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...and Then The Work Project Became A Snake Pit Out Of Nowhere


Thurisaz
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So, alright. I work (for another few weeks if all turns out like it was told to me) in a 24/7 factory IT support project. 12 people doing the shift duty, some 5 others with normal daytime jobs doing support and paperwork stuff.

 

Recently, one of the departments we provide services for has decided to fire us, for reasons that seem to change by the hour. Sometimes we (the common servicemen) did crappy work, sometimes it's our bosses who suck, sometimes it's just because they need to cut spending on external services (wait a moment, isn't cost effectiveness usually the reason they claim when they fire their own employees to outsource the tasks to some sweatshop?). Obviously, this is not a thing our CEOs like so I guess there's some increased pressure on our superiors at work. I can totally dig that.

 

But:

 

There have been talks between our superiors (project head and his own superior) and quite a few of us standard supporters. As far as we know (not everyone had The Talk yet), everyone got kicked in the face (and balls for good measure). And I'm not talking about things that make sense, like getting told "your performance sucked lately" when indeed you didn't perform as well as you did before. No, they threw all bad things that were said about anyone who ever worked in this project in the last few years into one huge pot, made a stew from it and now they force-feed the entire crap to every single one of us. I don't mind a beating for things I really fucked up but this is insane.

 

They don't even have the balls to tell everyone personally that they think bad of him. One of our folks got tasked by our bosses to "go and tell your colleague XY that, for his talk with us tomorrow, he should have a damn good reason ready why we should keep him". Did I mention that this targeted colleague is in deep shit (can hardly pay his bills even with the fat bonuses that come from working shifts and such, some 500 € a month in total, because the bitch he was living with turned batshit crazy after the splitup and tries to bury him under lawsuits, denying him the judge-approved right to see his kid every now and then, et cetera, ad nauseam), the bosses know it, and the bosses told him repeatedly "your problem. Now toil for us"?

 

Okay I realize that many of you are US folks and things are rather rough "over there" every day compared with us wimpy Germans. However, our company did pride itself (and it still does) about caring for everyone, and for quite some time that claim was true. Now suddenly it seems that our entire management is secretly participating in an internal "asshole boss of the month" contest.

 

And it continues right into suicidal areas. You see, each of our three shift-working teams does its stuff in close cooperation with an employee of the customer who hired us. Lately, all kinds of complaints have surfaced (or so our bosses keep telling us). One day, pretty much everyone of "us" has bitched about "them" for... well, I can't remember the reason why we did it. Which is kind of weird, shouldn't we know what it is that makes us unhappy?

 

Another day, "they" complain about us for being lazy bastards.

 

Now, just a few days ago, "they" (yes, all three of them) bitched because one of our folks supposedly... *drumroll*... dresses too colorful at work. Now I would have understood if they'd said "man this is a fucking factory, there's some security standards about working clothes, and he's not complying to that!", but it was specifically just about the color of his shirts.

 

If you wonder why such insane complaints are being made, the reason is that they aren't. Whenever we went to check out for ourselves, the entire thing turned out to be pure bullcrap made up by... well probably by our bosses. We don't know who else could have done it.

 

Now consider. We're service providers. We get hired by the customer and, technically, that means that every employer of the customer is either our superior automatically or can just notify his own superior if we do something wrong and we'll get dragged behind the tool shed for a whipping.

 

Now our own bosses are (seemingly) trying to raise niflhel, get everyone pissed off by everyone else, including these three employees of our customer. Guess what they'll do once they find out our bosses are spreading such bullshit? Guess what they already did? Guess what their bosses (the ones who hired us) think about it?

 

Yup.

 

Well I've been told officially (via emails on both the customer's and our own system, and via direct phonecall) that after the Summer break in the factory I'll be "borrowed" out to another project for two weeks, and if things go well, I'll stay there. Which is fine with me because in all likelihood I'll do a normal daytime job there. And just one day later, at the weekly team meeting (which I couldn't attend because it's in the afternoon and I was doing night shift) everyone gets told that I "will leave the project after August". I could get mad about this bullshit but at least in this case it's a good thing for me personally.

 

However, I wonder just how long this project (and therefore the jobs of everyone in it) will exist if this shit continues.

 

Amazing how a more or less cool project turns into a snake pit that fast.

 

*off soapbox*

 

Thanks for your attention. I guess I feel better now. silverpenny013Hmmm.gif

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Yeah, been there. There was a lot of pent up stuff, finished off with "we can't pay you." Followed up with a very polite asking not to spread that last bit around. That group was helpful with me finding a job and advancing my career. Sounds like your guys aren't that decent. I'd thought for a minute I'd stumbled onto thedailywtf.

 

My sympathies, and not sure how it is culturally in Germany, but that would sound like red lights, klaxons, and like an invitation to start finding a new employer, whether or not they want to keep you.

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Sounds to me like the project went really wrong somewhere, and now the shit is coming from the top down. As it does so, every person who gets dumped on then takes it out on someone lower, making up stuff if they can't find a real reason.

 

This is unfortunately how a lot of companies are managed. Doesn't matter what country one is in.

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Realistically, I'm too old to have any decent hope for finding a job with a new employer. But yeah, it would be the best option. The entire thing begs to get the workers' council involved to kick some administrative arse. Only that we don't have one. Yet. With every passing year the bosses have a harder time keeping the employees from demanding their right to form one or else. :fdevil:

 

As that's not an option, I'm working toward the next best - that other project I mentioned. I'll drop in there on Aug 8th and take a peek. Can't be much worse than the one I'm still in. :shrug:

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