The Dilemma Update

Many of you have read my post The First Dilemm Of The New Year and I thank you for that.  Some have asked for the outcome of what my decision was.  And for that matter, what my decision was.

So to recap briefly:

I saw someone at work steal.  As plain as I can put it.  Then I saw another person become a part of the stealing.

I have a strong ethical background in business and life.  I cannot let something like that go.  I don’t care if it’s my business or someone else’s.  I’m not a goodie two shoes but I was raised with right and wrong.  Stealing = wrong!  It doesn’t matter if it’s 5 cents, a pack of gum, or a car…..taking something that is not your property is not right.

So here I am with all of what I just witnessed weighing on my mind.  I did tell my supervisor the next day I was at work.  She was a bit taken back but not fully surprised that it happened.  Nothing could be done without proof though.  As the days passed I found out that others knew of this person stealing.  It has been going on for years!  No one ever said anything.  This had to stop.  I told the manager of my department what I saw.  I was told to get proof that this was happening.  Lucky for me my intelligent phone has a camera.  So the next few times I saw the items being staged for take-away I took pictures of them.  I even followed the person to see if they paid for them.  Sometimes the answer was no.  And other things were taken during the journey to the break room.

I along with a few other employees presented this information to our manager……..it fell on deaf eyes and blind ears.

I couldn’t believe this and neither could the other employees.  Here we decided to stick up for this manager and he didn’t seem to care.

I still had the right/wrong thing pinging in my head.  So we took this to the Store Director (above the store manager).  If anyone would care, she would…..right?

NOPE!

Mind Blown………Frustration continues.

The End

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The First Dilemma Of The New Year

First of all, Happy New Year to everyone!

The year 2012 ended with me being perplexed.  Every department in the commissary had to do a monthly inventory on top of lowering everyone’s work hours.  In my eyes this led to a major breakdown in function, at least in the produce department.  But that wasn’t the major issue that hit me the last day of 2012.  Without naming names or getting too close to divulging too much information, I will tell you my story.

The work day began approximately 15 minutes to 3PM (I do a lot of free work).  I walked through the produce back door and the boss was ecstatic to see me.  Lets just say I saw the reason and the huge mess in front of me.  The mess was not the perplexing issue nor was the fact that there was only one employee there for the past 2 hours prior to me showing up.

One of the problems walks in 10 minutes late like usual, if not later on other days.  It just so happens it is a love interest of the person that has been the only one in the department most of the day by themself. 

The rest of the crew showed up on time and the boss gave us all our “missions” on the fly.  Needless to say I had the main mission to save his butt.  Our one receiver in the morning rarely does their job to any extent.  And usually leaves the bulk of the work for those of us that come in later in the day.  Fair, unfair, does it really matter?  This person is a well entrenched government employee and it would take an act of God to get rid of him/her.  My mission if I chose to accept it or not was to get things squared a way in our 3 back rooms and ready for the boss’s boss to help with our inventory that night.  This meant; it better look like it has always been well-kept and organized.  If the big boss only knew…..

So on to my real issue……the love birds.

I have found myself tested with ethics and morals in most of my past jobs but this issue seems to be a tough one.  It actually involves two people.  The other past issues only involved one person and it was usually someone I didn’t care what happened to based on the situation I was put into.  This one is a different kind of issue.

The set up…

Our first back room is a “cooler” (kept at a temp range of 45-55 degrees).  This room has a prep table, 3 tub sink, ice machines, scales and at price label maker along with storage area for produce that can be kept safe at these temps.  Our second back room is a refrigerator (a bit more nippy in there than the cooler), about 90% of our stock goes in there and of course that is where I have to do the brunt of my work. 

So by 4PM I pretty much did the work of what 3 other people couldn’t accomplish in their 8 hour shifts.  So I took a short water break in the cooler to drink some water (along with warm up a bit) and overview the mess in that room.  I was behind a pallet of bananas looking at how I was going to shove 40 lbs of crap in a space that will hold 5 on this shelf, then I start hearing someone setting up our price labeler.   Huh, this is odd……we didn’t have anything on our prep table to be marked down.  And no one ever does their own work, they always leave it for someone else to do. 

I peer around the bananas and see one of our own printing a label but nothing around to price, odd…..

Then this person walked into the refrigerator and came out 2 minutes later without the label or anything else, odd….

I thought nothing more of it since I still had some back-breaking lifting to do.  Back to throwing 40 lb boxes of bananas and 50 lb bags of potatoes around.

As other employees come back to refill their carts of goodies to put on the produce line I talk and joke with each person.  Then one comes back out to tell me a secret.  “Mike come here, I want to show you something….”  I was waiting to be hit over the head with some styrofoam once I walked through the door or something but no.  “Mike, look on that shelf.  What do you see?”

There was a ready-made salad (that we sell a ton of) with one of our price labels on it, hmm odd…….

We don’t do that unless we are trying to get rid of it 1 to 2 days prior to expiration date.  I didn’t even have to touch it to know it was nowhere near expiring since we have been keeping inventory down for our up coming count.  That and it would automatically be put on an ice table on the sales floor.

I’m still not thinking clearly like I am now about anything that I just put together.  So don’t yell at me for not doing something just yet.

Yes, you are right…it does add up to bad.  But still no one did anything wrong, yet.  Nothing was stolen, nothing was paid for, etc, etc.  Plus; here’s the kicker, we are not even sure what do about it anyway.

So, long long story short.  I finally took a break after everyone else had theirs, I go to the break room.  I sit down and lay my head down.  In walks the love birds.  WTH!!!!!  They have already had their breaks and over their allotted time might I add.  I know this because a fellow employee likes to keep track of the time people spend on breaks.  This is the same person that noticed the marked down salad.  Which made another appearance in the break room!!!!  In the hands of not the one that marked it down but the love interest, hmmmm interesting.

So here is where I’m at.  I saw something without actually seeing something.  I saw something else but couldn’t prove it was the thing I saw to begin with.  And now because I didn’t say anything then nothing can be done if anything could have ever been done.

I know I can’t go by what someone else says but according to this person that originally tipped me off about this said this happens almost every night.  To give you an idea this salad sells for around $5.  It was marked down to $1.25.

My boss is already in hot water and losing all this extra money to these individuals doing whatever it is they are doing (call it what you will) I want to protect him and the store. 

What do I do? Should I still say something to the boss?  And how do I say it?

Let me add this….I know saying something to these two individuals will do no good.  It just won’t.