies get into management or own their own business, and they feel they can bully even more..... they must have very small cocks !

Karma will get them, I firmly believe what goes around, comes around ....

e said...

Hi Baino,

Sorry for all the crap you mentioned! I hope A and C can find ethical bosses and that you get that job you are interviewing for.

On an unrelated subject, the doc prescribed a nice compounded cream for the wrist problem, more intense than the Voltarin, but same idea. Thanks for the information as I was able to ask about it and get this.

River said...

I felt a litle ripped off too when I applied for a position in a large laundry company. I was shown around the facility, saw women putting sheets and tablecloths through a large roller iron, others folding the freshly ironed items etc. I could start tomorrow. All seemed fine. Next day at 7am, I was placed in the sorting area, which I hadn't been shown the day before. Literally truck loads of filthy linens, (we're talking spilled food, blood, vomit and worse), from hospitals and restaurants, were thrown into the sorting area onto a large conveyor belt and we sorted. And we sorted, sorted, sorted, for hours. That stuff was heavy and stinky. At the end of the day I went home and cried. Never went back. Not even to collect the wage I'd earned that day.

Baino said...

Candie, I think they're on their last legs and although Clare was ostensibly in the wrong, she ended up doing the right thing and deleting the offending pics from her site.

I know Nick. It's even worse when a Charity fudges the numbers just to keep up appearances. You'd expect better wouldn't you?

Wuffa, Clare wasn't without fault. She did breach copyright and it was clear in her employment contract. What was so unscrupulous was the employer doing it to others all the time and denying it and the absolute tantrum that lead to Clare's departure. They are a dodgy business and we suspect will fold within the month.

Oh Ronda! I can't imagine having my nice massage with Enya in the background and a banshee driving out the evil! Poor form!

kj I love that 'never cut what can be untied'. . .I'm stealing it!

Kath I'm beginning to wonder. Seriously, we're not the happless fools we might seem on this blog but we're due some good karma and soon!

Renee . .small fry but upsetting nonetheless. We've spent today setting up the web business . .stay tuned (If only she could pay me!)

Megan at least he defends you but I really think if I went round the office ranting and raving like a wild thing it would all be put down to PMS!

Subby, I don't know what you do for a living but nobody, absolutely nobody deserves to be abused in the workplace and here, small business are exempt from so many recriminations by Fair Trading that it isn't funny. I am very fortunate that my company obliged and payed me redundancy. Companies with fewer than 15 employees are not obliged to do so!

Moon . . yer a tonic my man! Except it was a woman so I guess she's got a small . ...

e we are survivors. Just getting a bit sick of surviving but we're fine by many other standards. So happy you're getting some relief. I thought Voltarin might not be strong enough but you can get it (and similar) in tablet form on script. Isn't the blogworld great! Leads to many opportunities. Take it easy on those joints girl! (my knee is killing me today)

River, I can't blame you. I guess someone has to do that work but don't be deceptive when you're advertising it. Tell it like it is. God, I'm not surprised you walked out on it. I couldn't handle that . .not yet.

Thanks everyone, Clare read your comments this morning and said 'your commenters are such lovely people', seriously, she was quite moved by the sweetness of sentiment as am I. You mean a lot to us.

jay said...

Ah, an old grievance of mine. I've been bullied by superiors in the workplace, and yes, it is a form of bullying. There are also incompetent 'managers' who seem to think it's fine to use fear and rudeness to run the place.

And baseless promises and abuse of good nature and willingness? Happens far, far too often. One of my sons is caught in the 'working for promises and air' trap right now, because it's a hard business to get into and they know it. He hasn't been paid for March yet. Just a few hundred pounds here and there to keep him clocking on. *Sigh*

Baino said...

Ah Jay that's not a good sign. We sometimes stick to these jobs hoping that things will right themselves but they rarely do. Clare just found out that her employer super hasn't been paid, she's unlikely to receive the last six day's pay or her annual leave entitlement . .tell him to walk away . .now!

i beati said...

can you get grants there?/E>G. to develop your own business..sandy

Ces said...

Ah! Those employers you described sound like bastards! They'll probably go under in a few years. That's bad karma for them if they treat people in an undignified and unkind manner.

I don't know of any business that became hugely successful by treating their employees disgracefully.

That is why our company is the biggest employer in the state, because we have a culture of caring. Every new employee goes through a "caring" orientation. We just don't tolerate obnoxious behavior.

Ces said...

I hope your loving family will come out of this ebb soon.