People Treat Us To Their Stories Of Malicious Compliance Revenge
17. Are You Sure You Want Me To Transfer The Call? Okay, But He Won't Give You The Best Outcome
“So I work in a call center for a major telecom operator (let’s call them MJ) in my country, now my job is quite simple and easy, call newly subscribed customers and ask them if the installation was done to their liking and if the contract is how they asked.
Now, this customer, let’s call them Maria. Maria is a new customer and is on my list to call. She got a pretty awesome package of service for a great price + a free 32-inch TV and 1 month of free service and free sports channels for 12 months, and I get to call her.
Me: Hi my name is OP. I am calling from MJ about your recent subscription to our service and it’s to make sure you are happy with the service.
Maria: Oh, hello, I am very happy, better than (insert major telecom number 2 here), but my daughters aren’t; they don’t have enough internet on their cellphones.
Me: Okay, let’s check your daughters’ cellphone plans. I see here both your daughters have 10 GB for normal navigation + 15 GB for social networks and 5 GB for YouTube and 5 GB for Netflix. Could you tell me where they are lacking internet?
Maria: I think it was social media.
Me: I see, your daughters were using around 1o GB of mobile data on WhatsApp and 5 GB on social media, so to make you even happier, I will apply 5 more GB free of charge for 24 months. Does that sound good?
Now, this extra 5 GB I am giving out for free is not company policy, but they gave my job a free-use policy to make the customer happy as long as it is responsible and doesn’t affect the value of the contract.
Maria: I don’t think 5 GB is enough; make it 20 GB.
Me: I am sorry, Miss. Maria, I am not able to do that. Using 15 GB in just 1 week for social media and Whatsapp is a bit much. What I can do if this is not to your liking is make both your daughters’ numbers unlimited mobile data for just 10 bucks extra a month for both phones as a special offer, does this sound better?
Now, this offer is by using the policy to make customers happy and for me to go to bed for the day and already cleared with my SPV if I could apply this offer.
Maria: I would like to pay for the same, but unlimited internet for 10 bucks sounds good for the happiness of my little angels.
Me: Alright, your contract has been changed and both of your daughters will have the new data plan activated in about an hour.
Maria: Sounds great, so how are you going to refund me for the time I haven’t had this contract?
Me: I am sorry, what refund? Your service is not working correctly?
Maria: It is, but before I hadn’t had unlimited and I had to listen to my daughters complain that they didn’t have internet on their cellphones, and I would like to have a refund on my first bill.
I was in shock by this so it took me a moment to get my lines in order.
Me: So your service was great, there wasn’t a problem with the service, and you want a refund for 1 week for a bad contract that wasn’t aligned with your use case?
At this point, I was going to give her 10 bucks just so I could go to bed and my work doesn’t pay extra hours even though we go over the work hours on regular basis, but we got bank hours to use when we miss work, so it evens out.
Maria: Don’t be silly, I want the whole month obviously.
Me: Miss Maria, that’s not possible; it was a high usage of mobile data from your daughters. The company provided the service, and it was in the contract.
Maria: Well, if you can’t find it to make me happy about this request, I am afraid I will have to cancel your contract.
Me: Miss Maria, just to make sure, you want to cancel your contract with our company because we won’t give you a free month of service although you already have 1 month free?
Maria: That is correct, doesn’t you SPV say the customer is always right?
Me: I am sorry Miss Maria, I can’t give you another free month on top of your already free month for the reason that we gave the service that you contacted.
Do you still wish to cancel your service?
Maria: Yes I am, also I would like your name and company ID to make a complaint about you being so bad with customers.
Me: I will connect your call with the department of cancelation, and my name is OP.
As for the company ID, I can’t provide that information as it has private info, I am sorry.
Maria: I want your company ID before you transfer the call.
Me: I am sorry; my company ID can’t be provided to customers. To make a complaint, only the name and time of the call are needed to make the complaint to the correct person.
It states on our website.
Maria: Just transfer the call. Your colleague will comply with my request, you are good for nothing.
Me: I am going to transfer the call.
The call was transferred, and my colleague was having nothing of it and just started canceling the contract before talking to the customer.
I read the internal report on the situation as there was a formal complaint. The action of both me and my colleague was fine, but I should have not offered unlimited internet for 5 bucks for each phone but should have been 6 bucks.
The contract was canceled, Miss Maria lost all offers, and best of all, the client had to pay 500 bucks for an early termination fee and 320 bucks for installation of service.”
16. Now You Want Us To Work From Home? You Told Me I Never Could
“So I’ve been at my place of work (very large corporation) for five years now and before I started I gave them the lowdown on my disabilities and yes, I will have more sick days than most, but I made clear from before the start and throughout that some days I won’t be well enough to travel to the office but will be well enough to work from home.
Due to the business ops, all staff is provided a laptop which you can plug in at any desk or work remotely on visits or even at home!
My managers didn’t trust people to do work from home and when it inevitably happened a few months in I let them know I am up for doing my work as usual, no problem, but I won’t be able to physically commute to the office today.
Just a note that my work was all business admin on a computer so I could perform my duties to the full same standard wherever I was.
My managers told me if I was not well enough to attend the site, then I’m clearly not well enough to work so I had to take a sick day or else admit I am well enough to work and therefore well enough to attend the site and get in the car now! They were adamant, despite my explanations proving otherwise, that it was all or nothing.
I didn’t want to take a sick day as even though the first x amount was paid (scheme subsidized by the government), you only got so many per year before you didn’t get any pay. But they told me not to work again by phoning me when I logged in anyway just to set my Out Of Office auto-reply on and reschedule a couple of meetings (which were happening online anyway).
So I took the day off, enjoying my rest and feeling much better as the day went on.
So this happens a few times and I keep complaining and even bringing it to HR and senior managers, but apparently, it was my managers’ discretion so wouldn’t help me.
My days added up and sure enough the first 2 years of my employment I lost a few hundred due to too many sick days when I was not actually sick, just unable to physically get to work.
Then 2020 happened.
No one was allowed to attend the site.
Everyone HAD TO work from home. But due to all my complaints over the last two years, I had heaps of evidence in writing from my managers (and essentially backed up my seniors and HR) that I was not allowed to ever work from home.
So I didn’t.
They were not happy but I held my ground. My partner was in her third trimester so I was looking forward to having all the extra time to help her and be with the baby. They logged it as ‘sick leave’ despite me stating and even getting a fit note from the doctor confirming I was fully fit and well enough to work.
Pay ran out within a number of weeks. I was annoyed but semi-expecting it. But without pay, it was going to be untenable for me going forward so I had to fight it and what I wanted to fix was my absence not being ‘paid leave.’ I gave them the alternative option though that I could work from home and, as my personal health and job circumstances had not changed, they would have to admit they intentionally forced me to take sick leave unnecessarily over 2 years – meaning they would have to pay that back instead.
They did not budge so I sued.
They did their best to ignore the suit so I started building up my case formally including a Subject Access Request where they have to give me any documents, or even notes, held on the system that is about me in any way.
This included emails between my managers asking HR how they could fire me and HR apologizing that they couldn’t find legal grounds too unless I changed my story at any point – i.e. if I gave up the suit and continued working for them then they would view my lawsuit as fraudulent and terminate my employment.
Anyway, this backfired on them as seeing this showed me that I could NEVER drop the case.
I won’t go into the full logistics but when it went in front of a judge their lawyers were embarrassed and before the case was over they offered me a settlement to more than cover my lost wages.
Even though I was never doing any of this to make salary but to just be treated fairly and respectfully as an employee, I decided to let the case finish, and in the end, without me saying anything, they doubled their first settlement offer with the condition that we agreed that we would all move on from the entire ordeal, I was allowed to work from home and continue to do so at my own, unchallenged discretion. So I accepted.”
15. Want To Speak To Someone Who Knows English? Oh, You'll Speak To Many
Her problem could have been resolved so much quicker.
“This story comes from when I worked in an inbound call center.
I handled escalation calls. When someone called in regarding their service plan with complaints that cannot be handled with a regular agent’s authority or the caller demanded to speak with a supervisor or manager the call got transferred into my team’s call queue and one of us handled it.
Little background: I was born and raised in the South-West. When I was a wee little child I spoke with a very heavy stutter. It took several years and lots of patience on my mother’s part to teach me how to speak normally.
