atomic_fungus (atomic_fungus) wrote,

#4398: In the entire blogroll, nothing.

The same tales of woe and doom, nothing new--and I'm not in the mood to synthesize anything today.

Yesterday I ended up staying at work an extra 58 minutes to cover for a guy who didn't show up. I expect that he called off, but none of the managers said anything about it. I was originally scheduled to leave at 8 PM, but didn't punch out until 8:58 because I had clients to take care of--just two of them, but they were ball-busting issues that required a lot of extra time to handle especially since I was the only agent in the precinct.

It was another case where I worked four hours by myself, with no backup whatsoever. The other two people who'd been scheduled for Saturday left--both of them early, and the last left around 5-ish. And because of the extra hour on the clock, I ended up working nearly eight hours but--of course--didn't get a lunch break because of the ad hoc nature of how it was scheduled. It was nearly continuous work, too, the entire day, so I had to beg clients' indulgence while I ran to the restroom.

...and all I could think about as I punched out at 8:58 and left the store nearly an hour after the scheduled end of my shift was how my immediate supervisor would probably complain that I didn't stay until the store was closed.

Even at Target--where many of the upper managers had severe chronic recto-cranial inversion syndrome--I would be thanked for staying late, especially if I did it on my own initiative to help out with a sticky situation.

So the guy who called off should have been there at 5, but appears to have resumed his habit of showing up half an hour late and not ready to work until he spends another half hour changing his clothes; still, by the time 7:30 rolled around it was pretty obvious that he wasn't coming to work that night. I had resolved to leave at 8 or when I was finished dealing with clients--whichever took longer--and went about my business. I knew I wouldn't be leaving at 8 because my last appointment was scheduled at 8, but it was a PC pickup and shouldn't take very long, and after that I could skate. I decided that I would play it by ear, but with a view towards leaving as soon as was feasible, and if anyone said anything to me about staying I would agree to.

But that last appointment was a royal pain in the ass--she wanted an AARP discount that didn't exist, and insisted on using her PC to examine AARP's entire web site to find it--and this guy brought in his cell phone which had crapped out only three weeks after the purchase date, so I wanted to see if there was anything I could do to help him. After the last clients were gone and I got the shipping dealt with it was 8:51, and I resgined myself to staying until 9. I sat at the PC in the back with my head on my arms for about two or three minutes before I decided Fuck this shit, punched out, and left. I should have just punched out after taking the shipping to Receiving, but--well.

I wouldn't mind it so much if I thought that this would get me brownie points. I don't think it will; and I have a feeling that if I'd been able to leave at 8:00 (and did so) I'd get into trouble for that: "There was no one in the precinct!" I also can't shake the feeling that I'm going to get in trouble for not covering the guy's entire shift.

I certainly do not expect anyone to thank me for it. It'd be nice if I were, but I'd be very surprised if anyone said anything nice to me about it at all. More likely it'll be ignored; but if anyone tries to discipline me for leaving only 58 minutes after my scheduled end of shift--

Well, suffice it to say that the sarcasm I normally hold in check will be loosed: "Hey, you know what? You're welcome. I'm saying that because most supervisors would say, 'Hey, thanks for stepping up the other night when so-and-so called off. I know you could have left at 8, but you stayed, and we appreciate that.' That's what most supervisors would say, and I'm saying 'you're welcome' because I'm going to pretend that's what you said, rather than complaining that I stayed only fifty-eight minutes after the end of my shift."

* * *

As for AARP lady--

She learned that AARP offers a discount coupon for tech support. You get something like $30 off the price of a new GSTS contract if you show your membership card and present the coupon.

Now, this client--she asked me about this when she dropped off her PC, and I told her that the AARP discount only applied to new GSTS contracts. Apparently she didn't remember that, because when I told her there wasn't a discount on renewals she said that she was being "screwed" and asked, "What's the point of me being in AARP?"

What I didn't say:
No one is "screwing" you, lady. Everyone pays $100 to renew their GSTS. You're complaining that you're not getting a special discount, and not getting a special discount does not equal a screw job. Now if we made you to pay an extra $30 for the renewal, based on the fact that you're black and old, that would be "screwing" you, but asking you to pay the regular price for a renewal isn't even remotely "screwing" you.
I merely told her that if there turned out to be a discount I'm not aware of, she could bring the information from AARP (and mentioned that it had to be a hardcopy) and we'd be happy to give her the discount. She wanted me to hook her machine up to the Internet so she could check, so I did that and let her.

What should have been a 15-minute appointment, max, turned into nearly 35 minutes, and she left about 8:33.

Then the guy with the cell phone--like I said, he bought it three weeks ago and the cellular phone part crapped out completely--no signal, not even 1G--and I was trying to see if there was anything I could do for him. I reset the phone, restored the phone, called Sprint and had them walk me through their troubleshooting process--and after all that it was obvious that the damned thing had failed...and worse, the replacements were back-ordered.

I called the manager over, and the manager took care of the guy. I do believe he left happy; but he went back to Mobile at 8:45 PM. *sigh*

* * *

I understand the concept of "unforeseen circumstances" and "needs of the business", really I do...but when I don't feel as if I get any support from management, and seem to be deliberately scheduled so that I don't have any breaks, and work alone most of the time, it wears on me. I get tired of arriving at work, and then the other CA goes to the back and I'm left alone on counter duty while the other CA does anything else--usually involving much cell-phone diddlage--and I have to go back and get people to come out and help when things get busy, and when I do I see people standing in groups and talking, which rather looks more like socializing than doing anything, and I get a definite sense of resentment: Why aren't you handling it?

When I arrive for work, inevitably the first thing I have to do (if I am not immediately serving a client) is clean shit up because the counters are a mess. If I don't do that, the back counter will remain a disaster until I clean it up. Certainly the other CA (who is in back fiddling with her cell phone) won't do it. At most she'll file her paperwork, but leave everything else untouched. (I say "her" advisedly. I am the only male CA in the place. Also, I am the only white agent in the precinct.)

Nonetheless, I soldier on, glad to have a job in the middle of an economic depression. *sigh*

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