I really look up to my wife. She hates her job every bit as much as I hate mine, although, perhaps, for not exactly all the same reasons. To each their own! Vive la difference!
Hell, sometimes she even makes me feel like a negativity neophyte. Yes, she’s that good and I love her for it.
I made her company famous in a previous post about how they turned Christmas dinner into an H.R. event by making employees roll dice to determine where they would sit. You thought this was Christmas dinner? Nope. It’s a team building exercise!
So far in 2011 there have been layoffs, employees were told there would be no Christmas bonus, and management is forcing employees to use extra vacation days before the end of the year. My wife’s coworker was saving her days, in accordance with company policy, for a trip next year. Now that’s all screwed up. The scuttlebutt is that management wants fewer vacation days on the books so there will be less payouts during the next round of layoffs.
Recently my wife was summoned by the department head. She was informed that she was the worst “smiler” in the workplace and that she needed to improve on her smiling. The “or else” was implied.
The facts are clear. A computer report that tracks productivity in the department shows my wife at the top of the list. The best smiler in the department? She’s dead last.
The intimated threat to my wife: Do a better job at smiling or we’ll keep the most unproductive employee ahead of you. Smile more or you’re the next to go.
Believe it or not, she was actually called in for a meeting about this. Amazing, I know.
Then this same boss gives my wife a little Christmas card. It contained a $5 coupon to a coffee house and a personal note that said, “I hope this makes you smile.”
Using a Christmas card to deliver a shitty boss message like that? You gotta admire a subtly handcrafted and executed implied threat delivered with such festive deftness. I’m in awe.