06 November 2007


We have this employee, she is 24 or 25 years old, has three daughters under the age of 10 and is in the process of going through a divorce. She has been with the company from the beginning and is an all around nice person. The only problem is, she is not a very good employee. She is not getting all her work done, she enlists other employees to cover her slack then when we ask her if she can handle her responsibilities she always tells us yes. When we ask her what are the big time-suckers of her day, she says nothing. I don't know what to do with this girl, I really don't. My business partner has known this girl for well over 10 years and she is a good friend of BP's daughter. BP has even made comments to the effect that she will always do for this girl. Me? I have no emotional attachment to her. I really like her, she's a cool person, her girls are awesome and fun and I certainly sympathize with her divorce situation and have gone out of my way to personally help her as I can, but she's hurting the company. She is hurting our ability to grow. She is hurting our other employees ability to make more money because they have to stop what their doing to help her. What bothers me the most is that she is not all that concerned about how she is affecting the company. I think because of the relationship she has with BP, she feels confident that BP will never fire her and will always accommodate her. I have told BP about this and I am hoping that BP's growing frustration with this girl will make her see the writing on the wall.

None of this is easy. I mean I don't want to fire a young woman who is going throught a divorce with 3 young girls, but she isn't trying. I can understand if she was busting her butt, but she isn't even trying. I can forgive a lot, if she was actually putting forth an effort. She doesn't care, y'know, she is making her paycheck, she doesn't have to perform her job fully and she feels comfortable and believes that she can say sorry and all is well. Her ineptitude/apathy is even more evident while BP is overseas on vacation. BP isn't here to enable her and so she's sucking even more and I don't want to be an unsympathetic jerk, but when is enough, enough.

Enabling people is one of the easiest, yet most detrimental things you can do for someone. If we keep enabling this girl, what is she teaching her daughters about responsibility and making tough decisions in life? It's not my responsibility to support her financially. It's not my responsibility to make sure she does right in the world. She has her own life to live, she has to make her own way in the world and that sometimes means doing stuff you don't want to do. I don't get it. BP's daughter is somewhat similar in this regard. The girl hasn't graduated high school and she's 25. I have tried to plant the seed of education in the girl's ear, but she isn't really hearing it. She doesn't like school and doesn't want to go. NEWSFLASH: No one wants to have to go to school! You go because you want better in life, you go because education=opportunity! Am I wrong? Of course there are exceptions, BP is one. She never went to college, but she had something neither of those girls has -- ambition. She really worked her way up and before we started our company, she was an executive employee making a boatload of money, but that success was 25 years in the making. It also begs the question as to why BP didn't stress education to her own children.

Growing up in my family, my parents weren't about to enable us. There would be no staying at home "trying to find myself" crap. Nuh-uh, plus by the time any of us reached 15 or so, we started to make plans to be up and out. I know I did, it was college for me as it was for a couple of my siblings, some joined the military, many just packed up and left town to seek their own way.

I don't know, I guess I am just ranting. I just don't want to have to carry this girl for however long we keep doing this business. She is really going to have to show me something by the end of the year, she really does or it's going to be an easy decision for me and BP is going to have to put her emotions aside and do the right thing for the company and for the rest of the employees.

Good grief. Yeah well, I am going for a walk...burn off some of this frustration.

Labels: ,


Blogger Change for Good said...

I can only imagine how frustrating this situation is for you. I used to teach, so I mainly only worked with kids all day. Now that I work with adults all day, it is so challenging.

I don't have a business background, but the only thing I can think of is to cover your tail. I am a huge on documentation with work. I would officially write her up a few times, etc so that she doesn't come back to cause trouble later on.

November 6, 2007 at 10:26 PM  
Blogger sparkly_jules said...

What she said. Write her up, date, sign, she signs. If you have to do this more than twice, she's gone. The other option is suspension, no pay. I would do that after the first warning and before the second one if there is no improvement, and let her know on the first right-up that suspension w/out pay is a possibility. You also want to do this so you have a record when, and she will, she files for unemployment.

She needs a serious light-bulb moment. I don't care how many kids she has or how bad her life is, that stops at the door and she becomes a professional the minute she starts working. If she can't work just now, she needs to be on a leave of absence.

We all have problems, and she has options. Screwing around is not one of them. Maybe she needs to go "part time" for a while? Or is there another position you can put her in like receptionist or mail room clerk? Just a thought.

That so sucks. Personnel issues are so difficult.

Hang tough.


November 7, 2007 at 1:53 AM  

Post a Comment

Subscribe to Post Comments [Atom]

<< Home