Do you ever have a defining moment with someone you don’t normally get along with, where you finally decide, “you’re all right” ? That happened to me yesterday.
I had a manager I didn’t get along with that well. To put it honestly, none of the staff, including the other managers got along with her terribly well. We have been having a problem at the center because two of the managers have been like Dr. Jekyll and Ms. Hyde. One is very friendly and sympathetic (everyone loves her, no surprise ) but she’s a total pushover and kind of gets treated as a doormat by irresponsible employees. This can be kind of aggrivating, since often it comes down to me, a more experienced but lower-ranking employee to correct my coworker’s mistakes. Now sometimes people will listen to me just fine. But many times they only listen to the boss. The other manager is the total opposite. She will point out every little mistake someone makes, never giving a micron of slack. She’s prone to giving someone a task, and when they don’t do it exactly the way she wants after watching them for 5 seconds, just tells them to stop and does it herself.
I was a little aggrivated about this combination. I don’t like the fact that our schedule is screwed up because nobody wants to work with the ‘mean’ manager. Or that we get in trouble when the regional managers shows up on a day the ‘good’ manager was in charge, because everyone is goofing off (thinking they can get away with it).
Fortunately, things have been changing. Both of them have realized their strengths/weaknesses, and have worked together to improve. This makes me very happy. Yesterday, for example, I stopped by to ask someone a quick question. I had stopped there on the way to take my girlfriend birthday shopping. But things were busy and the first thing that came out of Mrs. Hyde’s mouth was, “Can you put on a uniform and help me out here?” At first I was really angry. This was my day off, and my girlfriend was sitting there waiting for me. But it was very busy, and I decided that it would be better if I bit my tongue and helped out for everybody’s sake.
After helping out for about 30 minutes, another employee shows up. Turns out she was 30 minutes late. It was wild coincedence I showed up when the other employee was supposed to be there, but the manager didn’t have time to sort it out and needed an extra body. After she told me I could go, she thanked me profusely, which I appreciated. Apparently she was worried I’d just turn around and leave when she asked me to help! While we were driving to the mall, my girlfriend commented that she chewed out the late girl for her tardiness, and brought up the fact that I had gone out of my way to cover for her without question.
So I feel a lot better about the manager, because even though she can be a total hardass about things, she can also be great about making sure things get done and to establish that tardiness will NOT be tolerated.