The outcome was that I had to enunciate all my words carefully and thus spoke without any hint of a local ‘accent’. Later during my middle school days, I got teased a lot for not having a proper accent. So, I decided to teach myself how to ‘spake wit tah propar ako-cent.’
I watched a lot of my dad’s old black-and-white Westerns to learn the lingo.
Then I started talking like Scotty from the Original Star Trek series. It was fun, so I started copying other accents from TV and movies. I had over a dozen, including German Sergeant Schultz (I know NOTHING!), pirate and badly dubbed Chinese Kung-fu (Lots of pauses, simple phrases, and every sentence ends in ‘Hah!’).
One bad side effect came about though. Often when I’m around a person with a heavy accent I subconsciously begin to mimic their accent. I don’t realize I’m doing it until it is pointed out, usually, the other person thinks I’m making fun of them or something.
To avoid getting punched in the face I have to do some quick explaining.. without the borrowed accent.
So The Call: A call comes into my queue and I answer it like normal. kinda. I had been joking around with my supervisor while using an Indian accent, so when I answered the call I was still using the accent.
The woman caller was immediately FURIOUS! She started screaming at the top of her lungs that she had specifically demanded to speak with someone who spoke English not a…
Well, let’s just say her choice of words lay heavy on the racist side, and leave it at that.
Realizing my error, I dropped the accent and tried to talk with the lady normally but she would have none of it. She continued on a horrible racist diatribe about ‘foreign’ call center workers, how there weren’t any ‘proper’ American English speakers anymore, and cussing me up one side down the other.
Now I’ve handled a lot of angry calls by small-minded people but there is one hot button I will NOT tolerate. The caller started insulting my parents.
“You wish to talk with someone who speaks English, correct?” I broke in, dropping back into the Indian accent at the same time.
“Not a problem,” I said. “I will transfer you to someone who speaks English. But, I must warn you, do not disconnect from the call for any reason whatsoever. We are experiencing a rather large call volume at this time. You are currently at the top of the queue.
But! If you disconnect and call back you will be allll the way back at the bottom of the call line. And you do not want that correct.”
“Very well, please stay on the line and the next available English speaker will be with you shortly.
Have a most pleasant day.” Then I put her on hold.
It should be noted that we were not supposed to put callers on ‘hold’, but I did so that she would 1. Think she was being transferred and 2. Make her listen to horrible hold music.
Placing a caller on hold immediately sent up a red flag in the call monitoring software. Normally a supervisor would come storming over and demand answers. My supervisor, however, had his cubical right next to mine and had been leaning over the top when I had initially fumbled the call.
He had also patched his phone into my line and heard everything the caller had said.
“What are you doing?” He asked while smiling a wicked smile.
“Exactly what she demanded. If she wants to talk with someone who speaks English, then that is exactly what she’s going to get.” I replied with my own crap-eating grin.
After five minutes I took the call off hold and answered with my best Russian accent in place.
Then on hold again. 5 minutes later – German accent.
Then French. Then Swedish. Then Mario Brother’s Italian. So on and so forth.
For over an hour, I kept transferring this racist witch, each time answering the phone with both good, bad, and horrible accents speaking English.
I thought for sure she would have caught on around the thirty-minute mark when I spoke Pirate. She didn’t so I continued.
After about 1 hour and 20 minutes of sending this woman on a verbal tour of the world, the woman was sobbing so hard I could barely make out her distressed words..
so I went in for the kill.
I answered the phone with a thick southern draw. She was sooo happy! She spent a good ten minutes telling me what a horrible experience she had just to “finally talk with someone who speaks ‘proper’ English.” I asked her what I could do for her and she told me what her issue was.
It was something so simple that one of the regular agents could have handled it in less than two minutes. Finishing up the call, the woman once more thanked me for speaking proper English.
I dropped back into the Indian accent. “Not a problem at all madam.
It was a pleasure to handle your call. You know, it is funny… you sound just like a woman I spoke to an hour ago. Isn’t life strange?”
With a satisfied smile, I hung up during the scream of choking rage.”
14. Move Back Out? Fine, Bye
“Two years ago, I decided to look for a new place to live, just wanted somewhere else, management was crap, nothing ever got fixed, neighbors were jerks, had I known what would have happened however, I’d have dealt with that with a grand smile on my face.
Cue time to move, I’m looking for places, my Aunt says “We have a spare room, you can move in with us!” So I ask her how much rent she wants to charge me, seeing as if it’s too much I’ll just look for my own apartment elsewhere.
They wanted 150 dollars a month, and to be honest, that was a deal of a lifetime. There’s a saying ‘If something seems too good to be true, it is’ and boy should I have remembered that.
A few days later I was moved in, just a bed, table, TV, Wii, and two tablets as well as all my clothes, seeing as I didn’t own much at the time.
I paid them that month’s rent and the next so I wouldn’t need to do it next month, there was no written agreement, there was no lease or whatever. My room is set up, took hours to clean cuz their kids (they have 7, and 3 are moved out by this point) used to use it as a playroom, toys, and general crap.
After being there for two days, my uncle told me ‘Since you’re living here now too, you need to help out around the house.’ I asked him what he’d like me to do, and the list was staggering. They wanted me to do the dishes, sweep the floors, watch the kids when they were gone, cook for the kids, clean up after the kids, and do the laundry.
Every, single, night. They expected me to be a live-in male nanny! This was outrageous, but I decided to just suck it up and hopefully get them to agree to far less later on, seeing as 150 a month was golden.
It lasted all of five days, their kids destroyed my entire room. Despite having a lock they just broke it, their youngest two daughters jumped on my small boxy TV like a trampoline because ‘they’re bored’ and neither of their parents did anything about it, refused to punish them, refused to replace my items that got destroyed.
Which also included my Wii, which they smashed because I told them they couldn’t play it, and my two tablets.
I talked to my Aunt about moving out, and how I’d like to get my stuff replaced, she laughed and told me no, so I went to my Uncle to ask about it, he told me they wouldn’t pay a red cent, and that, if I didn’t like living here near their kids, then maybe I should move out.
So, two days later I did. I had almost nothing left except my clothes and some photos that held sentimental value to me (the rest of my stuff was in a storage unit since I only got one room why bring my furniture?).
I left in the middle of the night, and to replace the stuff their kids destroyed and that they refused to replace, I went into their shed and took my Uncle’s hunting gear, a crossbow, arrows, and pretty much all his gear (he didn’t own guns) and sold it on eBay, which just about covered the cost of replacing all my crap, including the bed I left behind because one of their kids decided it would be funny to pee in it.
They didn’t call me until two days later when they realized the house was a total mess, floors were dirty, dishes piled high in the sink, trash had not been taken out, etc. My Aunt was absolutely furious, she screamed at me on the phone that I needed to come back, and we had a deal.
I’m not going to lie, I lost my patience with these people, so I screamed back ‘You people told me if I didn’t like living there, to move out, so I did, sucks to be you witch, maybe clean your own god darn house and watch your own kids!’ Before ending the call, and turning my phone off to ignore the number of spam calls and texts I was getting.
My uncle only ever goes hunting every ten years or so, no idea why, so they still haven’t found out I sold his hunting gear, plus their shed is an absolute trash pile, so I was surprised I found anything in there worth of value to sell to replace my crap.”
13. Improve Or Find Another Job? Will Do!
“Well one month ago today, my GM pulls me into his office to tell me that my foremen think I’m too slow, that I’m not picking up techniques quickly enough, and that I don’t really seem excited enough to work in a warehouse, that I make too many mistakes, and that he’s not going to keep me on at the end of my probation at this rate.
Then finished it off with “mate, you need to sort it out or get another job.”
So I explain that I’ve never been late once, never called in sick, I treat everybody with respect, I always finish all of my work then make sure my bay is clean then help other people finish theirs, (he interrupts and tells me F-bay is the easiest bay which turns into a conversation where he threatens to put me in the most dangerous and difficult bay), I say that I have been known to occasionally pull the wrong length out, but I’ve seen other people completely load trucks with the wrong stock, and I tell him that my bay is hands down the cleanest bay in the warehouse, which is apparently the cleanest warehouse owned by that company.
So I think, screw it, my foremen are jokers and take very little seriously, one of them likely said something as a joke that the gm took seriously, and a little conversation will sort it out. I pull the foreman for that week to the side and explain the situation, and he says “I want you on the crew mate, I think you’re a good lad.” So I figure it’s probably the other guy anyway, his jokes are usually of the “you’re crap and I’m the best” variety, so it would make sense.
