Author Topic: Epic FU money stories  (Read 2370096 times)

jinga nation

  • Handlebar Stache
  • *****
  • Posts: 2224
  • Location: 'Murica's Johnson
  • Left, Right, Peddlin' Shite
Re: Epic FU money stories
« Reply #4300 on: July 14, 2022, 07:41:47 AM »
Iíve never understood the way some managers are assholes about regular working hours and then expect employees to respond at the drop of a hat when theyíre off.

Because employees will.  I had a job where I worked after hours a lot to support IT infrastructure, and I was always to work on time the next day.  Then we hired a new guy and after his first late night he emailed that he was up late and would thus be in late the next morning.  I was like 'wait?  that's an option?!'.  No one said anything to him, so you can bet I started doing the same thing.  I just didn't know we could do that and I never thought to push the issue.

I work in IT and I've always said that I'm absolutely available out of hours to help or work on a production issue as long as it's fair. It's a two-way street. If they want me to take the call at 3am, they need to let me take a few hours off in the morning, or when convenient.

I've had to explain this (politely) a few times, but it's always worked. If not, then they always reconsider the first time you don't hear the phone. Because they usually realize they need you a lot more during a 3am emergency than they do on a Friday at 3pm.

People very often back off when you push back (nicely) - they know they don't have a leg to stand on. It works because employees never push back.

Used to work that site of IT. Would get calls at odd hours from my boss. I'd ask, "how much of an emergency is this on a Saturday afternoon? Is actual deployment to production going to be on Monday night or tonight? Are the engineers from other teams going to be onsite too? I'm a beer in, it'll take me an hour. Can you order food and drinks for all those coming in? Coffee and pastries/donuts too. Also, we'll be taking off all of Friday in lieu, unless you're paying overtime. Has the customer authorized overtime?"
Had to go in only once in almost 6 years.

And there were assholes who'd suck corporate's bellend and go behind our backs, then F it all up, and we'd have to fix during normal hours, which meant our normal operations got affected, metrics got affected, pay affected. Told the boss, "we'll make you look bad too if you don't have our back and stop the twats from mucking with our stuff". Stopped the nonsense pretty fast when I made it the boss' and Program Manager's problem.

alcon835

  • Pencil Stache
  • ****
  • Posts: 591
Re: Epic FU money stories
« Reply #4301 on: July 14, 2022, 07:43:32 AM »
Iíve never understood the way some managers are assholes about regular working hours and then expect employees to respond at the drop of a hat when theyíre off.

Because employees will.  I had a job where I worked after hours a lot to support IT infrastructure, and I was always to work on time the next day.  Then we hired a new guy and after his first late night he emailed that he was up late and would thus be in late the next morning.  I was like 'wait?  that's an option?!'.  No one said anything to him, so you can bet I started doing the same thing.  I just didn't know we could do that and I never thought to push the issue.

That's very true and great when it works out, which is probably a lot. In fairness, at some places it really isn't an option.. They have such a stranglehold on things that they can afford to lose someone who doesn't stick to the party line and do whatever they ask for the most part. In those cases, you may have to leave - and the culture is often so toxic that it's a big plus when you do. Having savings comes in handy in those situations as well!

There are also places where people just...like to work a lot, I guess? I once worked with a guy who would do all night deployments and then show up to work and put in 9+ hours. I told him he should stay home and recover and he just shrugged his shoulders.

That is possible, of course. I've never seen anyone like that that is not assuming it will lead to a promotion so they are working towards something rather than just liking to work, but there are all kinds of people out there...

Honestly, I think this person was just being taken advantage of and he sorta...went with it? He was critical to the success of IT and there needed to be 5 of him, but he was good enough at what he did and willing to sacrifice his personal life that they just had him do everything.

He needed better leaders above him to force him to stay home more and hire more help. He also needed to set better boundaries. I tried to gently nudge him towards that, but he never wanted to do it so...

learned a lot just watching him do the things I don't want to do unless I am very, very well paid.

rockstache

  • Walrus Stache
  • *******
  • Posts: 7257
  • Age: 9
  • Location: Southeast
Re: Epic FU money stories
« Reply #4302 on: July 14, 2022, 10:58:08 AM »
It is definitely not legal (not just unethical) to treat salaried employees as if they were hourly ones. The onus is on the employer to prove that they are not doing anything wrong, and it's very worth reporting when they are. Let the Employee Rights people sort it out.

Employee unions are great but not always allowed/available.

glacio09

  • 5 O'Clock Shadow
  • *
  • Posts: 18
Re: Epic FU money stories
« Reply #4303 on: July 14, 2022, 11:02:33 AM »
Iíve never understood the way some managers are assholes about regular working hours and then expect employees to respond at the drop of a hat when theyíre off.

Because employees will.  I had a job where I worked after hours a lot to support IT infrastructure, and I was always to work on time the next day.  Then we hired a new guy and after his first late night he emailed that he was up late and would thus be in late the next morning.  I was like 'wait?  that's an option?!'.  No one said anything to him, so you can bet I started doing the same thing.  I just didn't know we could do that and I never thought to push the issue.

That's very true and great when it works out, which is probably a lot. In fairness, at some places it really isn't an option.. They have such a stranglehold on things that they can afford to lose someone who doesn't stick to the party line and do whatever they ask for the most part. In those cases, you may have to leave - and the culture is often so toxic that it's a big plus when you do. Having savings comes in handy in those situations as well!

There are also places where people just...like to work a lot, I guess? I once worked with a guy who would do all night deployments and then show up to work and put in 9+ hours. I told him he should stay home and recover and he just shrugged his shoulders.

