Doing what I do, I get to meet a lot of wonderful people. For example, managers at each site that think they’re bees knees just because they’ve been there a week longer than the employee who has to clean the bathroom. I’m sure you can see where I’m going with this. If you’re the manager of a gas station making $10.75 an hour, 27 hours a week, in your mid-fifties, then you don’t get to be on a high horse.
I got to experience the wrath of one manager in particular early this afternoon. We’re gonna call her Karen.
Karen is in her mid-fifties, a heavy smoker, overweight, and wears clothes that are way too small for her frame. Karen is the manager of a gas station. Karen is loud. Karen likes to yell at employees in front of customers and laugh about it later. Karen makes a little over a dollar more an hour than her subordinates. Clearly this gives Karen the authority and power to be a terrible person and leader to her employees.
I walked into Karen’s store while she was berating an employee for mopping the floor from the back office to the counter, instead of from the counter to the back office. Karen did this as she walked out of the store to smoke a cigarette and bumped right into me. I apologized, because I’m a nice guy, and Karen scoffed.
This is where I decided to be all business. I let her know what I was there to do and how I planned on doing it, starting with shutting down her site for the next 2 hours. No fuel sales for her. She pitched a fit and waddled back inside to call her manager when I told her I was going to do this whether or not she wanted me to, because her corporate office issued the work order. Store managers get emails regarding these work orders. So, Karen either is too busy being awful to people and smoking to read emails and do her job or the corporate office somehow forgot to send an email to this one and only site. I wonder which one of those things happened?
Mentioning the email was not the right thing to do. Apparently, I have become a bossy guy who just barks orders at people and I need to be fired for my unprofessional demeanor. For those of you who know me, you know I’m the most professional guy out there when it comes to doing my job. For those of you who don’t know me, I’m the most professional guy out there when it comes to doing my job!
Well, before Karen was able to get to a phone, I pulled out my cell phone and called her manager. This person is the district manager. I’m very close with all of the district managers, seeing as how I work on their sites all the time.
Turns out you can’t sneak a sunrise past a rooster. The district manager had received several complaints from employees and customers about Karen and he was well aware of the problem.
All of a sudden, Karen got a call. From her district manager. She was very nice to me and everyone she came in contact with, at least for as long as I was there.
Don’t be a Karen.
Stay classy, and I’ll see you at the next stop.