So I plan to ask him the next day at shift changeover.
Then I get there the next day and the first thing I hear is my bay took 3 men (including the GM himself) 40 minutes to clean and the GM is livid.
Which got a genuinely good laugh out of me; turned out they were completely serious. I completely forget about talking to my other foreman and ask the guys who cleaned my bay about it. They told me it was already clean, and they had to lay on the floor and reach underneath stacks of steel to pull out loose pieces of paper and whatever they could find.
About an hour into my shift, I’m angry and the GM comes to rub it in my face. I mention that I performed a lift in E bay earlier that day, and four pieces of loose banding (which are slash, stab, and tripping hazards) fell off of it.
In an attempt to make the point that why walk past every bay with actual hazards in them, to clean my bay, which had 0.
The sociopath gives me this little crap-eating grin, shrugs, and says “yeah?” Which had a bully’s “whatcha gonna do about it?” vibe to it.
That’s when the penny dropped. I’d heard about him messing with people for the sake of it, and right now he can screw with me for a month, and then use it as an excuse to extend my probation, keeping me on literally the bare minimum they can legally pay me for another 6 months.
So I put on my poker face to not give him the satisfaction, and any complaint is met with a pretty blank “ok.”
So for the month just gone, I’ve spotted every mistake coming from the office, usually, we just cross things out and correct them, because the guys in the office don’t have a clue, but if I see 125x65mm @ 11.3mCH I know what and where it is without needing the rest of the sheet.
I haven’t made a single mistake for the month, (they’re a regular occurrence for everybody, you’re told they don’t matter unless they leave the warehouse, that is except of course for the GM apparently) the office had made about 2-3 a day which I’ve taken to the GM personally to have corrected.
I’m teaching my foreman tricks that he didn’t know (literally 3 days out of 5, I taught him something), my bay is insanely clean, to the point that I’d argue I clearly must have been wasting time to get it that clean.
I’ve been getting friendly with the director of the company, he’s actually a really nice guy as it turns out.
But basically, my performance has been not just the great performance they usually get from me, they’ve gotten such an amazing performance that it’s absurd.
The last I was told, was that I’m going to be fired today or that I’d better get another job or sort out my performance.
Well before 2020, I happened to be a pretty decent bartender/manager. I’ve just landed hands down the best job of my career.
I’m going to be the head bartender at a 4-star hotel spa and golf course with marble columns and a driveway with a flower feature, a waterfall, and a view of their giant grounds just on the driveway.
Not all of my fingers bend like they used to, my toes have corns between them, my back and one of my shoulders are in constant pain and I’ve got 2 new scars from 6 months in that craphole, including what I call the 1.5T punch to the stomach I took, and I swear I’ve had a bad stomach every day.
So I did sort my performance out, I did get another job, and I did quit through HR with no notice, and reported the jerk for bullying.
He didn’t want or expect me to actually leave. His plan was to mess with me for a month and tell me every way that I suck at the job personally every time he got an excuse.
Then at the end of my probation expected me to beg, and thank him for continuing my probation and by extension, denying me a raise.
I wasn’t doing my job well because I was told to, I was doing my job well to take away any ammo he could have possibly had to screw with me, and gave him no excuse to.
Then at the last minute with no notice I left.
He told me to improve or find another job, I did both, and both times, denied the sociopath the satisfaction of berating me, then left with him knowing that not only did he not get his way, he actually pushed me into improving my life, in a way that makes his life harder.
By doing exactly what he asked.”
12. Say Women Can't Pray? I'll Follow Your Verses To A T
“This happened my senior year of high school, and I was 17 (I was always a year younger than most of my classmates due to a late birthday). I have health conditions that make my memory spotty at best but this one is a favorite story of mine as it was a real turning point for me in terms of standing up for myself and against overzealous religious people.
I had moved schools from public to private halfway into my junior year. During this time I was devoutly Christian, Southern Baptist. I loved my little hidden in the woods church and was the female lead in my youth group. When I got into the school I wasn’t aware it was Church of Christ based so it was a hard clash.
For those who aren’t familiar, religious sects really don’t get along in their beliefs. Church of Christ doesn’t believe in using instruments, women leaders, and really follows anything a group of older men who gets together once a month to decide is the law.
(This is in my experience) As a baptist I was used to jamming out, being asked to pray before the congregation as a youth, etc.
I’m also going to say I never approved of having bible classes in a non-elective school setting.
In my senior year, my physics book was specially made to include prayers, and tried desperately to tie in God in everything we learned. In junior year, my anatomy teacher couldn’t even say the male reproductive part and was blushing and scolding me when I just said it.
It was hilarious!
Anyways, senior year, we had the preacher of the church who basically funded the school as our bible teacher. I was always at odds with him. He made the mistake of saying he loved having debates with his students.
Something he made a rule against in his syllabus the next year my friends showed me because I questioned him and had my own verses as backup. See my own church was training me to be a youth leader and used their funds to help with it.
I was well-versed in the Bible. Every single time I spoke up and “disagreed” he lowered my grade to failing for the day. And every time my mom would go up to the school to our counselor (we had no principal it was a tiny private school my graduating class was 14) and got it raised to at least a C.
So my hatred for this guy was already down pat.
The main problem was that from the beginning he separated seating and had the boys sit on one side and girls on the other with two rows between us. He would ask us different questions, use different verses, and even say different things had different meanings based on our gender! The real problem? He only asked guys to pray before leaving class.
I get it, now, it wasn’t that big of a deal, but being a devout teen this always irked me but I hated having Cs in classes so I had stopped talking. Until one day the guys in the class approached me with a proposition.
“Next class, will you ask to pray? We are sick of doing it and don’t think it’s right he leaves the girls out.”
See they knew that the other girls would never do it being in the same denomination, but me? They knew I was itching for another battle with this man!
Next class comes along and he asks which guy would like to pray (yes he would be specific) and I raised my hand.
“Sir, I really feel like God is speaking to me to do today’s prayer. May I?”
He gives me this ‘are you kidding me look’ and flat out tells me,
“OP you know I only want the guys to pray in here.”
“Well…why,” I asked, bracing myself.
“Because men are the leaders and I should be training them as such! Leaders for the church, their families, and their peers,” he said proudly.
“I pray all the time over my peers in my church…” I respond feeling myself tear up as confrontation was not my strong suit.
“Well, that’s your church this is mine. So that’s that,” he replies.
“…you could just say you’re sexist and get it over with…”
The class was in shock. The girls next to me were smugly saying he wasn’t sexist it’s just how it is, some of the boys were holding back laughter, the preacher looked angry before stating it was biblical.
Oh. I knew I had him now. I demanded he gives me the Bible verses that said women aren’t allowed to pray out loud or over their peers and he gives me three before praying himself and we all leave for homeroom.
I started to cry and the boys all give me side hugs (church hugs as we called them) saying that went way better than they hoped and that one of them wrote down the verses. So we went and looked them up.
Here is where it becomes malicious compliance.
Now I don’t remember the exact verses but all of them had exact guidelines for me to follow for me to be able to be appropriate to pray in public. Now every day we had chapel for a few minutes before lunch or the next classes and it was I think a week later when I was able to use his own verses to comply.
Chapel was being led by our head counselor and luckily our bible teacher that day. And everything fell into place. The counselor said, “let’s have a /senior/ pray before we leave.”
I grinned as I went down my checklist and flipped up my hood on my hoodie and raised my hand proudly yelling “I’m ready now!!”
They both looked at me, the preacher angry again, but the counselor was amused having already been told by me what had happened as he was a chill guy and he asked after the preacher talked to him about it.
Of course, he reprimanded me for calling him sexist, but I didn’t get into any real trouble. Anyways. The preacher had a sudden look of shock as I grinned directly at him as I pointed to my covered head, showing I read his three verses and was maliciously complying with them…
Be with peers or among other women: check!
Have seniority and a request: Check!
Have your head covered: Check!!!
So unless he wanted to get caught in a loop of “oh that’s not what that meant!!” I was finally allowed to pray.
From then on he prayed after every class ended and didn’t bother asking because I always had a hood of some kind just in case.
Ironically this school was a huge reason I turned from being a Christian due to bullying and outrageous rich people’s entitlement, and I hear they are shutting down. They wanted so badly to be a family but kicked students out that needed family the most, even going so far as planting booze in someone’s locker. Good riddance.”