That is possible, of course. I've never seen anyone like that that is not assuming it will lead to a promotion so they are working towards something rather than just liking to work, but there are all kinds of people out there...

Honestly, I think this person was just being taken advantage of and he sorta...went with it? He was critical to the success of IT and there needed to be 5 of him, but he was good enough at what he did and willing to sacrifice his personal life that they just had him do everything.

He needed better leaders above him to force him to stay home more and hire more help. He also needed to set better boundaries. I tried to gently nudge him towards that, but he never wanted to do it so...

learned a lot just watching him do the things I don't want to do unless I am very, very well paid.

My husband is dealing with the fallout of this between two coworkers with similar issues.

She is an anal retentive systems tester who absolutely hates having to tell professors no or even I don't know.
He is an IT people pleaser with no hobbies or friends and over bearing parents that he's trying to avoid even though he's in his 40s.
It created a truly toxic symbiotic relationship where she tested every little thing (including complaining about buttons being the wrong shade of blue). He would bend over backwards working 12+ hour days, breaking system requirements and user contracts to do meet her demands.

He got a new job and my husband has taken over the IT help for her department. She is...not amused at his completely reasonable boundaries.

RyanAtTanagra

  • Handlebar Stache
  • *****
  • Posts: 1302
  • Location: Sierra Mountains
Re: Epic FU money stories
« Reply #4304 on: July 14, 2022, 11:14:02 AM »
He got a new job and my husband has taken over the IT help for her department. She is...not amused at his completely reasonable boundaries.

Hope it's not stressing him out.  I tend to enjoy setting boundaries.

solon

  • Handlebar Stache
  • *****
  • Posts: 2185
  • Age: 1821
  • Location: CO
Re: Epic FU money stories
« Reply #4305 on: July 14, 2022, 12:49:53 PM »
He got a new job and my husband has taken over the IT help for her department. She is...not amused at his completely reasonable boundaries.

This is the part I want to hear more about.

Wolfpack Mustachian

  • Handlebar Stache
  • *****
  • Posts: 1552
Re: Epic FU money stories
« Reply #4306 on: July 14, 2022, 03:21:12 PM »
Iíve never understood the way some managers are assholes about regular working hours and then expect employees to respond at the drop of a hat when theyíre off.

Because employees will.  I had a job where I worked after hours a lot to support IT infrastructure, and I was always to work on time the next day.  Then we hired a new guy and after his first late night he emailed that he was up late and would thus be in late the next morning.  I was like 'wait?  that's an option?!'.  No one said anything to him, so you can bet I started doing the same thing.  I just didn't know we could do that and I never thought to push the issue.

That's very true and great when it works out, which is probably a lot. In fairness, at some places it really isn't an option.. They have such a stranglehold on things that they can afford to lose someone who doesn't stick to the party line and do whatever they ask for the most part. In those cases, you may have to leave - and the culture is often so toxic that it's a big plus when you do. Having savings comes in handy in those situations as well!

There are also places where people just...like to work a lot, I guess? I once worked with a guy who would do all night deployments and then show up to work and put in 9+ hours. I told him he should stay home and recover and he just shrugged his shoulders.

That is possible, of course. I've never seen anyone like that that is not assuming it will lead to a promotion so they are working towards something rather than just liking to work, but there are all kinds of people out there...

Honestly, I think this person was just being taken advantage of and he sorta...went with it? He was critical to the success of IT and there needed to be 5 of him, but he was good enough at what he did and willing to sacrifice his personal life that they just had him do everything.

He needed better leaders above him to force him to stay home more and hire more help. He also needed to set better boundaries. I tried to gently nudge him towards that, but he never wanted to do it so...

learned a lot just watching him do the things I don't want to do unless I am very, very well paid.

I think that's probably the case for the vast, vast majority of people. We must set our own boundaries or we'll be taken advantage of almost every time. I was certainly one of them. To the other point from before, I just wanted to balance out a little these stories, as wonderful and fun as they are, with the reality that sometimes establishing boundaries and pushing back will get you pushed out of the company. It's still extremely important to set the boundaries, but I think it's important to be ready for that possibility.

Zamboni

  • Magnum Stache
  • ******
  • Posts: 3343
Re: Epic FU money stories
« Reply #4307 on: July 15, 2022, 07:19:26 PM »
"occasionally I did have to defend their absence to other managers"

Ugh, that's annoying! I used to have to deal with this at a job. There were two other peer managers who were super anal and controlling about the exact hours their people were in the building. For whatever reason, they felt I should also treat people in my group like lazy toddlers and criminals who wouldn't do any work if not for our ever watchful eyes.

I tended to be more flexible, especially for the particularly competent and productive people on my team. For example, one guy wanted to take a college class to finish his degree, but it meant he wouldn't get to work until 10 am twice a week. He was a reliable person who had been at the company several years, and he said he was willing to stay until 6:30 pm on those days. Was I okay with that? Of course I was. But you know it led to another manager whining to me about their people complaining or (more likely) "reporting" him for coming in late. Eyeroll.

I told her that of course I knew he was coming in later, that it was part of an agreement we had made, that he stayed later, and I knew he stayed later because I happen to work more hours than literally everyone, so I'm there in the morning when her whining people arrive and still there when he leaves at 6:30 (kind of a fib and not always true about the hours, especially since I liked to take 2 hour lunches, but the few times I did happen to be there that late everyone was gone but him and me). I said to tell any complainers they should focus on being excellent in their own work rather than worrying about what other people were doing. I follow up with the jab that if they actually were busy, then they wouldn't even notice what hours people in unrelated groups were working. Basically I used the "clearly your people don't have enough to do if they are worried about this" approach. The best defense is a good offense.

