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Lost my job today


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Took a couple years, but the economic downturn has finally affected my employment.

Ok I work for a college mail-room since Spring of 2006. They are forced to staff it with an extra part-timer because due to the full-timers status he can take an infinite amount of sick, vacation and half-days without getting a negative review from his boss, who is my boss largely in part because the boss hates micromanagement of the mail-room.. I may have taken one sick day in my whole 5 years, and perhaps 3 or 4 snow-days. If I take a brief vacation, unlike the full-timer, I take a pay cut, so I rarely go on vacations, I pretty much work year round except for holidays.

Well my boss and I enjoy each others company when Im not working, but higher ups than him decided they wanted $20,000 taken out of the mail-room budget, which is right around my yearly salary. My boss reassured them that if they take that $20k, mail service will be cut down to one pickup/drop off per department per day. Since the full-timer does next to no work, this would drastically impact the services of the mail-room since then there would only be the other part-timer to do the work when the full-timer doesn't show up. SO in all of their logic, of the higher ups, they cut me, the one who does his fair share of work, keep the full-timer who takes full advantage of his full-time status to not show up to work or call in when hes not showing up or taking a half-day and now they are scaling back the mail delivery at the college to one a day. On top of that, Im 25, almost 26 and the full-timer judging by his share of the workload and the amount of time he takes off, should of retired 5 years ago when I started (hes been working the same job for around 30 years).

My Boss said one of his own employees in his office may be retiring soon, so he might be able to shift the other part-timer to that job and me back into the mail-room in a few months, but for some odd reason, wants the full-timer to accept me again for reemployment before he can hire me again in a couple months even though Ive taken next to no time off and get paid less than him, in comparison (He works 8 hours on paper and I put in 6.5 hours)

I don't think the higher ups know exactly how much mail service they slashed across a large campus, but within a few months of me leaving and mail moves around at half the pace it use to plus my entire workload will fall only on the other part-timer since the full-timer doesn't stamp or do a mail route, only sorts. Plus they will only get one mail pickup/drop off a day, instead of the two they've been getting for atleast the past 5 years, there is a chance they will want to fund an extra mailman. The logical choice would be to fire the full-timer or if not that, pay him only for the hours he shows up to work and that would save my job, but my boss and the mail-room has swept the short-comings of that employee under the rug for so long that its finally costing me my job because the higher-ups departments have no idea how useless one of the three employees in the mail-room is, which will become apparent without me covering for his off days.

I am out of work at the end of June/July 1st. I guess my next step will be to go to unemployment since Im getting fired for reasons outside of my own control. I hate to ask for a handout from the government, Im a democrat but do believe that people need to pull themselves up by their own bootstraps at my young age, but this really steams my beans and I think I deserve some paid time off on unemployment considering how much time I've worked without getting a vacation but for holidays.

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You didn't get fired, you were laid off. Also, you paid for unemployment benefits so USE them as you should be needing to. Now the hard part is to find another job....but you live in good 'ole St.Louis so finding something that pays decent isn't too hard. Worst case scenario is a move to KC or an outlying suburb like Manchester, but you can find work at your age, it's just a matter of your dedication. Heck, start out working at FIVE GUYS and you'll promote if you apply yourself.

Or you can always take a drive down to Fort Leonard Wood and I can show you what a career in the military is like:)

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Very sorry to hear of your situation but I can tell you I understand your frustration completely. I work for the largest college in my area and I've met lots of people as the ones you described. Fighting the higher ups is, for the most part, futile as they can get away with pretty much anything and complaints to HR usually go nowhere. Hang in there. Something better may be just around the corner.

Rob

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Aw man, sorry that is going on.

Sounds like there is a whole lot there which no one can alter the inertia of.

But, yeah, like Brian and Rob say, while the university is hobbled by inertia you have initiative.

Now, let's pray your transportation money holds out while you look for another job.

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Sorry to hear of your situation. The downturn recently caught up to me too. I'm a firefighter in Atlanta and we just were told that we will be taking five furlough days between May and September. Luckily for me, my wife is the bread winner of our household and she was just promoted. However alot of the guys I work with are going to be hit hard by this. Alot of them work two or three jobs just to make ends meet. As in your situation the higher-ups made a poor and illogical decision. All they had to do to avoid this was to raise the millage rate, which the citizens were all for. They showed up in droves at the commissioners meeting and made it known that they would rather have a higher millage rate than reduced fire and EMS protection. Who knows how these people think. Anyway, just keep in mind that something else WILL come your way and this will probably turn out to be a good thing in the long run. Life has a way of working out that way.

Aaron

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Sometimes (well.... often) bureaucracy is just a synonym of stupidity...

