This Manager Had One Creative Way Of Eliminating Cost
“I used to work at Arby’s. The general manager there had an unwritten policy: every fourth or fifth order that went out the drive-thru must have a ‘forgotten’ item, and no receipts were to be put in those bags. That way people couldn’t prove something they ordered was missing.
His reason behind this was that it saved a few hundred dollars a month in food costs, and that money went straight into his pockets.
To fight this, I randomly added free items to orders to balance it out. Forget that guy and his food costs.”
He Thought He “Outsmarted The System”
“I found out that my boss was having hourly employees clock out after 40 hours, then clock back in under a different LLC that was a ‘staffing agency’ so that it was technically two different jobs and he didn’t have to pay extra for overtime.
He believed he was the smartest man on the planet and thought he’d outsmarted the system, but he was far from the first person to think of this. Also, it’s super illegal.
I told one of the hourly guys this when he was talking to me about his money problems. I got fired, but apparently, all the hourly guys were given a check for their unpaid overtime and had to go to a law office to sign an affidavit that they’d been paid properly.”
It Looked Bad If “Certain People” Didn’t Pass
“I was a grad student TA in engineering and was helping the professor go over the final marks after the exam. We were going through the grades to make sure things were graded consistently and with a reasonable bell curve. If we found a student who failed with about 49% or 48%, we would go through the exam/mid-term/labs to see if we couldn’t be generous and give them that one extra mark here or there to let them pass.
That was the practice until we got to two girls in the class who were at 40% and 38% respectively and the professor bumped them up to a pass. I looked at him and said, ‘Really?’ He was this old gruff tenured professor who usually had no time for nonsense, so I was a bit taken aback. He leaned back in his chair said, and I’m going to quote because I won’t ever forget it:
‘Let me just say this. There are certain people who if you fail them, the administration will make trouble for you.’
And then he gave me the ‘do you understand what I’m trying to tell you?’ look.
That’s how I found out about the engineering department’s unofficial affirmative action policy. I would later learn that there were lots of other tricks like this to help certain people, but that first time you see it in action is a real shocker. The sad part is these students didn’t ask for a grade bump, they didn’t ask for special treatment, and to this day most probably have no idea this was happening.”
They Weren’t TECHNICALLY Breaking The Law
“Many years ago, I used to work for a company, which did business with the German government. The company was based in Germany, but it outsourced the work to my country. However, due to the nature of the business, we handled ‘sensitive data,’ and the company didn’t want the client to know that they’d basically handed it out to a bunch of foreigners, who may as well be spies for all they know. So they tried very hard to make it appear as though we’re all living and working in Germany.
Our email signatures had the name of the German branch of the company rather than the one in our country.
Our phone number was actually the number to the German office, re-routed to the one in our country. If anyone called us, they’d have an impression that they’re calling the office in Germany.
Our printers were mapped to the ones in the office in Germany. Which means that all of the traditional mail correspondence (of which there was a lot) was printed out in Germany and sent to the client from there.
Although my direct manager was in my country, I was instructed to direct my clients to the managers in Germany.
All of the training, photo shoots, and especially the meetings with clients, were held in the office in Germany, together with the German staff, giving the impression that this was our workplace.
As for what did I do about it… nothing, actually. I found it all quite funny. They weren’t technically breaking the law.”
“I Am Still Trapped In The Middle East Thanks To This Guy”
“I had a former employer in the Middle East who hired foreigners and made lots of big promises.
The only thing was, he didn’t submit the paperwork for their work visas. Then once their initial travel visas expired (two weeks to one month), he refused to pay salaries.
When confronted, his answer was simply: ‘What are you going to do about it?’
I am still trapped in the Middle East, thanks to this guy.”
He Made Sure To Skim A Little Off The Top For Himself
“The owner at my current job does these things we just call ‘training orders.’ Basically, it was designed to do just that; train new employees on how to use the register systems. The catch is that these don’t get recorded to the franchise, therefore no franchise fee to be billed.
He uses his own independent card reader to record payment on these orders and keeps the money from it all in a giant safe. I did the math and at the $500 minimum per day, he collects almost $200,000 a year of what I’m certain is untaxed.
Unfortunately, I don’t know how to prove any of this on record or I’d have reported it a long time ago.”
They Wish They Had Listened To Their Gut
“At a former job, a coworker who was about to finish her probationary period with a glowing review from her manager got fired because the manager’s supervisor and his boss somehow discovered my coworker was pregnant. They instructed the manager to not let her pass probation and when she protested by filing the paperwork anyway, they literally pulled the sheet from the file and threw it in the trash, and rewrote the whole thing.