Another time a different manager came to me to ask about refusing to pay logged overtime. One employee in his group and one employee in my group had been working on a project together that required some evening overtime. Part of it was travel time to and from another site, but policy was that we were to compensate them for that. I told them to keep track of their overtime and put it on the next timecards (we didn't have a clock to punch, it was self reported).

On the next timecard, my employee had put 8 hours of overtime spread over the week. The other manager then came to me with his employee's timecard in his hand. How many hours had my employee put? he asked. 8, I said. He felt there was no way they had each worked 8 extra hours. I said I had no reason to believe that they didn't. He then said he thought they were trying to count time they had stopped to eat on the road, that they were "in cahoots," that he was only going to pay his employee for 6 hours, and that I should only pay my employee for 6 hours.

Just like that, he decided 8 hours reported should be 6 hours paid.

I did some quick math in my head and said "so you want me to accuse one of the best employees in my group of lying over something that amounts to $85?" He said he thought they were lying. I said "listen, I can easily see that it was 8 hours extra last week, that makes sense. And I'm not going to challenge this at all. I will not ask about this. Period. My person is getting paid what they wrote on their card. You do whatever you want."

What an idiot.

I'm not sure I was the best manager, but I was definitely never the worst.

I have lots of other examples.

pasadenafr

  • Stubble
  • **
  • Posts: 249
  • Age: 48
  • Location: Upper Left Corner, USA
Re: Epic FU money stories
« Reply #4308 on: July 15, 2022, 10:46:56 PM »
I tended to be more flexible, especially for the particularly competent and productive people on my team. For example, one guy wanted to take a college class to finish his degree, but it meant he wouldn't get to work until 10 am twice a week. He was a reliable person who had been at the company several years, and he said he was willing to stay until 6:30 pm on those days. Was I okay with that? Of course I was. But you know it led to another manager whining to me about their people complaining or (more likely) "reporting" him for coming in late. Eyeroll.

Damn, this reminds me of a previous job. We were supposed to work in shifts starting at 7am or 8am. That was kind of grandfathered in from older times when we were actually doing a lot of support work, but it didn't really make much sense anymore. I was working on a few projects with a global team (people in Europe and US East Coast, when I was in California).

And so I had a million early-morning calls, often back-to-back starting at 6am, often earlier, several days a week. Of course, I was taking them from home, and at first, my manager just said to ping him when I knew I wouldn't make it to the office at the start of our "shift".

That happened like 3 or 4 times a week. And he told me that I had to come in on time, because other people would "see me coming in late and complain or think I was treated differently", and to "keep the peace" (another of his words was "status quo"). I'm not even sure that was true, or if he was trying to avoid that possibility. I said I can't, when I have calls from 6am to 9am, how can I be in the office at 8am?

He told me to come in at 6am to take the call, or earlier so I could be ready at 6am.

I didn't. Told him that when they all came in to work, I had already been working for 2 or 3 hours, it was easy to verify since I was online all that time (and I wasn't exactly alone in those calls). And it was unfair that I would be the one punished because I was working at 6am.

After several months I also told him it was HIS job to make sure people in HIS team understood what was going on and stopped acting like toddlers. That I wasn't going to come in before 6am almost every day just to make his life easier. I also wasn't going to ask 5-10 people in Europe and India to stay at work an hour or two later because I had to commute.

That lasted about 2 years. At some point, he pissed me off so much that I started billing those hours, because of course there was no way I could leave early before the end of the official shift. People would have seen me leave!

He never did anything about it. Never tried to help me organize my day better, never put his foot down to explain the situation to the rest of the team. Never took any action against me, because at the end of the day, he knew I was right, I was doing my job, my project stakeholders were happy and not shy about saying it, and there was no-one else to do that specific project.

OTOH I also never got a promotion lol.

Another one of my teammates was in the same situation, but his team leader didn't care.

Worst manager I ever left.


lutorm

  • Pencil Stache
  • ****
  • Posts: 707
  • Location: A large island in the middle of the Pacific Ocean
Re: Epic FU money stories
« Reply #4309 on: July 15, 2022, 11:22:35 PM »
That is possible, of course. I've never seen anyone like that that is not assuming it will lead to a promotion so they are working towards something rather than just liking to work, but there are all kinds of people out there...
We have plenty of people coming to work for us straight out of college who thinks working there is just the coolest thing and spends all their waking hours at work. Makes taking a stand for work life balance a bit more conspicuous...

ATtiny85

  • Stubble
  • **
  • Posts: 235
  • Location: Midwest
Re: Epic FU money stories
« Reply #4310 on: July 16, 2022, 04:36:30 PM »
That is possible, of course. I've never seen anyone like that that is not assuming it will lead to a promotion so they are working towards something rather than just liking to work, but there are all kinds of people out there...
We have plenty of people coming to work for us straight out of college who thinks working there is just the coolest thing and spends all their waking hours at work. Makes taking a stand for work life balance a bit more conspicuous...

Yeah, I remember being a bit guilty of that. Now, 20+ years later, I just let them newbies churn out work while I am living life.

Gronnie

  • Pencil Stache
  • ****
  • Posts: 507
  • Age: 36
  • Location: MN
Re: Epic FU money stories
« Reply #4311 on: July 16, 2022, 05:04:58 PM »
Worst manager I ever left.

As the saying goes -- people usually don't quit jobs, they quit managers.

pasadenafr

  • Stubble
  • **
  • Posts: 249
  • Age: 48
  • Location: Upper Left Corner, USA
Re: Epic FU money stories
« Reply #4312 on: July 16, 2022, 10:46:58 PM »
Worst manager I ever left.