Got fired 6 months ago... the boss just didn't like my "independence": the fact I needed little input to organize things, give directions to my staff and so on. i.e. I usually had already thought what to do in the next two weeks before he had even had his morning coffe....

Spent 3-4 months gettin' dust... the hit had been heavy... then got involved in a new project (a sister branch of my former company) and things went quite well... "recovered" some of my former staff, grabbed new ones and we started organising conferences, guided tours, made a couple of short docufilms (historical and cultural heritage stuff) and a "2 inches thick" press review. Lots of interested people...

My old boss? Uhm... he lost control of his (my) staff... most of them quit, some others stayed but working more or less like your "full timer" and every day less and less work is done... I know my new job caused him a lot of headache... he's trying to convince others that I'm doing all this work just for revenge... (well, maybe a little :) ) but the real problem is that no one really cares about him anymore as he's doing nothing but hot air... a typical cul de sac...

Don't know if my workload is higher or lower.... it's certainly more enjoyable as I don't have to handle a stupid bureaucrat every day... I'm more free and.... getting also more money!!! So hold on!!!

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Unemployment hurts. I was there for a bit myself.

SO at this stage in your life, look around, decide what you really want to do with yourself,

And make it happen!

I returned to school for my masters degree, and complete it next May (72 credits total).

Try to look at this as a chance to pursue what you really want in life.

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Don't think of it as a handout. Think of it as support for your job search efforts. I would begin the search as soon as possible but take the time to do any applications/resumes/cover letters properly. I was out of work for a few months a couple years ago. Recently we looked to fill in a new position. You could easily tell the people who just 'threw' an application at a job vs the ones who took the time to do it right.

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Its not a handout, its an insurance policy which you paid for during you're working years. Kinda like having car insurance and having an accident and not wanting to file a claim because you don't want to bother the insurance company. Unemployment insurance won't sustain you, but it helps keep food on the table. Hopefully you don't have any CC debt load, they'll eat you alive. Since you know about your upcoming termination, go hunting for a new job NOW. Its always easier to find a job when you have one.

I only have used my UA benefits twice...right after I got out of the USAF and a few years back when my position was eliminated by the firm I worked for. The first time was just a few weeks, the second I used it all while I looked for work. Since I couldn't find work, I created my own and became self employed which turned out to be the best thing to have happened.

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One suggestion.....if you want to get back on with them......keep in regular contact.....in person with your former boss. That does wonders for motivating him to get you back on staff.

If he doesn't hear from you.....he will assume you've moved on and found a new job.

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Full timer didnt show up again today, and the other part-timer slept in. I was a little late because I wanted to get a cup of coffee from the gas station across the street, but mail deliverys would of been a solid 30 minutes behind schedule if it wasnt for me getting to work, since the other part-timer didn't make it on time.

Sometimes I come by his house to pick him up for carpool and hes asleep, now if the part-timer is sleeping in and the full-timer has taken the day off as he assuredly does every Friday, that leaves only me to pick up the peices in the mailroom and pick up the morning mail and start campus deliveries.

Anyways, if the up-tops had any brains they would cut the employee who takes the most money out of the budget but does the least work, that being the full-timer and leave us two part-timers in place.

On days like today, the campus deliverys would be almost an hour behind schedule, and then there are those days where none of them are here and Im the only one to man the mailroom and delivery. This campus is going to be completely f'd for mail since they made the illogical decision of keeping the lazy full-timer and dropping me.

My parents think I should "swallow my pride" and try to negotiate with my boss an oppurtunity to sub for the lazy full-timer and take a drastic paycut, but I want to see the campus suffer from having next to no "workers" in the mailroom. There will be days where there is no mail delivery for the entire 35,000 student campus without me working.

Edited by Superjew
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You're thinking all kind of wrong. The mail will continue to flow and nothing will suffer too much as other people's jobs would be on the line. Sure, there may be a lull, but it'll be back to business as usual with or without you. You're almost 26 and sorting mail for $25K a year? Fudge that. Get out there and put some hard work into an area where you can move up. Life's to short to be stuck like Chuck in a dead-end job....unless it's your dream job. At your age, I say throw on the uniform of this nation. People mention how neat it is to see A-10's and V-22's......helluva alot better seeing them drop some US made hardware on a target you called in fire support for or getting a lift somewhere by means of a V-22. Sure, there is suck inlvolved, but some days I can't believe what I get paid to do.

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I don't like getting ordered around which is what they do a lot of in the military, I also tend to have a problem with authority figures which there seems to be a lot of in the military, one of the reasons Ive always had a low-opinion of police officers, also because Ive seen firsthand that cops write tickets based on the type of car you drive, rather than how you drive, and I have a taste in "unique" automobiles that get picked on for the pettiest of offenses. Im not getting another japanese import with rims and exhaust until I have my badge. Im the same driver, but I havent gotten a single ticket since I switched over from a modified MR2 Turbo to a stock '95 miata. Couple DWI checkpoints but I always felt those were entirely unconstitutional since they essentially accuse you of a crime and force you to be investigated with no probable cause, even if I passed DWI checkpoints them with flying colors.