11. Refuse To Increase Your Strict Budget For Buying Necessary Materials? The Results Won't Be Ideal
And that’s what you get for being cheap
“The hotel where I work is at the seaside so sand is everywhere. People bring it on their feet despite showers available at the beach. Our staff cleans the corridors every day and to deal with the sand in the rooms it was decided to buy a washbowl for every room.
People filled them with water and put their feet there before going into their rooms, this way our cleaning ladies were relieved from constant nagging of guests to clean the room of sand like every hour. Also, many who were too greedy to pay for the usage of washing machines could wash their clothes themselves.
Anyway, it proved to be a good decision in previous seasons.
One summer, we were faced with the problem that the number of washbowls was not enough to put in every room. Some were broken, and some were stolen (by guests and later staff in the off-season probably).
Nevertheless, it was about time to buy a few new washbowls and I informed my supervisor about it. At first, it was OK, but when the hotel started to fill up, complaints about washbowls appeared. Most of the guests were understanding, – I am not in charge of acquisitions and as soon as I get anything I give it to guests/put in rooms, etc.
But one particular guest (let’s call her Alice) was pretty straightforward – when I told her that I have no washbowls and am waiting for them too she somehow managed to get in touch with the hotel owner the same day and told him everything in person.
Here I need to make a little remark. There is a strict and a bit stupid hierarchy in our hotel. There is a hotel owner who does nothing except receive a fixed amount of profits. He never listens to common workers’ pleas and always directs us to our supervisors.
There are 5 CEOs each responsible for their own parts of the hotel (kitchen, security, reception & cleaning staff, garden territory, technicians, and repairs). Then goes supervisors and finally me (aka one of the common workers). So if for instance, I need something to be bought I ask my supervisor, she puts it in a letter of request and gets it to her respective CEO and then they, the upper ones decide whether to give money for that or not.
This goes for literally EVERYTHING that needs to be bought even toilet paper. As far as I know, the amount of profit the owner gets is fixed somehow so for CEOs it is not only a question of how to do the job properly and earn more for the hotel but also how to spend less in any aspect (this way CEOs will get more profits for themselves).
This stupidity still haunts me in nightmares even though I’ve been working in different hotels for a few years already. My supervisor was trying to cut expenses in everything since she received bonuses for doing that (or even stole saved finances, I don’t know).
One day she decided to hide our water cooler in the basement to cut expenses on water (no free water for guests – more profits for the hotel). Sometimes it took weeks to buy light bulbs which were in a store like a minute away because there was no approval to buy light bulbs and we were waiting for them.
Nobody cared that half of the corridors were black at night for weeks. As far as I know, nobody cares about anything there still.
So back to washbowls. Alice told the owner about the problem. Now we got instant approval since it was not us who asked something from CEOs but the owner himself.
He ordered to buy much more washbowls than needed and the budget needed to buy them was given to my supervisor. Now comes the malicious part. She thought that in this matter a good old ”finance saving approach” was necessary so she decided to save half the amount of the given finances and still manage to follow the letter of request and buy 30 items.
Half of the finances were given to the guy that had to buy the washbowls. A couple of minutes later he calls her asking what to do. There wasn’t enough in the budget to buy all thirty washbowls specified in the list.
He could buy roughly 15 or all 30 but much smaller ones. Now there were 30 washbowls specified in the list and that is the list everyone saw, then anyone can notice that 15 does not equal 30 eventually and something is wrong here, so she told the guy to buy 30 smaller ones just to be on the same term as the list.
So the guy buys bowls so small they are more fitting for a portion of a salad than to clean feet from sand. He brings all 30 of them to me replying to my questions with a poker face and telling me that’s what he was told to do.
The same poker face I show to Alice when I give her a salad bowl instead of a proper washbowl. I tell her if she managed to find the hotel owner maybe she can tell him about the circus that is going on here.
She probably did. Nothing changed.
P. S. My supervisor is in close relations with one of the CEOs so nothing gets her fired.
P. P. S. I’ve seen a similar situation happening with other things like towels and blankets too.”
Another User Comments
“This doesn’t look like cost-cutting to me; it looks like technically legal embezzlement because everyone is in on it, and the owner doesn’t care.” Serenity_B
10. Refuse To Replace The Gear Even Though It's Wrong? The Aftermath Will Get You Blacklisted From The Industry
“I was helping my youngest daughter pack up the truck to move over the weekend. We had a good amount of people so the work went quickly. There was close to an hour before they had to leave. There was my daughter, her maternal grandfather driving and another car following with more things plus her 2 kids.
Her grandfather, Roy, worked with my father in the same mill and once in a while worked together. This was a story he laughed as he told it.
This is as close to how Roy told it and how I remember what he said.
There was a piece of equipment needing to be fixed. He said what it was but I have no clue what he was talking about just remember this cost close to $300000 back in the mid-’80s. It was the original piece from when the mill opened in 1968 so parts were obsolete and Dad had to make them by hand.
Roy said the bearing burnt up and stripped some teeth from the main gear. From what he was saying Dad not only made the gear by hand, but he also made a puller to get the gear off because that bearing needing to be replaced was behind it.
Dad had gone to get the puller when the shop supervisor came over to talk with Roy. He asked how long the job would be and was told at least 5 days. 3 days to make or repair the new gear and another 2 days for tear down and set up.
Roy said Dad might be able to fix this one and if that was the case 3 days maximum.
The shop super asked why Roy was just sitting there and not taking the gear off. He explained where Dad had gone and what he was getting and he would be back in a minute or two.
This was not good enough for the shop supervisor and he grabbed a sledgehammer and said, “If you just tap it with this it should come loose enough to just pull with your hand.” Dad had just stepped into the room and hollered for the shop supervisor to stop before he breaks something.
I guess he looked right at Dad and smacked the gear.
I have no idea what it was made of but he hit it in just the right spot to break the gear into a couple of pieces. Needless to say, Dad and Roy were upset.
They walked into the office of the general manager and told him what just happened and instead of the 3 days they could have had it done in, it will now take 5 or so days. He was livid. First, the shop supervisor is not to touch any tool unless passing it to the person using it and another is he is not to try any repairs himself under any circumstance.
The next day when Dad and Roy got to the machine there was a gear sitting there. The shop supervisor came over and said he had it flown in from somewhere in the states and it cost $20000 because it was air expressed.
Dad tried telling him that is the wrong gear and he will just build one he knows will work. The shop supervisor told him to use the gear he bought because he wasn’t going to waste that much company money without using what he bought.
Here is the MC: Dad and Roy got the bearing changed and were done getting the gear into place. It was made from a different material and a few other major differences. When they were all done they called over the shop supervisor and the general manager to show how the machine is “fixed.” Roy and Dad gave the shop supervisor the “honor” of starting it up and showing how well it’s working.
With a big smile, he started it up.
It ran well for about the first 5 minutes of the 15-minute test run when it started making odd noises. Before the shop supervisor could hit the emergency stop button there was a loud bang and lots of screeching metal.
Dad and Roy took the covering off and saw that not only was the gear destroyed but it was in tiny little pieces all through the machine. The main rod where the bearing got replaced had broken in a couple of places.
It would cost the company more to buy the parts and fix this one than it would be to order one from Japan.
Within 6 weeks the Japanese workers brought the new machine but had set it up and calibrated it. This cost the mill just under 3 million where it would have cost under 50000 if Dad and Roy were left to fix it.
Since the shop supervisor wasn’t part of the union, he was fired on the spot. When the mill fired him and wouldn’t even let him on the property, he had to wait for security to bring everything from his office.
Roy said the shop supervisor wasn’t made to pay back anything for his major mess-up, but his name was blacklisted in the industry.
He moved away within a month and as far as Roy knew no one had heard from him since. Dad and Roy didn’t get any real bonus for the job but there was a little extra on their paycheck the next week.
Roy said he can’t remember how much but it wasn’t a huge amount but it made a difference.
I love hearing stories about my dad at work. He always had a warped sense of humor so any malicious compliance by him was usually a doozy.
But it wasn’t just at work. Anywhere was not safe from him. Too bad he isn’t here to tell me more stories but I have memories of some and I hear more from people he was friends with or worked with. I hope you enjoy reading them as much as I loved hearing them.”
9. Call The Police On Me For Just Doing My Job? Go For It
“I work for a water company carrying out repairs on burst water mains on an on-call basis of 1 week every 2 months.