As the saying goes -- people usually don't quit jobs, they quit managers.

To be fair, there were several reasons why I left, and while he wasn't the main one, he was definitely on the list.

LennStar

  • Magnum Stache
  • ******
  • Posts: 2923
  • Location: Germany
Re: Epic FU money stories
« Reply #4313 on: July 17, 2022, 03:37:38 AM »
Worst manager I ever left.

As the saying goes -- people usually don't quit jobs, they quit managers.
Isn't it stragne that so many people complain about really bad managers, every study ever on the topic fround that at least 1/3 is a bad manager... and still nobody says "get rid of them" even though there are enough examples of self-organized companies? (Which in the end generally have some sort of manager, but only because there is work to be done, not to order people around.)

pasadenafr

  • Stubble
  • **
  • Posts: 249
  • Age: 48
  • Location: Upper Left Corner, USA
Re: Epic FU money stories
« Reply #4314 on: July 17, 2022, 07:15:29 AM »
Worst manager I ever left.

As the saying goes -- people usually don't quit jobs, they quit managers.
Isn't it stragne that so many people complain about really bad managers, every study ever on the topic fround that at least 1/3 is a bad manager... and still nobody says "get rid of them" even though there are enough examples of self-organized companies? (Which in the end generally have some sort of manager, but only because there is work to be done, not to order people around.)

That's probably because a bad manager from the employee's point of view can be a good manager from the company's point of view. This one was a good little soldier, and since most of us in the team were self-sufficient, it worked for them. If it hadn't, maybe they'd have trained him (and the others).

Also, from the company's POV, a bad manager is better than no manager. They still (mostly) keep people in line, do some of the grunt work that needs doing, and they take the blame.

Loren Ver

  • CM*MW 2023 Attendees
  • Handlebar Stache
  • *
  • Posts: 1029
  • Location: Midwest USA
  • I Retired. Yah!
Re: Epic FU money stories
« Reply #4315 on: July 17, 2022, 08:40:55 AM »
Worst manager I ever left.

As the saying goes -- people usually don't quit jobs, they quit managers.
Isn't it stragne that so many people complain about really bad managers, every study ever on the topic fround that at least 1/3 is a bad manager... and still nobody says "get rid of them" even though there are enough examples of self-organized companies? (Which in the end generally have some sort of manager, but only because there is work to be done, not to order people around.)

That's probably because a bad manager from the employee's point of view can be a good manager from the company's point of view. This one was a good little soldier, and since most of us in the team were self-sufficient, it worked for them. If it hadn't, maybe they'd have trained him (and the others).

Also, from the company's POV, a bad manager is better than no manager. They still (mostly) keep people in line, do some of the grunt work that needs doing, and they take the blame.

And also, not every manager is a good or bad manager for all employees or employee types.  A few managers are truly great leaders, but most are on the bell curve.  Someone that I might call a horrible might be great for a different type of employee.  Sure a great manager should be able to tell the difference, but this doesn't make a nominal manager (that probably got substandard training) the devil. 

A very good leader high level taught me this during my mid career.  He said, even he had employees that hated his management and that he had had leaders that were good leaders that he just didn't mesh with.  After the light bulb went off I started looking around and really started to see it clearly what I kinda saw only fuzzily before. 

Of course I also had some really terrible leaders/managers that were just "wow, really!?!?" bad.  So those exist too.

Loren

Plina

  • Pencil Stache
  • ****
  • Posts: 663
Re: Epic FU money stories
« Reply #4316 on: July 17, 2022, 10:10:37 AM »
Worst manager I ever left.

As the saying goes -- people usually don't quit jobs, they quit managers.
Isn't it stragne that so many people complain about really bad managers, every study ever on the topic fround that at least 1/3 is a bad manager... and still nobody says "get rid of them" even though there are enough examples of self-organized companies? (Which in the end generally have some sort of manager, but only because there is work to be done, not to order people around.)

That's probably because a bad manager from the employee's point of view can be a good manager from the company's point of view. This one was a good little soldier, and since most of us in the team were self-sufficient, it worked for them. If it hadn't, maybe they'd have trained him (and the others).

Also, from the company's POV, a bad manager is better than no manager. They still (mostly) keep people in line, do some of the grunt work that needs doing, and they take the blame.

And someone that you see as a bad manager can be a good manager from someone else point of view. I have had managers that might be seen as bad managers by some but they worked really well with me because they didnít interfere with my work and I could basically do as I liked as long as I did my work. I have also had managers that tried to micromanage everything which made me hate going to work. He was a nice guy when a colleague but a lousy boss. He actually left the company shortly after me as he lost a lot of employees and I heard afterwards that they were not happy with his leadership.

Wolfpack Mustachian

  • Handlebar Stache
  • *****
  • Posts: 1552
Re: Epic FU money stories
« Reply #4317 on: July 17, 2022, 10:26:51 AM »
Worst manager I ever left.

As the saying goes -- people usually don't quit jobs, they quit managers.
Isn't it stragne that so many people complain about really bad managers, every study ever on the topic fround that at least 1/3 is a bad manager... and still nobody says "get rid of them" even though there are enough examples of self-organized companies? (Which in the end generally have some sort of manager, but only because there is work to be done, not to order people around.)

That's probably because a bad manager from the employee's point of view can be a good manager from the company's point of view. This one was a good little soldier, and since most of us in the team were self-sufficient, it worked for them. If it hadn't, maybe they'd have trained him (and the others).

Also, from the company's POV, a bad manager is better than no manager. They still (mostly) keep people in line, do some of the grunt work that needs doing, and they take the blame.