I hate being micromanaged and my boss didn't like micromanagement either so it was a dream job for me, but the other employee took full advantage of the lack of micromanagement so there was only me and the other part-timer doing 95% of the work around there. The full-timer took literally, at least 2 1/2 days off out of a 5 day work week just this week alone. It could of been more, probably was but I lost count.

That campus is gonna be ***** for mail delivery/pickup and maybe even stamping to some extent because they essentially cut their workforce from 2 to 1, and if the other part-timer guy takes off the same day as the full-timer, there is NO mail pick up or delivery for the entire campus without me as the last backup the campus had to go to.

I reckon a job in the criminal justice field is more up my alley, I like having freedom to make the decisions I need to make on the job without a supervisor breathing down my neck. Reminds me of the time I was working as a busboy at a restaurant and this c-word manager would not let me do ANYTHING without telling me exactly how to do it, and I finally dropped an entire tray of glasses whilst she barked orders at the new busboy (me) and that got her to STFU in the short term since it was obvious she wasn't helping me do my job better but making it worse.

Edited by Superjew
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Well... don't know if I can give good suggestions...

Personally I won't swallow my pride... I always prefer to fight for what I think is right and as I said it's more or less what I did in the last months, but I can't say if it will really pay or not... (as I said I'm happy with the results, by now... after all... today is a good day to die, but the day is not yet over :) )

You must consider that it would be a victory... a moral victory at least, if everything folds up without you... but... it could also not happen... just don't count too much on that... (ok, but then if it happens...).

My only suggestion is... do what you feel is right... after all you're still young enough to make mistakes!

:)

Edited by Yuri
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I don't mean to be unsympathetic, but this is probably the best thing that ever happened to you. Let's see, you're 26 years old and have been working PART-TIME since 2006. Is that right? Do you have another job to supplement this? Going to school? If not, then you really need to get off your butt and get on with figuring out what you want to be when you grow up, and then GO DO IT!

You say you have problems with authority and have low opinions of law enforcement, but then you say you think that a career in criminal justice would be right for you. You think cops don't have supervisors? They not only have supervisors, but they also have to deal with being under the microscope of the public, news media, politicians, etc. I agree with the advice that fulcrum1 has given you. Join the military. The experience will help you to mature and provide you with training and skills that you can take advantage of the rest of your life.

Edited by Cary Walker
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I don't mean to be unsympathetic, but this is probably the best thing that ever happened to you. Let's see, you're 26 years old and have been working PART-TIME since 2006. Is that right? Do you have another job to supplement this? Going to school? If not, then you really need to get off your butt and get on with figuring out what you want to be when you grow up, and then GO DO IT!

You say you have problems with authority and have low opinions of law enforcement, but then you say you think that a career in criminal justice would be right for you. You think cops don't have supervisors? They not only have supervisors, but they also have to deal with being under the microscope of the public, news media, politicians, etc. I agree with the advice that fulcrum1 has given you. Join the military. The experience will help you to mature and provide you with training and skills that you can take advantage of the rest of your life.

I couldn't have said it better, Cary!

Super, just remember that not every battle is worth fighting (with regards to your problems with authority)! Just because you disagree with a supervisor's take on something does no mean you know more than they do. Yes, some times you may be right but they hold the keys to the kingdom and if you want to survive in a environment (any business environment) you have to pick which fights you should take on. Having pride in your work (as you obviously do) is great, but pride alone isn't going to get you far in some places. As mentioned, having worked in a university environment and having been promoted at least 7 times in 15 years there is something to say about being diplomatic when you must. Although I agree that there are those who simply take advantage of the system there are also those who do take notice of such behavior and, although they may not be able to do anything because that employee might be in a union or may be hard to get rid of, I can almost guarantee you that no one will ever hire him/her if this individual was looking for a promotion within the organization. Not like being ordered around is not, in my humble opinion, an attitude you should have. Everywhere you go you will inevitably have someone telling or directing you when necessary (some managers are worse than others about this). At 26, I personally think it's time to re-evaluate where you want to go in your professional life. You're still young but you are now closer to 30 than to 20 so time is ticking. If you're not going to school at the moment, I would take your parent's advise and negotiate with your supervisor for a sub position and, at the same time, go and take some courses. It's going to be hard (I worked full time and went to school 'almost' full time for both my undergraduate and graduate degrees) but, at the end of the road, I guarantee you will be better for it.

Again, good luck!

Rob

Edited by TOPGUN
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