This particular job happened about 8 years ago.
We get a call out that a major pipe feeding a large housing estate had burst and needed repairs asap.
We head to the yard at about 11 pm at night to collect our gear and get the plans and drawings of other utilities in the area of the work.
We arrive on-site, set up the traffic management as per regulations, and speak with the inspector that called us out for an exact location of repair (too much water to mark in the usual way).
We set up our barriers and work lights around the work area.
We get out our Stihl saw and cut a couple of meters of tar out ready to start breaking the tar out of the road.
Just as I started the jackhammer going Mr.
Sleepyhead comes stomping down the street in his slippers and dressing gown looking rather perplexed.
Took my ear protection off to see what he wanted (I could tell it wasn’t to offer us a coffee).
He then proceeded to tell me you can shut that freaking thing off and screw off until it’s daytime.
I explained that it was emergency work and that we couldn’t have 600 properties get up and have no water in the morning so it has to be completed now.
And our work was fully understood by the council and the police.
We then get the usual bollocks of do you know who I am (I refrained from telling him that I knew exactly who he is, he is an irritating jerk who was stopping us from working).
He then starts turning the air supply off so I can’t use the jackhammer which was ever so slightly annoying.
He then stated that he knew the police chief inspector and would have me arrested if I carried on, I said that I have to carry on as per my emergency work order and if he carried on obstructing us I’d have to call the police to get the job finished.
Needless to say, he did it again and said call who you like I’ll have you arrested and sacked by morning. by now I was tired, cold, and wet and starting to get slightly irritated by his actions, so cue MC.
I go back to the van and ring the police to explain that we are out carrying out emergency work and we are being prevented from completing it by one of the local residents and explain what he’s doing to stop us from working.
He stomps off in his now soggy slippers and I poured a coffee, about 40 minutes later headlights appear in the distance so I thought great just what we need so we can get done and recharged by 6 am (hopefully).
Mr. Sergeant and Mr. constable arrive and come for a chat to find out what the heck is going on and (his words) why the heck are we doing it after midnight in the first place.
So I proceeded to explain that the water main had burst and we needed to get the supply restored by 6 am to save between 1500- 2000 (only a slight exaggeration) people having no water in the morning when they get up.
He then realized the job needed to be done and toddles off for a word with Mr. Sleepyhead.
Before long we can hear the shouting from down the street. It then goes quiet and he comes back down to us to explain that the guy was a sandwich short of a picnic (a British euphemism for a nut job) and that they are going to have to hang around in case Mr.
Sleepyhead started playing stupid games. So we fire up the compressor and start jackhammering again with my back towards the police car to save anything pinging off in that direction. A few minutes later the machine driver toots his horn to get my attention.
Mr. Sleepyhead had only come down the road carrying a piece of timber (lumber for you American folks) and was in the process of getting arrested for disturbing the peace. I honestly laughed so hard I nearly peed myself. Who the heck is that stupid when the police are around?
Just in case anyone is interested, we were back on by 5:30 am and had a coffee with Mr.
Sleepyhead’s neighbor, who was highly amused because he’d seen the whole incident out of his window, his only disappointment was his surveillance cameras didn’t pick up the video and he only had the audio to share with his mates.”
Another User Comments:
“While I do empathize with someone whose sleep is being interrupted, I also understand that the water mains, sewers, gas lines, and electric lines all need to be kept in good repair, and sometimes emergency work is needed.
I also know that the workers would rather be in bed during the night themselves, rather than cutting up the street in the dark. Thanks, utility workers, I salute you!
(Seriously, most of us take things like running water for granted. It’s not until you have to do without for a few weeks because everything is shut down by a giant hurricane that you start to appreciate the little things. I remember utility workers laboring round the clock for weeks.)” nymalous
8. Tell Her Women Shouldn't Drive? Watch How It'll Inconvenience You
“So, this is my grandmother’s story. My family has been telling the tale for decades. Grandpa himself told it to his daughter’s fiance as a lesson in not underestimating his new bride. Grandma told it slightly differently to my mom when she and my father were engaged.
This is somewhere between the two versions. It’s a lesson in “be careful what you wish for, as you just might get it.” Personally, I’ve always thought that it was hilarious.
My grandparents were very old school. Grandpa got a job working for John Deere as a teen and worked his way up the ladder to foreman, then manager.
Grandma was a typical housewife in the 1950s and was held to typical housewife standards. She was to cook and clean and be prepared to entertain Grandpa’s business associates at a moment’s notice. It was her job to make sure the children were taken care of and never got in her husband’s way.
She was expected to have dinner on the table at 5:30 sharp when he got home from work. Her house and herself were to be impeccably kept at all times… etc.
They were progressive and well-off enough that Grandma had her own car.
She was expected to use it to run the household errands and take the (four) kids to appointments and such. It was important that her husband not be bothered with such things. The household and family were her responsibility. He had a job.
Well, one day, Grandpa arrived home from work, and not only was dinner not on the table, but Grandma wasn’t even there. The kids (teens at the time) hadn’t been fed. Their homework was still on the kitchen table, there were unwashed dishes in the sink, and a dozen other little chores hadn’t been done yet.
Most importantly, Grandpa was inconvenienced.
He’d been home just long enough to let his frustration stew into anger when Grandma’s car pulled into the drive. He began shouting at her before she’d even had the chance to set down her purse or take off her jacket.
He ranted about all the things she hadn’t done because she was out “running around” when she should have been home, taking care of the house and making his dinner. He worked very hard all day to provide for this family, was it too much to ask for a hot dinner when he got home? She’d had a very good reason for not being home, but he never let her tell it, accepting no excuses.
But she was a “good wife” so she intended to let him vent for a while, then she would serve him supper and explain what had gone wrong.
Then, Grandpa screwed up. As sometimes happens when we speak in anger, he began to blame the wrong thing for his irritation.
He began to blame the car and her access to it. He said something to the effect of, “You don’t have any business out driving around anyway. You should be home. I should never have let you start driving in the first place! Women shouldn’t drive!”
“You don’t want me to drive?” Grandma asked calmly, retrieving her keys from her purse.
“Fine. Then I won’t drive ever again.” And she set those car keys on the counter, put her things away, and served dinner.
And bless her heart, Grandma stuck with that declaration no matter how much more difficult it made life. Grandpa had to take afternoons off in the middle of the week when a teacher scheduled a meeting.
He didn’t get a moment’s peace on the weekends, between grocery trips and taking the kids to activities or doctors appointments or for haircuts or clothes. He had to drive Grandma to every Saturday salon appointment. Previously, Grandma had taken herself and the kids to church, letting him sleep.
Now he had to wake up early on Sundays to take them all himself.
Grandpa was nearly as stubborn as his wife. He held out, expecting her to apologize and ask for her keys back. She never did. Instead, she simply rearranged the household schedule so that he could handle all the driving.
Months later, after never getting a single weekend to relax, after having dinner pushed back nearly every day because he had to drive someone someplace, he finally gave in and apologized. He tried to tell her that he was wrong and that she should start driving again.
He tried to tell her that he now appreciated all she did to make his life easier. He all but begged her to take those keys.
I suspect that Grandma had always disliked driving because she never did take back those keys.
Nothing Grandpa said or did could convince her to get back behind the wheel. He’d said she had no business driving a car and she was going to hold him to that declaration, no matter what. For over fifty years, until the day she died, Grandma never drove a car again for any reason.
Not after the kids graduated and moved out. Not after Grandpa retired. Even after Grandpa’s death in the eighties she still refused because “my husband always said that women shouldn’t drive.”
Edit: As to the reason for the whole argument and why Grandma was late that day:
Sadly, as with the start of most epic arguments between married persons, the details of the triggering cause have been lost to time.
Grandma, telling the story forty years later, recalled that it had been “one of those days” for her. She’d been making dinner and had it nearly ready when she’d discovered that she’d forgotten to buy something that seemed vital at the time.
So she’d stepped out to fetch it and one thing led to another until a ten-minute trip turned into nearly two hours, accounting for car trouble.
The only part of said trouble that she recalled clearly was a flat tire and only because Grandpa had to take the car to the shop to have the tire repaired later that week and he’d grumbled about how it was just another example of why women shouldn’t be driving.”
7. Want The Whole Pot To Yourself? Fine, But You'll Be Eating Every Last Bite
“This happened many, many moons ago. I am of Indian descent and when I was a kid we lived in a joint family (you know parents, siblings, grandparents, uncles, aunts, and cousins all under one roof).