And someone that you see as a bad manager can be a good manager from someone else point of view. I have had managers that might be seen as bad managers by some but they worked really well with me because they didnít interfere with my work and I could basically do as I liked as long as I did my work. I have also had managers that tried to micromanage everything which made me hate going to work. He was a nice guy when a colleague but a lousy boss. He actually left the company shortly after me as he lost a lot of employees and I heard afterwards that they were not happy with his leadership.

I think the difference is there are styles of management and skilled and unskilled managers. Skilled managers can vary management styles for employees. My first couple years out of college having little experience, I needed much more "micromanagment" to perform well. 8 years later, micromanaging drove me nuts. A skilled/trained manager can go between styles and help people wherever they are at.

I think the good/bad labels are often thrown around when an unskilled manager doesn't use the style that benefits the particular person. That's not the same as a good/bad manager IMO. To be a good vs. bad manager, it takes other things - sticking up for your employees, listening and trusting them, acknowledging that they may know more than you do on a topic, etc. I can work around different management styles and have in the past. I can't work past a manager that doesn't trust what I have to say in areas I'm knowledgable about or that hang me out to dry for their mismanagement of priorities or whatever the case may be. I can even help an unskilled manager/new manager with things they don't know.

I do think people call managers bad because of the skilled part - and they can certainly drive employees away because they are unskilled, but there are a great number of managers out there who are truly bad managers. While I've seen unskilled managers improve to be skilled, better managers, I have never seen bad managers become good managers.

pasadenafr

  • Stubble
  • **
  • Posts: 249
  • Age: 48
  • Location: Upper Left Corner, USA
Re: Epic FU money stories
« Reply #4318 on: July 17, 2022, 11:30:07 AM »
Worst manager I ever left.

As the saying goes -- people usually don't quit jobs, they quit managers.
Isn't it stragne that so many people complain about really bad managers, every study ever on the topic fround that at least 1/3 is a bad manager... and still nobody says "get rid of them" even though there are enough examples of self-organized companies? (Which in the end generally have some sort of manager, but only because there is work to be done, not to order people around.)

That's probably because a bad manager from the employee's point of view can be a good manager from the company's point of view. This one was a good little soldier, and since most of us in the team were self-sufficient, it worked for them. If it hadn't, maybe they'd have trained him (and the others).

Also, from the company's POV, a bad manager is better than no manager. They still (mostly) keep people in line, do some of the grunt work that needs doing, and they take the blame.

And someone that you see as a bad manager can be a good manager from someone else point of view. I have had managers that might be seen as bad managers by some but they worked really well with me because they didnít interfere with my work and I could basically do as I liked as long as I did my work. I have also had managers that tried to micromanage everything which made me hate going to work. He was a nice guy when a colleague but a lousy boss. He actually left the company shortly after me as he lost a lot of employees and I heard afterwards that they were not happy with his leadership.

I think the difference is there are styles of management and skilled and unskilled managers. Skilled managers can vary management styles for employees. My first couple years out of college having little experience, I needed much more "micromanagment" to perform well. 8 years later, micromanaging drove me nuts. A skilled/trained manager can go between styles and help people wherever they are at.

I think the good/bad labels are often thrown around when an unskilled manager doesn't use the style that benefits the particular person. That's not the same as a good/bad manager IMO. To be a good vs. bad manager, it takes other things - sticking up for your employees, listening and trusting them, acknowledging that they may know more than you do on a topic, etc. I can work around different management styles and have in the past. I can't work past a manager that doesn't trust what I have to say in areas I'm knowledgable about or that hang me out to dry for their mismanagement of priorities or whatever the case may be. I can even help an unskilled manager/new manager with things they don't know.

I do think people call managers bad because of the skilled part - and they can certainly drive employees away because they are unskilled, but there are a great number of managers out there who are truly bad managers. While I've seen unskilled managers improve to be skilled, better managers, I have never seen bad managers become good managers.

Completely agree with that. This particular one was a bit of all of that, though. He used to be a member of my team, good techie, but no leader. I always felt like they gave him the promotion then let him figure it out. He wasn't properly trained -- annual reviews and team meetings were SO "manager for dummies" it was almost funny. That's 100% on the company and his own manager, not on him.

But he was also very ineffective, always focusing on the little things that didn't matter, telling us whatever he thought we wanted to hear, no matter if it was true or not, and spouting corporate BS all the time. I don't think he ever fought for anything on our behalf. His focus was always on keeping the "status quo" (his words) going, so he didn't have to actually manage anything and kept his job easier. Those who played that game well were favorited. Obviously that fits in the "not my style of manager" box. Thankfully no micromanagement.

While most of us liked him as a person (I did), almost none of us respected him as a manager.

We were a pretty tight team, but after a couple of years, we were nothing more than coworkers. There was no "team" anymore. That, to me, is the mark of a bad manager, however you want to look at it.

Pretty sure he was considered "good" from the perspective of the company, though. As I said, good soldier, and we still did our job well enough, because we were a highly skilled team, and mostly ignored the BS.

Plina

  • Pencil Stache
  • ****
  • Posts: 663
Re: Epic FU money stories
« Reply #4319 on: July 17, 2022, 11:51:44 AM »
Worst manager I ever left.

As the saying goes -- people usually don't quit jobs, they quit managers.
Isn't it stragne that so many people complain about really bad managers, every study ever on the topic fround that at least 1/3 is a bad manager... and still nobody says "get rid of them" even though there are enough examples of self-organized companies? (Which in the end generally have some sort of manager, but only because there is work to be done, not to order people around.)

