Wednesday, June 30, 2010

A Whine & Cheese Post

It's been a rough week.  All of the area big wigs have been in town.  I've been taking them on tours of my stores sitting through meetings and profit & loss reviews for three days straight.  These aren't bankers hours either.  Start at seven in the morning and end around ten at night.  I'm friggin' tired and feel pretty abused. 

The group of folks that were with me are basically middle aged men who all make around a quarter million a year.  They all have important jobs within my company, but nothing that a someone else from outside of our industry couldn't do better.  Very old school mentality.  My boss was present, but he doesn't actually report to any of them.  There are "dotted lines" every where in this company.  i.e. I manage several different areas of the business that technically shouldn't have anything to do with one another except that my job links them.  The people in charge of the bigger aspects of each of those (ahem, money and assets) are who I had to deal with the distinct pleasure of spending this week with. 

Basically, they have to report directly to the VP of the company so, I'm sure they have a lot of stress and anxiety in their lives.  But instead of being power houses it was more like I was at a Pinochle game with a bunch of catty bitches.  The derogatory way they spoke about my coworkers, my staff and other people in the business was jarring. 

One in particular is my old boss's boss.  He hates (yes it's a strong word, but it is accurate) my partner in crime down here.  She and I cover the same territory but she is sales where I am operations. His beef with her stems from the first encounter the two ever shared about a year ago.  He was stressed out and she in his mind was being a retard so he yelled at her after which she deliberately disobeyed him.  In reality, he was being an ass and what he was demanding was so out of left field it's laughable.  He called her boss and her bosses boss lighting them up.  He loves to tell this story....a lot.  They had a second encounter last week.  She, having an incessant need to make everyone her friend, approaches him.  Presumably pleasant conversation ensued.  However as he tells this part of the story, he (in explicit language) calls her a dumb bitch who again was disobeying him but he'd not call her on it because then he'd just be picking on her.  I was floored, these are people who SHOULD never interact with one another because of job descriptions.  Yet he tells these two tales repeatedly as if it's the biggest battle story ever told. 

I'd like to say to him that Sales and Ops will never get along.  Ops is like a cook in a restaurant and sales is like the waiter.  Both sides need each other and don't appreciate what the other does in any way shape or form.  Cooks/Ops think Waiters/Sales are idiots who don't actually DO anything.  Sales/Waiters think Ops/Cooks only create problems and intentionally screw things up.  I of course would never tell him that because no person who makes a quarter mil wants to be compared to a fry cook. 

Speaking of Fry Cooks, I'm pretty sure they get paid better than me.  But some of my locations don't make much more money than I do (it's sick, I manage people who make A TON more than me).  These catty bitches started mocking one of my stores that is run by a husband wife combo.  They were saying the couple must be in "pharmaceuticals." Because there is no way that normal humans could live on such a small amount of money.  I'm the lowest paid jack ass in the room, so maybe that's why I took it to heart.  Granted my wife does bring in an income that puts us over the couples', but still.  What the hell ivory tower do they live in that they couldn't imagine people surviving on what their employees make?  Sadly, we have other positions in the company that make considerably less.  I'm picturing a cheesy 80's "I want to join the country club but we just don't fit in with all that puffery" moment but can't place the show. 

These and other similar immature tangents were thrown around this week that just really got OLD quickly.  What amazed me was how they kept saying "great review" yet every chance they could they'd backhandedly say that everything that's wrong with my territory is my fault.  I'd explain how decisions our company made sweepingly worked poorly in this area (and noticeably EVERYWHERE ELSE).  To which they'd reply I just didn't put the right people in charge to make it work.  You know, the whole turn shit into gold dilemma most middle managers find themselves in. 

Wow, I did not intend to turn this into a whine and cheese post, but look what just happened.  I think that I'll pull up some of the funny photos of the week to help balance this out.  Look for it later tonight. 

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