Sunday, June 03, 2007


So for the last few weeks, I've been looking at a change of profession and I applied to a certain business which isn't too far from where I live and I had an interesting experience in the process. For the sake of keeping myself out of trouble, I'll not name the business, and we'll just call the manager who I dealt with throughout the hiring process Doug. Also, for the sake of not trying to skew reality, I will first outline the facts, as nearly as I remember them and I will try to use quotes as often as possible. Please note that I am human, and as such, I may make mistakes, but I will do my best to stay true to reality as possible. Then after I report the facts, I'll share my opinions.

I've been a customer at this business for some months now, and about a month and a half ago I turned in my resume. It took some time for a spot to open up with adequate hours for me to consider taking the job, but late week before last (If I'm not mistaken it was Saturday the 26th) Doug told me he had a position opening up that had plenty of hours per week, and asked if I was interested; I said yes. So on Tuesday, I strolled in and Doug started talking seriously with me about what the job would entail and we drew up a tentative schedule and we ended our meeting with him saying that he needed to talk with the store owner before I was officially hired and that he would call me first thing the next morning. Wednesday morning came and went and my phone didn't ring, so later that day I went in and said "Hey, Doug, what happened to 'I'll call you in the morning'?"

To which he responded, "I got busy. Business is business. I still need to talk to the owner. What are you up to tonight?"

"Well, I was just gonna head home and play some video games with my brother in law"

"Okay, well don't go too far. Go home and play your games, I'll call you tonight after I talk with the owner."

With that I did exactly what I said I would, keeping my phone close expecting a call. Midnight came and with no activity from my phone, I went to bed at my usual time. Morning came and I saw that I had not missed any calls. This concerned me, so I made my way out to talk to Doug. when I got there I said to him, calmly, albeit in a tone that might be construed as accusatory (though that wasn't my intention), "Hey, this is twice you told me you'd call within a certain time frame, and twice you've failed to do so."

With that, Doug took me aside and said "Listen, I'm the boss here and you don't come in and yell at me. Business is business and sometimes we get busy and sometimes things don't get done. Anyway, my not calling you was sort of a test and you just failed. If this is the way you're gonna act, I don't want you working for me."

There is one more thing I should point out before I start ranting about how I feel, and that is that when I told him that he'd failed to call twice, there was a customer in the vicinity, and though I don't know if he was paying attention, it might have been better if I hadn't said anything in front of him, though I think the outcome would have been the same.

Now I get to express how I feel about this whole thing. I think the fact that Doug didn't want me to stand up to him is the sign of a douchebag manager. A doormat is something I certainly am not, and I would have reacted in the same manner toward anyone who treated me the way he did, I don't care if it's an authority figure, a peer or a subordinate (Something I find myself lacking at the moment ;).

It's a simple matter of courtesy to follow up when you tell someone that you'll do something. When you do follow up, you show people that that's what you expect from them. After all, why should I give you any reason to trust me if I can't trust you?

1 comment:

Jake said...

For what it's worth, I've also been dealing with Le...uh, I mean "Doug" for a few months now.

He's a nice guy to me because I'm a customer and that's his job. But I can say this: He's promised me phone calls three times, and never followed up. He's promised to put me in touch with friends who want my services (I mod Wiis), and nothing has come of it.

And maybe it's not his fault, but he managed to let the WaveBird controller I ordered get sold to someone else AFTER I had already paid for it.

Dude's a flake. He's a nice flake, and a good salesman. But none of this makes a good manager.

My idea of a test for a potential employee is to see if they're honest and consistent. Jeff was both here. Kudos, Jeff. Cheers to you failing his stupid test. Working for an ass is its very own special hell.