That's probably because a bad manager from the employee's point of view can be a good manager from the company's point of view. This one was a good little soldier, and since most of us in the team were self-sufficient, it worked for them. If it hadn't, maybe they'd have trained him (and the others).

Also, from the company's POV, a bad manager is better than no manager. They still (mostly) keep people in line, do some of the grunt work that needs doing, and they take the blame.

And someone that you see as a bad manager can be a good manager from someone else point of view. I have had managers that might be seen as bad managers by some but they worked really well with me because they didnít interfere with my work and I could basically do as I liked as long as I did my work. I have also had managers that tried to micromanage everything which made me hate going to work. He was a nice guy when a colleague but a lousy boss. He actually left the company shortly after me as he lost a lot of employees and I heard afterwards that they were not happy with his leadership.

I think the difference is there are styles of management and skilled and unskilled managers. Skilled managers can vary management styles for employees. My first couple years out of college having little experience, I needed much more "micromanagment" to perform well. 8 years later, micromanaging drove me nuts. A skilled/trained manager can go between styles and help people wherever they are at.

I think the good/bad labels are often thrown around when an unskilled manager doesn't use the style that benefits the particular person. That's not the same as a good/bad manager IMO. To be a good vs. bad manager, it takes other things - sticking up for your employees, listening and trusting them, acknowledging that they may know more than you do on a topic, etc. I can work around different management styles and have in the past. I can't work past a manager that doesn't trust what I have to say in areas I'm knowledgable about or that hang me out to dry for their mismanagement of priorities or whatever the case may be. I can even help an unskilled manager/new manager with things they don't know.

I do think people call managers bad because of the skilled part - and they can certainly drive employees away because they are unskilled, but there are a great number of managers out there who are truly bad managers. While I've seen unskilled managers improve to be skilled, better managers, I have never seen bad managers become good managers.

Of course there are a difference in guiding an unexperienced employee and someone more senior as in this case. In this case it was not the only thing.

 When I told him in january I planned a leave of absence for studying and travel with start in August. his response was that he was disappointed because they had invested in me and wondered if I could postpone it to January next year so they could find a replacement. An employer are obligated to give a leave of absence in the same way as paternity or maternity leave. He would never have told that to someone that was planning a leave due to kids. He was later going on his third paternity leave, which is as it should but donít give childfree employees crap for taking time off. He had seven months to find a replacement and did he manage to do that. NO! That day he really lost me. When I got back, I worked there only for a couple of months before I found something else.
« Last Edit: July 18, 2022, 05:31:24 AM by Plina »

Michael in ABQ

  • Handlebar Stache
  • *****
  • Posts: 1946
Re: Epic FU money stories
« Reply #4320 on: July 17, 2022, 01:05:34 PM »
Worst manager I ever left.

As the saying goes -- people usually don't quit jobs, they quit managers.
Isn't it strange that so many people complain about really bad managers, every study ever on the topic found that at least 1/3 is a bad manager... and still nobody says "get rid of them" even though there are enough examples of self-organized companies? (Which in the end generally have some sort of manager, but only because there is work to be done, not to order people around.)

The person in a position to fire the bad manager will probably be saddled with the work of that manager. It could easily take months to replace them, especially in a large bureaucratic organization.

In organizations that promote from within, the best worker rarely makes the best manager. But most organizations are willing to accept that tradeoff because it provides an incentive to perform and get promoted to manager. If you were the top performer and saw a colleague, get promoted above you (who may have a better aptitude for management) it's likely to cause resentment and now maybe that company loses a top performer.

Gronnie

  • Pencil Stache
  • ****
  • Posts: 507
  • Age: 36
  • Location: MN
Re: Epic FU money stories
« Reply #4321 on: July 17, 2022, 08:29:07 PM »
Worst manager I ever left.

As the saying goes -- people usually don't quit jobs, they quit managers.
Isn't it strange that so many people complain about really bad managers, every study ever on the topic found that at least 1/3 is a bad manager... and still nobody says "get rid of them" even though there are enough examples of self-organized companies? (Which in the end generally have some sort of manager, but only because there is work to be done, not to order people around.)

The person in a position to fire the bad manager will probably be saddled with the work of that manager. It could easily take months to replace them, especially in a large bureaucratic organization.

In organizations that promote from within, the best worker rarely makes the best manager. But most organizations are willing to accept that tradeoff because it provides an incentive to perform and get promoted to manager. If you were the top performer and saw a colleague, get promoted above you (who may have a better aptitude for management) it's likely to cause resentment and now maybe that company loses a top performer.

This is why I like tech where the best ICs can be paid as much if not more than their manager.

gooki

  • Magnum Stache
  • ******
  • Posts: 2840
  • Location: NZ
    • My FIRE journal
Re: Epic FU money stories
« Reply #4322 on: July 18, 2022, 01:04:42 AM »
Worst manager I ever left.

As the saying goes -- people usually don't quit jobs, they quit managers.
Isn't it stragne that so many people complain about really bad managers, every study ever on the topic fround that at least 1/3 is a bad manager... and still nobody says "get rid of them" even though there are enough examples of self-organized companies? (Which in the end generally have some sort of manager, but only because there is work to be done, not to order people around.)

FWIW Elon Musk routinely culls middle management. A few years back there was a bit of noise around the clearing out of middle management from the SpaceX Starlink division. In retrospect the outcome seems very positive.

It's also my wife's speciality getting rid of bad managers.
« Last Edit: July 18, 2022, 03:36:19 AM by gooki »

glacio09

  • 5 O'Clock Shadow
  • *
  • Posts: 18
Re: Epic FU money stories
« Reply #4323 on: July 29, 2022, 07:31:55 AM »
He got a new job and my husband has taken over the IT help for her department. She is...not amused at his completely reasonable boundaries.