Frequently, really yummy snacks/desserts were made/bought and would dissipate just as quickly.
So we had a system that ensured everyone got their fair share of all of it – individual items were pretty much equally divided but for other things they were more or less equal but slightly weighted by appetite/ability to consume, where that made sense.
So a 4-year-old would get an adequate amount of ice cream but it certainly won’t be the same amount as a teenager’s or an adult’s share.
Little me felt that was incredibly unfair and felt personally wronged by this system. Never mind that there was usually enough for all the kids to get seconds if they wanted it.
Or that I often couldn’t even finish my first bowl.
One day my mom makes a quick and easy family favorite – milk payasam (or kheer). It’s a rice/vermicelli pudding-like thing and garnished with dry fruits and aromatics like saffron and cardamom.
The usual division happens and I was over this nonsense! Size does matter, darn it!
I start sulking even before the first bowl is handed out. And am in full-on tantrum mode by the time my bowl is filled. Everyone is perplexed as I’m usually a pretty easygoing kid.
My mom takes me to our room and tries to calm me down/reason with me. She offers to give me more when I finish my first bowl. She offers me a bigger bowl. But nothing was going to be enough. I was going to take down this unfair system once and for all.
She finally says what I’ve been waiting to hear: “What is it that you want?” Ha! I now have her just where I want her!
So I say with extreme conviction – “I want it all!” Only that would make whole the injustice I’ve been subject to all these years!
To my utter surprise and delight, she simply says ok! We march out to the waiting family and my mom says to everyone – “I’ve agreed to let OP have this whole pot.
And I’ll make a fresh batch for everyone else! No matter what happens, I would appreciate you letting me handle this my way.”
I’m sitting there triumphant! She then looks at me and says – “ok this whole pot is all yours – but you are not to leave this spot until every last bite is eaten.
And no one else will touch it! Deal?” My greedy little eyes light up and of course, I say yes.
And I start digging in. You probably know where this is going by now!
My mom whips up another batch for the rest of the family.
Meanwhile, I get through my usual share (I’m a notoriously slow eater) and then I’m maybe able to handle two more spoonfuls before I’m full.
And I want to stop but nope! My mom reminds me that this is what I deprived the whole family of and created extra work for her, for! So I couldn’t leave without finishing it.
I manage to get in a few more mouthfuls. And now the sweet is getting to me – clawing at me really. I look around the room pleading silently. But everyone else is busy focusing on their own bowls per my mom’s request to not interfere.
No one would even make eye contact.
I now start fidgeting but my mom is now parked in front of me and won’t let me budge. I try to buy more time by pushing the payasam around on my bowl but not really eating.
By now my cousins are all finished and are off to play per usual.
And I’m stuck with a congealing, room temp, too-sweet mess of my own making that I can’t get away from. My mom has picked up a book and is reading leisurely, completely unperturbed by my predicament.
Every time I even shift on my seat, she looks at me and goes you asked for this, so you have to finish this!
An hour or so later, after the tiniest of dents to that potful of payasam in front of me, I cannot stomach another bite.
I… just… can’t!
Soon, I throw back my chair and hoof it to the bathroom and start hurling. After which, of course, the tears come. My mom comes after me, helps me clean up, and holds me for a bit.
Then she asks me gently but firmly if I am ready to apologize and move on or whether I plan to continue rebelling – because you know – that pot is just where I left it and there’s nowhere else she has to be.
I am suitably contrite, make my walk of shame back to the living room, make my apologies to everyone, and call it a night!
I obviously learned my lesson, my mom is still a rockstar and I still can’t stand more than a couple of spoonfuls of payasam even after all these years. I just consider it a small price to pay for a great life lesson!”
6. Refuse To Have Us Work Earlier? Efficiency Will Plummet Big Time
“This was a few years ago now. What I’ve heard, the changes I helped instigate have been reverted. It is a good story nonetheless, but let this be a lesson that no company ever has workers’ backs.
I used to work at a major grocer.
They more or less supplied all restaurants, hotels, school kitchens, etc. in my country. Since all didn’t need their food at the same time, they scheduled workers for different times. Usually, the bulk of food would be driven out the afternoon before it was needed, and deliveries could not take more than 8 hours tops.
They also promised their customers to fix problems with their orders, say if a picker had missed an item or taken the wrong one or if a carton got destroyed while delivering, etc. All this amounted to a very rigid structure where management required top quality.
We had detailed reports on everything, and if we were below efficiency we got serious talks with management.
Because the job was easy, they could handle a large turnover because training to 100% speed took no more than a month or two.
This pushed longtime workers to be excellent all the time, and most people that had been there a year or two picked their orders with 100%, or close to, accuracy and also were above the set efficiency margins by a good amount.
We actually got nothing back from management for working more efficiently. No increased salaries or bonuses for being above our weekly goals. Keep this in mind for later as it is important.
To handle customers’ various demands, we had two morning shifts (6-15, 7-16), a day shift (0930-1800), and an evening (1530-2200).
We also didn’t assemble orders on Sundays if there were no leftover orders that couldn’t be finished on Saturday. Generally, day-shifters had the worst salary since it was precisely in the “unflexible time” margins. In my country, you are paid more for worked hours between 22-08.
There were large disparities between the shifts. Almost all new employees began working on the day shift, hence it became known as the “chaos” shift. The more seasoned workers began hating this shift since they had poor handling of picking trucks and were slow in the narrow alleyways.
Newbies obviously couldn’t do much about this and it wasn’t their fault. Adding to that was that earlier shifts got priority at getting home earlier if the company as a whole were ahead of orders.
Now to the malicious compliance.
The earliest shift, 6-15, had to pick for a major fast-food chain each morning.
This was heavy work, a box of fries weighed 15kg and an order typically had 30 boxes. It wasn’t unusual that you’d pick a total weight of 7000kg or more during a whole shift. If they finished early, they usually got to go home for the day.
Hence, it was sought after to work there and many of us day-shifters applied to switch shifts. The line to switch got longer and longer, and during my 3y of working there, few actually got to switch before “the incident” since the only reason the company had to switch an employee was if one working the other shifts quit.
During summer months, the ordinary early shifters went on their vacation and in July/August the more seasoned of us day-shifters got to switch shifts to fulfill the fast-food chain’s orders. Management could not force us to do this, but we did it voluntarily and they could do our weekly schedule however they liked.
Typically, it got really bad with early mornings and later evenings intertwined. It was against labor laws to schedule us like that, but we didn’t say anything to our union since we wanted the earlier shifts. It was amazing to finish early! I had time to hit the gym, go to the beach in the afternoon and have a beer with friends before I got to bed.
After working those hours, I really wanted to switch but management was extremely stringent. It worked for them, they could keep the large bulk of people on the less expensive day shift and ask them for help when needed. They didn’t have to switch anyone, but I had an idea.
I talked with all the people that usually switched shifts and convinced them that if no one switched, they’d had to move people to the earlier shifts since they did not have people enough to do the required tasks. I also talked with all of the seasoned workers to stop doing extra work.
For my plan to succeed, I needed everyone to do minimal work and no one to switch.
It was glorious. Efficiency numbers plummeted. For 4 whole weeks, management had to ask people to come in on Sundays to work whole 8-hour shifts which was 300% salary due to it being weekends and overtime.
I heard from friends that worked in commerce that customers were furious that orders weren’t fulfilled. Management ripped their hair out since we all did a minimal, but fully accepted, amount of work, and hence they couldn’t fire anyone. What did this all lead to? They switched half of the day shift to the earlier shift, which included all of the people that used to flex out of the day shift. They had to hire five more people and they gave the evening shift an extra hour until 2300 which was huge for them.”
5. Wait Weeks To Display Your Products? You'll Lose Hundreds Of Bucks
You should’ve just listened to them from the get-go.
“I worked for a very long time for a toy store. I then moved out of state and found another toy store to work at and was the assistant manager there as well (I thought the atmosphere would be the same….
I was very wrong). It was a cool place to work, I loved interacting with the kids and working in customer service. Aside from the occasional Karen, all was good.
Now once we got a HUGE shipment and a lot of it was cute little dolls that are quite expensive and hailed from France.
The display was super cute but it was one of those “easy assembly” cardboard contraptions that were supposed to be held together by these push-pin rivets. No big deal. I built a lot of toys and displays in my time. I start organizing everything and notice the baggie of rivets is missing.