I was already in poor standing with the entire administration because they wanted to fire me for an accident they’d caused but were prevented from doing so by Workers Compensation. Because of this, I was basically bulletproof, so I offered to report what was an extremely illegal act, but both my coworker and her manager stopped me because they were going to quit anyway.
I wish I’d gone ahead and done it in spite of their objections, especially in light of what went on in that place over the next few years.”
“As Soon As OSHA Left, We Disconnected It Again”
“I worked in a machine shop in high school. The CNC machines had these pressure pads that had to be stood on to make the machine work.
The name escapes me now, but it was a machine we used to bend brake lines. The pads in front of the machines were there to insure you weren’t standing in the crush zone when the hydraulic chuck bent the lines because you had to hold the lines as the chin spun and bent them into shape. I heard stories of people being hit in the face and losing teeth, hands crushed, that sort of thing.
We had the manager come out and tell us OSHA was coming in for an inspection due to an anonymous call. We spent the next two or three days fixing all the messed up stuff so the company wouldn’t get fined.
This included hooking up the pressure pads and discarding the bypass the programmer fashioned.
As soon as OSHA left, we disconnected it again.”
That’s A Great Way Of Handling Waste
“I was asked to ignore 15 open 50-gallon drums that were filled with used phosphoric acid sitting out back of a workshop next to a stream. In the middle of a city. Heavy rains and hurricane winds tipped a few over one night, and my boss dumped one out on the ground because he needed the drum. When I quit, I called the city on them.
They were mostly filled with large patina tanks which ranged from 70 to 200 gallons. A typical ratio was one (acid) to three (water) or one to one. Phosphoric acid was the main ingredient but there was definitely ammonium chloride and ferric chloride mixed in as well.
Not sure what was done with the brightener acids used for the nickel plating baths; guess they were in there as well.”
What’s More Important – The Truth Or Your Ego?
“I work in documentary production and part of my job is to do annotated scripts for big international networks. This is where you’ll have to give references for every single line in your script, to prove to the network what you’ve written is 100% factual.
There was a line written by the scriptwriter/director that was not quite factual due to the way it was worded. I suggested the line be reworded but he was adamant to have it that way, so of course, the network came back to us and said either change the line or find a more concrete source. I searched and searched and couldn’t find a source backing it up because of course, the line was not factual!
The director asked me to make nice with one of the experts on the topic and have him sign off on the line as a fact. I refused to do it, but the director went ahead and did it himself, and the line made it into the final film. I get frustrated every time I see the film on TV and hear the line.”
They Knew What Was Happening, But They Couldn’t Prove It
“There’s a Verizon retailer that’s gaining traction called GoWireless. The district manager of Southern California resells the demo devices that have been charging for six months to a year, at full price. He hides the fact that it was a demo and genuinely tries to sell it as if it were new.
I know this because I worked there for seven weeks and ended up selling a device only to open it up and find the SIM card taped to the LCD because he couldn’t figure out how to get it into the phone. The store email was still logged in, the charger wasn’t in the box, all that good stuff right in front of the customer, who knew what was happening, but was too polite to say anything.
The next day, I pretended to be sick, then I had my day off, then I came in to drop off my stuff and took pictures of my commission total for evidence. I had a feeling they were the type of company that would pretend like I didn’t qualify to collect it. I was right, they are being sued right now by a former employee for all kinds of abuse that included commission fraud, and they tried to pay me $315 to never talk about my experience at GoWireless.
I didn’t take it.”
Life In The Rental Car Business Is As Immoral As It Can Get
“I work for a rental car company. When we get low on vehicles, sometimes we end up giving free upgrades to fill the reservation. But our managers still want us to ‘sell’ upgrades. So during those times, we’ll offer a vehicle you’ll already get upgraded to for free at a price we basically make up based on how likely you are to say yes. That’s right, I tell you it’s $10 more per day, and if you say no, you still get it for free.
The company likes money, so they intentionally allow too many reservations to come through. Sometimes, everybody shows up. So if you’re on the last flight, your two months in advance reservation might not mean anything. That’s when I’m asked to change the definition of reservation.
Walking up without a reservation, I make the price based on what I believe current supply and demand to be. Ask for a specific car that I happen to have? That’ll cost more.