This is the part I want to hear more about.

In the past my husband's team waited until the end of summer break (it's a college) to set up the computers for the next school year, which meant having a one month scramble to do everything. With less people the bosses said that it was completely undoable this year. She refused to do testing at the beginning of July because "that isn't when it's done". My husband got an email at 9 oclock last night demanding he fix a bug that she finally got around to finding. He has permission to wait until working hours to respond to non-emergencies. The phrase failure to plan on your part does not make an emergency on mine is becoming a daily utterance.

Dicey

  • Senior Mustachian
  • ********
  • Posts: 19221
  • Age: 64
  • Location: NorCal
Re: Epic FU money stories
« Reply #4324 on: July 29, 2022, 08:07:28 AM »
He got a new job and my husband has taken over the IT help for her department. She is...not amused at his completely reasonable boundaries.

This is the part I want to hear more about.

In the past my husband's team waited until the end of summer break (it's a college) to set up the computers for the next school year, which meant having a one month scramble to do everything. With less people the bosses said that it was completely undoable this year. She refused to do testing at the beginning of July because "that isn't when it's done". My husband got an email at 9 oclock last night demanding he fix a bug that she finally got around to finding. He has permission to wait until working hours to respond to non-emergencies. The phrase failure to plan on your part does not make an emergency on mine is becoming a daily utterance.
If nothing else, this keeps one's incentive to reach FIRE burning hot...

lifeisshort123

  • Stubble
  • **
  • Posts: 245
Re: Epic FU money stories
« Reply #4325 on: July 29, 2022, 10:45:01 AM »
Yes, finding ways to limit the amount of abuse you have are important.  I find in many instances that involves getting out of the corporate world as quickly as possible.

glacio09

  • 5 O'Clock Shadow
  • *
  • Posts: 18
Re: Epic FU money stories
« Reply #4326 on: July 29, 2022, 10:56:42 AM »
Yes, finding ways to limit the amount of abuse you have are important.  I find in many instances that involves getting out of the corporate world as quickly as possible.

It's actually why my husband is in this job. Generally he gets a lot less shit being in academia than corporate (or as he puts it, the same amount of shit but much better smelling). There's a lot of perks but he gets paid less. So the FU part is that he told his boss that he was working this job because it was enjoyable. It is no longer enjoyable. He needs a raise, the other department to back up, and more help or he's getting a job being paid twice as much elsewhere. In my mind if he's going to be miserable might as well be growing the stache faster, but as a good partner I'm actually hoping that his job gets it's act together.

ExitViaTheCashRamp

  • Bristles
  • ***
  • Posts: 254
Re: Epic FU money stories
« Reply #4327 on: July 31, 2022, 11:36:12 AM »
Accidental abuse of system....    talking about time in lieu reminded me of my own accidental abuse of it.

 20 years ago, I moved teams on to a daytime helpdesk for an external customer (7.5 hour shift), I was on-call for the night shift for a different helpdesk for totally different customers (12 hour shift, 4 days on, 4 days off). The two 'helpdesks' had nothing in common - no common systems. procedures or staff -- nearest 'join' was the manager 3 levels up who I spoke to perhaps 3 times in five years... and one of those was when he wanted to borrow some change for a vending machine.

 Both desks had weekend working -- the daytime desk on a scheduled rota, any overtime was time & a half for saturday and double time on sunday. The night desk had no overtime special overtime rates since it was covered in the shift bonus (the perm guys had a 25% bonus).

 I was given a 12.5% shift bonus to be on call and told to take time off in lieu for preference instead of claiming overtime. This suited me fine, I had just brought a house so the 12.5% added nicely to mortgage payments and time off during the day meant more time with the wife. Only thing was.... no one told me my assumption that the time and a half and double time applied to time off in lieu and one of the night shift guys happened to be sick a lot on weekends...   

 So when I got called out to cover, I did 4 x 12 hour shifts... but I am on paid for 37.5 based on (5 x7.5 hour day shifts) and more often than not covering a weekend after doing half or more a week in the office on the day shift. So I took the time off in lieu... and at the overtime rate (e.g. working sat (12 hours x 1.5) & sun (12 hours x 2) meant the day shift didn't see me for a good looooonnnggg time. This went on for over a year until it was discovered in a random conversation and I was then pushed into taking the overtime. That first month I gleefully handed them an overtime bill of 50 hours thanks to weekend working.

 I didn't mean to abuse the time in lieu... I honestly thought I was doing the right thing - with no management oversight (i.e. day shift lead never spoke to the night shift lead) - it was the best paid and relaxing job of my early career.

10dollarsatatime

  • Pencil Stache
  • ****
  • Posts: 658
  • Age: 38
  • Location: Utah
Re: Epic FU money stories
« Reply #4328 on: August 11, 2022, 10:20:15 PM »
Posted in my journal, but I think it belongs here, too.

I've been covering a second full time position (my boss') on top of my own for more than six months.  The first three were understandable.  It was FMLA.  We weren't sure what the outcome would be.  No temporary acting pay, but it seemed crass to complain and I didn't need it.  Sadly, just after the FMLA was up and we were deciding how to move forward, my boss passed.  This sucked.  I liked the guy.  And I'd been working in his organization for nearly 15 years.