Again, no big deal, I am a flexible person and was taught to keep pushing no matter what so I found the world’s smallest zip ties that we had on hand and noticed they were the same size as the little holes and would work PERFECTLY.
Now, all would have been fine except Big Boss (Tim, name changed) was VERY particular about how he wanted his stores to look and be organized (read: nitpicky). He so happened to be in the store that night and he told me to contact the doll people and let them know I needed this ONE set of very small pieces and NOT to build this display until we had those “to keep the look of the display.”
I tried telling him that I had had previous experience from my other toy store with this particular company and while they were great at shipping things out sometimes their displays took FOREVER to ship out.
However, he cut me off and told me to “just wait for the part and don’t build it until it comes in, ok?”
So I said ok.
Many coworkers came up to me and asked why there was all this new product sitting back there, and I told them what happened, and they studiously ignored the dolls as they too had just about had enough of Tim’s nitpicking.
Thing is, without this display we did not have the room for this new product. The purpose of the display was to have a free-standing area that would be available to display these beautiful little angels. Otherwise, they had absolutely no place to be put.
I tried asking him again the following week (when he came in for two minutes to drop off something) if I should just build the display because the dolls were not out and thus causing us to lose out on sales but again I was cut off and told to “just wait” without letting me finish my sentence.
He then left as he was in a hurry.
A couple more days go by and he finally has time to stop by and look around, and he asks how the dolls have been selling as he did not see them out.
Have we sold out?
I proceeded to lead him back to the stock room and show him the area I had so beautifully arranged for allllll of the precious little dolls as well as a very detailed note with contact dates for the company regarding the rivets.
Tim: So you haven’t put them out?!
Me: Tim, you said not to build the display without the rivets. I tried showing you my alternative but you said to just wait for them, and so we are still waiting.
Tim: But… they need to sell! These are new!
Me: Without the display, we just don’t have the space.
I suppose I could take something else off the floor and put them out if you want? …
Tim: Build the display with the zip ties. Once the rivets get here, we can just replace them (note: this is exactly what I had recommended before).
So, I did as I was told and finally sold many of the cute little dolls, but definitely not as many as could have been sold earlier. Tim was very upset as he did not like being “wrong” and HATED when anyone stood up to his ridiculous requests or offered any suggestions.
He soon learned that I kind of knew what I was talking about but I did end up quitting shortly after because he was just a pill to work for, and he never took any of my suggestions (still running windows 99 and no hopes for an update any time soon, last I heard). As a person outside of his payroll he’s a cool dude but working for him is just a whole other can of beans.”
4. Want Honest Feedback? I'll Talk Smack
“I was a biology major and had to take two semesters of physics. I’m not particularly interested in it, but there are elements that I do find interesting and while I wasn’t excited for the class, I wasn’t dreading it too much either.
From the beginning, I didn’t enjoy the method of teaching he used, but everyone learns differently and I’m fairly adaptable so I did my best. This was algebra-based physics, which was the usual choice for bio majors, and relied heavily on equations.
By the first test, we were expected to have about 10 equations memorized to use on the test. The tests were usually about 5-6 questions, each with about 4 parts, so each part would be worth about 5%. The parts were dependent on each other, so if you couldn’t answer part A, you couldn’t even attempt parts B, C, or D.
The first test nearly had me in tears when I realized that I couldn’t even attempt half of the questions and was missing out on half the points without even having a chance to try because I couldn’t remember an equation for one of the earlier parts.
That was bad enough. Then, in the first class after the tests were graded, the teacher walked in and began explaining that the test scores were only 20% of your grade, the rest of which was based on homework, lab, and attendance.
He told the whole class that if they get low scores on tests, you can still pass the class. He said that our class average was higher than the previous year’s averages for the first test – the average was 45%.
My jaw dropped and my heart started racing. He handed back our tests, and I got 25%. I have never scored lower than 70% on any test before. I was a B-average student.
We had two more tests before the final, and each test added about 10 more equations to the list, so there were about 20 for the second test and 30 for the third.
I had disability accommodations for ADHD, so I asked them if they could help me with getting an equation sheet to have during the test because I’m unable to memorize that many equations. They told me they couldn’t help because they couldn’t “tell the teacher how to run the class”.
I talked to the teacher about it – he said that if I understood the material well enough, I would be able to “come up with the equations on my own”. He was also the department head, and I didn’t think anyone above him would take me seriously.
So I powered through, crying the whole way. My dad, who is very good at math and physics, helped me as much as he could. I adapted well enough to start testing in the 60% and 70% range. On the final exam, he provided us with an equation sheet which was a full page of equations.
I don’t remember my exact score on the final, but it was around 80%.
In the last couple weeks of class, he told us that he encouraged everyone to participate in the university’s anonymous class evaluations and he would provide extra credit for those who showed him proof that it was completed (not what was actually written, it was still anonymous.
This was pretty common practice at the school). He encouraged us to be thorough and honest. Cue malicious compliance.
I wrote a scathing yet professional evaluation of the way he ran his class. It took me an hour to word it properly and almost ran out of character count on the submission page.
No teacher should expect the majority of their students to fail the tests. He shouldn’t have to weigh the grades so that students still pass even while failing tests.
I learned very little from him, and that’s what frustrated me the most.
I was being charged almost $40k/year to learn, and he was completely useless to me and most of the others in the class.
So while I was furious about the whole thing, the malicious compliance of getting 5 extra points for talking crap about him when he asked us to be thorough was so satisfying that it was the only thing that got me through the last week of that semester and finals.
I heard from another student who took his class the next semester that he told them he had changed a few things about the class based on feedback he got. I never knew how much it changed or if it really was for the better, but it sure was satisfying to hear that my feedback got to him.
I still think about him sometimes and it still ticks me off that he ran his class that way for years. Screw you Bruce.”
3. Just Figure It Out? Uh, Okay Then
“I worked at a company (let’s just call it Us) as a hardware engineer. Customers would contract us to design, redesign, repair, and analyze, etc. their projects/modules, and so on. One day, a big long-term customer (we’ll call the company ABC) called and it went a bit something like this:
ABC: Hello Us, we have a module that is not working.
Can you analyze and fix it?
US: Hello ABC, can you go into more detail? what exactly is not working? Is it hardware or software related? (note: Us did both)
ABC: It’s not working….
Us: … well, yeah, but what is not working?
ABC: it’s not working…
Us: ….. aaaallllright… can we have the technical documents so we can start analyzing them?
ABC: No can do, but here is the faulty module.
US: How do you expect us to work on the module without having a clue what it is supposed to do?!?
ABC: you’ll figure it out!
so basically this went on for about a week. After that we just said ok. I asked my boss since I was supposed to work on it, how I should go on with the task. My boss, the crazy lovely guy he was, just said “You heard them, we have to figure it out.
So complete reverse-engineering of the module. And make sure you write down EVERY SINGLE MINUTE you work on it.”
Small side note for the non-tech savvy peops here: a reverse engineering process is a long and tedious process of tracing every single copper trace on a board, basically starting with the finished product with the goal to redraw the schematics for it.
Think of it like having a meal with 5 courses and in the process of eating figuring out the EXACT steps the cook took to make it.
So I did as my boss said. I re-engineered the whole module, drawing my own schematics for it, figuring out the inner workings, even taking a ROM dump, basically de-assembling the machine code into readable source code, and tracing down the workings of the software as well.
This whole process took something like 4-5 months for me and 2 others JUST reverse engineering this module. After that, we finally started working on the errors and found out that there was a bug in the software causing the processor on the module to reboot like every 2 seconds.
huh… A bit of research showed that this module was part of an industrial controller system. Let’s just say that if they put these modules anywhere in there, a lot of people would be without power…
So after finding the error and fixing it by literally changing 1 (on words: ONE) line of code, writing the report, and scheduling a meeting with the client, I got back to my boss who was following my working hours really carefully for the project.
It turned out there were a LOT of work hours for that project. Through the grapevines, I heard that the total cost for the client was totaled well over 300k!
So the meeting began and we presented our findings, showing the whole process we did including the reverse engineering.
This time we spoke to different people than the ones who gave us the project. This time, the CEO of ABC was in the meeting too. At first, he asked where we got the schematics because they didn’t look like they were made with their templates.