I feel like a terrible person every day, but it is one of the best paying jobs in my area for those without a degree. I already have a second job I work on the weekends, so every day is me trying not to scream back at customers that this is not who I want to be.
I drink and smoke more and more every day, which doesn’t help the finances either. But it’s the only way I can cope with who I am during the day. I just get a lot of flak when people find out what I do for a living so I feel the need to tell people how I hate being a rental agent more than anybody in the world hates rental agents.
You already knew the industry is messed up. This is just the tip of the iceberg.”
“My Faith In Humanity Was Lost That Day”
“This actually happened just a few weeks ago and helped me lose faith in humanity to boot.
I work as a stock clerk at a family owned grocery store. Part of my job is putting the ingredients the bakery department receives away in the freezer until they come and use it. Someone in shipping stacked the order poorly and a case of frozen donuts was buried on the bottom of a few hundred pounds of boxes. One might expect that a crushed cardboard box stored at 0 degrees Fahrenheit might not survive, especially when it’s marked ‘Do not crush,’ but that’s beside the point.
After a good eight hours in the freezers of working stock to the shelves and putting other departments’ stock away, I came upon this box. I figured that if I was careful enough and picked it up from the bottom, it would be fine, right? All of the donuts were in a plastic bag inside of the box anyway. No such luck. As soon as I picked it up, the box fell to pieces, and the bag inside had been torn at some point so a good hundred donuts fell onto the freezer floor (something which has never been cleaned in all of the 20+ years the store has been open).
Now, I’d been working there for three years, I know that a manager has to take inventory of the lost product and in the case of a packaging error, get a refund from the supplier, no loss to the store. My shift was now over, so I went to tell my manager what happened before I left. I got the reply, ‘Before you clock out, just go pick them (the donuts) up, brush them off, and send them to the bakery anyway.’
Keep in mind that there was now dirt and who knows what else frozen onto them. Thankfully, the other manager was around for me to get a second opinion from and the donuts were tossed and I got to keep my job, but I can’t ever get a donut from there again.”
Where Was The Money Going?
“I work in nonprofits. I once had a boss who blatantly lied to a donor about where their money (a large amount of money, in the tens of thousands) would go. She justified it, like everyone in nonprofits, by saying it was going to do good, which was kind of true. But that doesn’t justify fraud.
I had witnessed her do similar things before. I anonymously sent an email to a board member I trusted to give more oversight over our fundraising, but nothing really changed. My boss was good at sweet talking and gave a good impression, but did lots of unethical stuff with fundraising, stuff that would have made my professors in school cry. I quit a few months later.
Right after college, I was a paramedic, and I saw a TON of unethical stuff, especially in privatized nursing homes. Nurses/aides refusing pain medications to keep residents behaving the way they want, locking residents in their room when they became annoying, and several times, severe cases of medical neglect because the patient was ‘gross.’
My partner and I called adult protective services several times, which slightly ticked my bosses off because they wanted to keep contracts, but they couldn’t do anything about it since I was a mandated abuse reporter and it would be illegal for me not to call.”
They Should Have Left It To The Experts
“I work in London, so we have a pretty bad rodent problem in the area. One day, a rat ran into our store and hid underneath the sweet aisle. We tried looking for it, but Mr. Rat was nowhere to be found. An exterminator was called out and humane traps were put down. However, for a good fortnight, we kept finding chewed up chocolate bars, holes in bread and biscuit packs, and poop everywhere, so again we called pest control, who escalated it up to sticky traps.
A customer with clearly nothing better to do with their time noticed pest control in our store and they decided to complain to the Environmental Health Organisation with a very fabricated story of how we have rats (plural, even though pest control confirmed it was only one from the evidence they found) and that it was disgusting that we were not doing anything about it. EHO came into our store unannounced one day to take a look. We were basically told that we need to get rid of the rat or we’d fail our check. So out came the exterminator again, and we told them that they needed to clear the rat out by any means possible.
My manager called me over and asked if I was ok with rats. I said yes, so he replied with, ‘Right, I want you to stand here and if any rat runs at you, I want you to cave its skull in.’
I was absolutely horrified by this, so I refused and walked away to the other side of the store where the tills were. I knew what was going to happen and to this day I can still hear the squeals from that animal as its skull was caved in by someone else. Yes, we were still open and serving customers as this was happening, because my manager still wanted his money.
There was also the time when a different manager (but the same company) told me to put undercooked food in the hot food counter because it was taking too long to cook in his opinion. Again, I refused.”