Friday, April 15, 2011

When the smoke clears, I wonder who will be left standing, besides me?

I see mutiny on the horizon, at work.  Rather than be concerned, I'm finding this all quite amusing!

Here is what happened.

I work for a national restaurant chain.  We were part of a 7 restaurant franchise.  Um... where I work, it's always Friday.  Got it?  Good!

Several months ago, we got word that our owner was selling off the franchise to a company out of California.  Big changes were a comin'!  Five of the seven stores were sold.  We were told this new company would be running the stores like the corporate stores (i.e. STRICT!!)  I heard some grumbling from some of my fellow employees.

I wasn't nervous about that.  I did 12 years of Catholic schools, in the 60s and 70s.  We had corporal punishment when I went to school.  Playing by the rules at work would be a piece of cake!

So the new company takes over.  We're all now on probation for 6 months.  We are all considered brand new employees.  Those of us left standing on September 4 would get back our seniority (I have 8 years in)  and our vacation pay (I was getting 3 weeks paid vacation).  But we all have to prove ourselves!  OK, I can do that.

All of our perks were gone!  No more extra pay to be shift leader (I am a shift leader a couple of times a week).  No extra pay to train new servers (I was a trainer.  Easy extra bucks each month).  My manager told me what was going on.... no reflection on me, blah, blah, blah.  This is the way the new company runs things for all 25 of their stores, blah,blah, blah.  I told him I wish we were still getting the little perks, but I was happy to have a job.  He seemed relieved.

Then, they put in a new computer system and brought people down from NY to train us on the new system.
I felt like a brand new server, left alone on my first day!  Now?  Easy peasy!!  I zip through ordering!  I still have questions from time to time but I'm getting it.  Some, ok a lot of the employees didn't like one of the trainers, but did like the other one.  The one they didn't like doesn't take shit off anyone.  The other would sneak out to smoke with them.

I hear grumbling from some of the other employees.  Some aren't happy.  They don't like the way things are changing.   I want to tell them to shut up and do their job or leave.  No one is forcing them to stay.

Lots of the rules are changing.  The new company didn't realize how things were before (aka lackadaisical, we could pretty much do whatever we wanted).  Now people are getting written up or sent home for being late.  Business is slow but the new company wants more servers on the floor, so less money for us (for now).  

Now they are putting their foot down regarding smoking and also drinking after work.  Lots of employees will go into the bar and give back half their tips in booze.  Now we are no longer allowed to drink in the bar, period, even if it's our day off.  We can sit in the restaurant part and order alcohol, but not in the bar ever.  This rule is company wide, not just the franchise.  No smoking on the property ever.  In Pennsylvania, there is no smoking inside the restaurant, but employees used to be able to go out back by the dumpsters and smoke (I'm sure you've all seen cooks and servers hanging outside a kitchen door, smoking and chatting.)  I don't smoke, and I don't drink (well, hardly ever), so it's no problem for me.  

Every few days, someone else leaves, usually just walking out, like someone did today.  Buh,bye!!  

What all these people who are bitching and moaning don't realize, and I wish I could be there when they do, is that, if and when they go to another restaurant to work, they are going to find the smaller sections, no drinking in the bar after work, they have to tip out everyone like they do here,   They'll be considered new servers, so they'll get lousy sections, cut early, less shifts.  Management could be super strict.

Everyone was spoiled because the manager we had until last year, when he got caught stealing the deposits.  Our old manager wouldn't fire anyone or reprimand anyone (well, hardly ever) because he didn't want to make any waves!  He was trying to fly under the radar so he wouldn't get caught!  Our owner wasn't much better!  Wouldn't give us money to get things fixed or replaced properly, was late in paying bills so we'd lose internet and other things.  

So now that things are being run the correct way, everyone is bitching!!!  This company has MONEY!!!!!  And they aren't afraid to spend it!  They spent nearly $100,000 on a new computer system.  Every few days, new equipment arrives.  They are willing to put thousands and thousands of dollars into our store to make it a better place to work.  And they are hiring a whole bunch of new people to work here.

And ya know what?  When the smoke clears and all the people I've been working with are gone, because they've either quit or management has had enough of their griping,  I'll still be standing and I'll be on top of the heap!


slommler said...

WTG Joanie!! That is the correct attitude. I give you high fives!!

Garret of Jim and Garret said...

Excellent attitude. Those who are resistant to change won't survive.

Some of us like rules and get pissed when coworkers get away with shit all the time.

I do think that not paying you to do training or shift leader is wrong of them unless that's not uncommon in your biz. You do extra, have more responsibility and should be compensated for it.

Jillsy Girl said...

You go, girl!!! You have the attitude that more people should have! You WILL end up on the top!

linlah said...

Sometimes it really is a good thing to be older and wiser.

Amy said...

Way to go, Joanie! Soon we'll be calling you Manager Joanie.

The Retired One said...

Great attitude Joanie..they are going to love you!!!

doreen said...

Good for you! Aren't these spoiled little whiners just too much? Drives me crazy!
Just thought I would drop in and say hello. I am making the Pa. rounds:)

Anonymous said...

I've learned a lot from you today. It just goes to show you why they were working there. Not the money as much as for the perks. It's never the reality, it's the way we perceive it, and you're doing great.