We were told we weren’t given the documents so we HAD to re-engineer EVERYTHING. Easy to say the CEO was LIVID. He immediately asked who told us that we couldn’t get the docs. We told him. He thanked us, made sure we were paid 10% MORE than we billed, and hung up.
The fallout came to us via an email from the CEO himself. He apologized to us that we had the hassle of re-engineering. Also said that if ever we have trouble like this again, we are free to contact him directly.
Also, the guy who said “You figure it out” apparently got FIRED ON THE SPOT.
Least to say that even if it was a LOT of work, I really have to grin every time I remember this.
This happened about 3 years ago and since then I quit the job to study to become a state-certified technician.
After that, I will happily go back to the company since working there was a charm! Also on a side note: after talking to the CEO of ABC and getting a few documents, we discovered that this software bug was over 9 YEARS old… in a “Safety First Over Anything Else” industrial controller system…. who would’ve thought…”
2. Just Analyze The Bucket? I'll Analyze It Real Well
“In August last year, 2020, I successfully handed in the last piece of work, a CFD simulation study, that cemented my Master’s Degree in Advanced Mechanical Engineering and Aerospace with a first-class distinction. I am very familiar with fracture mechanics.
Important facts to draw from this are:
There is a worldwide disaster going on, and this leads to no shortage of boredom.
I have just proved my competence as an engineer with a focused specialization in computer simulation models.
Engineers when bored are dangerously sassy.
The story: As a recent graduate while the world is closed off, getting an entry-level position is somewhat of a challenge with companies struggling to stay afloat in these troublesome times, and the landlord still comes chomping at the bit for his rent money.
I now currently work for a company run by a colorful megalomaniac which has a jungly name and specializes in warehouse-based online commerce (no names will be mentioned). I am vastly overqualified for my position, but need must.
I am currently in the department that deals with quality.
One of my main responsibilities now is going around the warehouse inspecting items for defects, issues with returns, repeated problems, and frequently damaged items and passing judgment before auditing them, fixing problems as I go, and raising tickets as necessary, it’s not a bad job to be doing.
One of the things I raise tickets for is the preparation of items, which happens if an item is fragile or regularly broken and needs additional protection. It is up to me whether it is worthwhile sending things for prep.
When I was given my training for this role, my mentor warned me about someone whose login literally appears a synonym of “battleground” and to expect their messages on the in-house messaging system to be equally as dramatic sounding.
They are one of the individuals who reads my tickets and audits and sets the follow-ups in motion but doesn’t necessarily see all the info I see. They also work the opposite shift to me, so there is no overlap and the only time communication gets through is at the start and end of each shift as we see messages left.
A few nights ago my computer on wheels told me to check a bucket of detergent for damages, I was sent to a few locations and judged the product to be unpreppable, I.e. it’s a container made of brittle plastic that has a hazmat item inside and has 5kg of product inside.
The reason it was deemed so is our standard test to see if an item will need prep is to drop it from 3ft high, if you damage that unit, all others should get prepped. This item will definitely break on impact, and even with bubble wrap, it will need many layers to stop that from happening.
As a result, the cost/benefit of wrapping up 1500 of these items in inventory doesn’t add up, especially as it would take multiple back-to-back shifts to fix this in-house for just this 1 item.
“Battleground” left me a message stating that if I believe the item will break, it MUST be analyzed and they believe the items MUST be prepped, although they aren’t aware of how many there are in stock.
They actually are on the same level as me in the hierarchy and have no actual power to direct me as they wish, and I protest that there is no way I’m going to start dropping 5kg buckets of hazmat on the floor.
Then the message is waiting for me at the start of my next shift to “DO YOUR JOB AND JUST ANALYZE THE BUCKET” which was actually all in caps. Okey dokey, MC time.
I got home the morning after having not been sent to look at any of those items that night, and in an effort to satisfy the request began designing the bucket in CAD, I knew the dimensions, I knew the material, and I had the software licenses to create a detailed impact simulation.
I discovered that in order to absorb enough impact to not break the bucket I would need 6 layers of cushioning at least for 3ft drops, the highest this item is stored is 24ft up in the air on pallets. Naturally, I proceeded to continue my investigation, and by the time my next shift rolled around 3 nights later I had an 8-page technical report on my structural analysis of the bucket with a rough cost-benefit analysis included and a feasibility assessment. I raised a ticket for a damage issue ccing “battleground” in for all updates, attached my report, and listed it publicly in the building.
The next shift I was simply met with a ticket resolved notification.”
1. Demand A Replacement Car Stereo ASAP? Here's The Oldest One We Have
“About 24 years ago, I was a sales manager for the now-defunct Circuit City. This one particular day I was acting as the floor manager. We had the Ops (Operations) manager there as well as the Road Shop Manager (Car Audio).
I get a call from the floor manager’s phone asking me to come to Customer Service to speak to someone. Customer Service is part of the store where customers would come in to return items or have them serviced under warranty, be in the manufacturer or the Circuit City Extended warranty.
This department was headed by the Operations Manager, with a Customer Service Manager and associates working for them.
As a Sales Manager, I was over several of the departments in the “sales” part of the store. For the most part, the Ops manager was the end of the line for Customer Service issues with a rare occasion of something escalating to the Store Manager.
As a Sales Manager, there wasn’t anything I could do, that was beyond what the Ops Manager could do. In general, we didn’t cross those lines unless requested to, or if we were covering for another manager on break or some other circumstance.
This is why a request to speak to someone in Customer Service was out of the ordinary. Also, on this particular day and time, the Store Manager was not there.
So, I walk into the Customer Service department and see a customer standing there with the Road Shop Manager and Operations Manager behind the counter.
I greet the customer politely and step behind the counter as the Operations manager explains that the customer had a car stereo that was not working and that it was well outside the return period (30 days), but still within the manufacturer’s warranty with no Extended Warranty.
The customer was insisting on a new stereo, and it didn’t take long to figure out that he was heated and somewhat belligerent.
To add a bit more context, within Circuit City, Car Stereo was like a Store within a Store. The Road Shop Manager was THE Store Manager for all of the car stereos, and in this instance would have been the “highest” authority on a car stereo issue.
Anyway, I think they needed someone fresh and level-headed to start over with the customer. As I began talking to the customer, the other two managers left the service department. We began discussing the situation with him telling me what he wanted and me responding with, “well, what I CAN do for you is…” We went back and forth for quite a while.
He kept insisting that he wanted a new stereo while becoming louder and more aggressive. I just kept telling him what I could do for him, rather than what I couldn’t do.
The solution I repeatedly offered, was that we could pull his stereo and send it into Service to be repaired under his manufacturer’s warranty and put in a lender stereo he could use until his came back.
Offering the lender radio was generally reserved for someone with a Circuit City extended warranty, which this guy didn’t have. It was pretty much a stalemate. Through it all, I kept a calm, respectful demeanor. It was funny, because this guy, suddenly “broke,” as if breaking character.
He started to grin and said something to the effect of,
“Aw, man! You’re good. Really good. I was just waiting for you to get upset or raise your voice or something and I was going to come across that counter, but you’re good.” I got the impression that he wasn’t exaggerating what he was willing to do.
I responded with, “Great! Let’s get you set up.” I get the Ops manager back in there to process the service, while I shake his hand and head back out to the floor.
On the way to the floor, I cue up the malicious compliance.
I call back to the road shop and talk to the road shop manager. I tell him to find the oldest radio he can to put in his vehicle for a loaner and call me if you have an issue. He’ll be back there in a few minutes.
Unbelievably, the Road Shop Manager finds an old radio with a tape deck instead of a CD player. Now mind you, this is around 1998-1999. In-dash CD players and CD changers were the big thing after the market, but weren’t the standard equipment in new vehicles till the late 90s.
About 45 minutes later, I get a call asking me to come to the road shop. I absolutely know what’s waiting for me. I figure I’ll be spending an hour or so telling the customer, “What I CAN do for you is…”
I go to the road shop and step outside and see the customer from earlier “talking” to the Road Shop manager.
To my surprise, the customer looked up, saw me, and then looking defeated said, “Nevermind.”
He snatched his keys from the Road Shop Manager’s hand, got in his car, and left.
We laughed about this for quite some time afterward.
Figuring some would ask, I’ll add, I never saw the customer again, so I’d assume he received his repaired stereo and had it reinstalled without any issue.”
Another User Comments:
“Some people are used to getting what they want as long as they’re difficult enough. Works way too often, unfortunately.. But not always!” WallabyInTraining