The following Monday, I was designated as officially temporary acting general manager, which came with a 10% pay bump.  The last time I had been through this, I was officially promoted within five weeks.  This time, they didn't open the position for a month.  They didn't interview until three weeks ago.  By now, I've been covering two full-time positions for the six months.  We've been busier than ever for the past two years, and we've been understaffed.  To cap it off with this... I got to the point where I was done.  I was/am ticked that they dragged this on for so long.  I'm exhausted.  I have a business degree now, so i have options.  AND my vacation/sick leave/comp time buyout is up to $23,000.  (I calculate it whenever I'm having a bad day at work.)

So.  I withdrew my application for GM, perfectly willing and happy to walk away and torpedo my career.

I got a phone call within ten minutes.  I was treated to breakfast while I explained that I was done and why I was done.  A somewhat panicky Department Director promised to move heaven and earth for me.  To pretend that I'd never sent the email.  I pointed out that I had copied (HR guy).  "I can kill (HR guy)".  He asked me to think about it.

The next discussion was me telling him that I had to do what was best for me, and if that was the best for the theater, that's great, but if it wasn't, I had no qualms about walking away.  I also informed him that I wouldn't stick around for my current job.  It was the promotion or nothing.

I got a job offer today.  With a $17,000/yr raise and a healthy bit of vacation.

I guess I'm staying.

Thanks FU money!

LennStar

  • Magnum Stache
  • ******
  • Posts: 2923
  • Location: Germany
Re: Epic FU money stories
« Reply #4329 on: August 11, 2022, 11:10:21 PM »
Nice!

But you should get a Bonus - even if it's just a week of free time - for the long time you covered.

zolotiyeruki

  • Magnum Stache
  • ******
  • Posts: 4940
  • Location: State: Denial
Re: Epic FU money stories
« Reply #4330 on: August 12, 2022, 08:58:27 AM »
The next discussion was me telling him that I had to do what was best for me, and if that was the best for the theater, that's great, but if it wasn't, I had no qualms about walking away.  I also informed him that I wouldn't stick around for my current job.  It was the promotion or nothing.

I got a job offer today.  With a $17,000/yr raise and a healthy bit of vacation.

I guess I'm staying.
That is an awesome story, thanks for sharing!  Sorry to hear about your boss passing.  That must be awful for his family as well.

Captain FIRE

  • Pencil Stache
  • ****
  • Posts: 933
Re: Epic FU money stories
« Reply #4331 on: August 12, 2022, 09:53:08 AM »
I didn't mean to abuse the time in lieu... I honestly thought I was doing the right thing - with no management oversight (i.e. day shift lead never spoke to the night shift lead) - it was the best paid and relaxing job of my early career.

At my job, this is indeed how it works.  If you choose to take it in lieu (you can't be forced), then you get the time and half instead of pay and a half after 40 hrs.  (Normal schedule is 37.5, so the first 2.5 is straight time.  Always incentivized me to stack overtime and work a bunch in a week rather than ~2-3 hrs for a few weeks.  But also generally not a need to work overtime if I only had 2-3 hours extra to do.)

bmjohnson35

  • Pencil Stache
  • ****
  • Posts: 543
Re: Epic FU money stories
« Reply #4332 on: August 12, 2022, 02:36:39 PM »
Posted in my journal, but I think it belongs here, too.

I've been covering a second full time position (my boss') on top of my own for more than six months.  The first three were understandable.  It was FMLA.  We weren't sure what the outcome would be.  No temporary acting pay, but it seemed crass to complain and I didn't need it.  Sadly, just after the FMLA was up and we were deciding how to move forward, my boss passed.  This sucked.  I liked the guy.  And I'd been working in his organization for nearly 15 years.

The following Monday, I was designated as officially temporary acting general manager, which came with a 10% pay bump.  The last time I had been through this, I was officially promoted within five weeks.  This time, they didn't open the position for a month.  They didn't interview until three weeks ago.  By now, I've been covering two full-time positions for the six months.  We've been busier than ever for the past two years, and we've been understaffed.  To cap it off with this... I got to the point where I was done.  I was/am ticked that they dragged this on for so long.  I'm exhausted.  I have a business degree now, so i have options.  AND my vacation/sick leave/comp time buyout is up to $23,000.  (I calculate it whenever I'm having a bad day at work.)

So.  I withdrew my application for GM, perfectly willing and happy to walk away and torpedo my career.

I got a phone call within ten minutes.  I was treated to breakfast while I explained that I was done and why I was done.  A somewhat panicky Department Director promised to move heaven and earth for me.  To pretend that I'd never sent the email.  I pointed out that I had copied (HR guy).  "I can kill (HR guy)".  He asked me to think about it.

The next discussion was me telling him that I had to do what was best for me, and if that was the best for the theater, that's great, but if it wasn't, I had no qualms about walking away.  I also informed him that I wouldn't stick around for my current job.  It was the promotion or nothing.

I got a job offer today.  With a $17,000/yr raise and a healthy bit of vacation.

I guess I'm staying.

Thanks FU money!

I don't know the size of your organization, but people/positions are often "cogs in the machine." They may not have dragged it out intentionally and usually not personal (on their part).  FU money is definitely helpful when dealing with matters of this nature.  Happy to hear it worked out.

mm1970

  • Senior Mustachian
  • ********
  • Posts: 10007
Re: Epic FU money stories
« Reply #4333 on: August 12, 2022, 03:56:18 PM »
The next discussion was me telling him that I had to do what was best for me, and if that was the best for the theater, that's great, but if it wasn't, I had no qualms about walking away.  I also informed him that I wouldn't stick around for my current job.  It was the promotion or nothing.

I got a job offer today.  With a $17,000/yr raise and a healthy bit of vacation.

I guess I'm staying.
That is an awesome story, thanks for sharing!  Sorry to hear about your boss passing.  That must be awful for his family as well.
Great story, and sorry about the boss.