Thursday, May 17, 2012

Idiot Managers: You Know the Type

I have said it before and I’ll say it again: I’m so, so glad I work at home now.

In my experience, managers are complete drooling idiots. They bend rules when it suits them, but not when it suits the customer. They demand timeliness, cleanliness, responsibility and loads of effort, but only pay minimum wage. I have had many, many jobs, and very rarely does a manager know what the hell they are doing.

I know people. I’m a people guy. The majority of managers I have dealt with aren’t. They are bosses, not people lovers. And that’s fine, until these morons have to deal with the public. They drop the ball every time.

Once I worked at an auto-parts store. A guy came in who had bought an alternator for his old Ranchero earlier that day, before I signed on for my shift. He hadn’t realized until he’d already junked his old one that the new (see: refurbished) units don’t come with any hardware. He literally had no nuts/bolts to attach his wires to.

The poor man was greasy, he was tired and hot (SoCal summers get to be 110º very easily), and he was frustrated beyond belief. Well, wouldn’t you be?

What did I do? I marched right back to the parts area, grabbed an alternator and yanked the hardware off of it. I then slipped them across the counter and told him to have a nice day.

The look on his face was priceless. Nobody is used to someone actually taking care of them: they are used to being given the runaround about store policy, how employees wish they could help further, how sorry they were they couldn’t do more. Not me. You need hardware, you get hardware. Didn’t hurt the place a bit.

Guy brought me back a six-pack of beer and said he was a customer for life.

That, friends and neighbors, is customer service. I didn’t steal, I didn’t bend the rules too badly, and I didn’t commit a cardinal sin. I helped a guy out who, in my eyes, was a total victim of penny-pinching moronic methods.

The management jumped all over me for that trick, and I mean pretty badly. Apparently, they weren’t really worried about customers being happy. In fact, I know they weren’t. In the end, it’s each man for himself no matter what kind of “teamwork” mentality they try to instill. 

Management? Idiots.


Anonymous said...

I know exactly what you're talking about Derek. I worked in childcare during high school and stuck my neck out when I realized we were putting the kids in a position where they could be spied on by perverts. My reward for doing my job? I got fired soon after for incompetence. This when another councilor was literally sleeping on the job without any disciplinary action taken against him.

Derek Odom said...

Ack! All too familiar. I've even seen racially biased managers who 'watched out for their own', and very obviously. I really hope I never have to clock in again. :P

URWelcome said...

Heh, well what I have found in my experience is there are three types of managers, and the best way to categorize them are by age, years of experience, and salary.

Type 1 - Managers that start at minimum wage, have no experience in anything, and work their way up.

These people have no experience in anything, including life. They are usually between 19 and 22 years old (Older if they are lazy, stupid, or dysfunctional in some other way). They usually have 6 months to one year experience in their current job, and are then promoted because the old manager quit. They are given around a 50 cent to a dollar an hour raise and a different colored shirt. The problem you are talking about is 100% about these people. They don't know how to treat their customers, or their employees. Mostly because they are barely out of adolescence themselves.

Type 2 - Managers that have about 3 or 4 years experience (or possibly a degree) and make 3 or 4 dollars an hour more than their employees.

These managers know how to treat their customers, which is usually caused by a dream of owning their own business doing the same thing in the future. They are between 23 and 27 years old and have learned how to have manners even if they dislike the person they are dealing with. What they lack is the ability to treat their employees with any respect. They haven't learned that quality employees are needed in the big picture, and therefore all of the quality employees quit on them, and they are left with trash (which they treat like trash).

Type 3 - Managers that have 15+ years experience, and make 20+ dollars an hour more than their employees.

These types have been around the block many, many times. They are at LEAST 35 years old, but usually 40+. They have learned all the life lessons needed to know how to treat customers and employees respectfully. They know that a single dirty look from them to an employee will instantly cause a decline in that employees performance. They end every conversation with with a smile. These people have "figured it out". Granted they almost never deal with the customers themselves anymore, but if they do, the customer usually gets some sort of extra or freebee if they are upset at even the slightest detail. They buy their employees lunch once in a while, with nothing expected in return other than pride in their work. Oh, and the most important part in my book, they say please and thank you to the people on their payroll.

So like I said, age, years of experience and salary are what make up a good manager. There are a lot of crappy ones for sure, just like there are a lot of crappy jobs (they usually go hand in hand). But to say that "managers are idiots" isn't quite hitting the mark. Some of them have indeed "figured it out".

Derek Odom said...

Those are very good and valid representations, URWelcome! And yes, of course I don't mean ALL managers, but some of them are really bad. :D