So this time just about three years ago, Rog was fully installed as the dept mgr – essentially my direct boss at the Hole. I can’t say it started of well and worse still we knew he was coming for a whole month. There was some time for the transition.
From what I’ve observed our acting mgr knew him and I had believed she paved the way for him. Essentially our dept didn’t have a permanent boss since about February when our last full dept mgr had left. So the man who would ultimately become Ruthless Roger on this blog was going to be that guy for the foreseeable future.
There were a few rough spots to see here. Perhaps I was naive, however, for over a month I was helping our team’s buy/receive crew and it was somewhat expected that I would get the role permanently. I had no idea if it would be given to me nor was there any expectation that I would apply once it was available. Alas with my then current dept mgr leaving in the near future that still wasn’t clear.
A couple of colleagues suggested I go to Morley to ask about the position because although the acting mgr would likely make the requisition his hands would be on it. All he could tell me at that point before Roger came around was that we’re going to have a new dept mgr. Evidently he had no answer either.
Basically I was in a weird limbo where I would get shaken out in the future. All it took was to start my tardies, I hadn’t yet crossed that threshold when Rog started and I was dangerously close to it. However, that would be one ball to drop and it did before the end of July ’17. The other which shouldn’t have really surprised me and I’d have to accept if it had is that Roger would’ve wanted to pull me from this anyway. Install his own people as he had during the time yours truly remained at the Hole – i.e. buyers or supervisors.
Either way once our acting dept mgr finally did depart to another state – she remains with the company to this day – there was still some uncertainty with my role. I wasn’t “yet” going to be either an associate buyer or receiver officially. Even another dept mgr gave me some advice on the subject I couldn’t say there was a real agreement though certainly an expectation. As it turned out the agreement or expectation didn’t turn out the way I had hope. And I hope to tell that story in the near future.
As for Rog, well one rough spot I noticed right way and this happened before the transition is that an associate in our dept asked about communication between shifts on her station. She said she tried communicating and tried not communicating – yeah disastrous response I thought at that time – and all he could say is always communicate. Great advice, but I don’t recall him really saying anything in that moment that helped that situation then.
We had one good convo one morning and while I was talking about the position I was about to take on seemingly. We just talked about how in moving up you need to know about numbers and you also have to know how to handle people. Rog would say that he wanted to be a supervisor because he knew and liked dealing with people (using the rule book). However, to handle numbers and people is a delicate balance.
Did the negative side start to come out? I wrote about the one time Rog called out for not being in full uniform one morning he came to work before the store even opened. Remember I get on the train at 4 AM get to work at 5 AM the store opens at 7 AM and usually mgmt for our department don’t report in until about 6 AM. So he found one thing already to pick on, with his infamous words “I’m not trying to pick on you, but you need to be in full uniform. That’s not just from me, that’s from corporate“.
Another time later I was just coming from a 15 minute break one AM and he stopped me as I was going back to the sales floor. He wanted to pull me into the office about keeping the department clean while receiving and take extra care of the boxes so that we can take care of fruit flies. It was a signal in my mind he was looking for things to pick at, he was just getting started finding things to complain about. Also, he had just arrived and I started to get this bizzare vibe from him and it wasn’t good.
I knew what he might have been talking about. While I was trying to receiving and put away items some edibles fell onto the ground and I needed to clean those up and some boxes got left which might have been an issue with him. My mother noted the many times that we talked about this he may just have some OCD issues. Another Rog victim I referred to as Danny just stated for the record that Ruthless was just bossy who wanted everything his way. As he learned as a porter in our department there could be very little room for error with goofball. I also had to learn that with him….
To set up the next post in this continuing series, the tardiness came to a head. After just about two months of working 5 AM to 1 PM doing buy/receiver all the sudden and this didn’t help my efforts to avoid yet another tardy all the sudden I got schedule to do mid-shifts on the sales floor. Yours truly could’ve questioned this with the scheduling manager but I never had. This was a W.T.F.?, all the sudden I got the gears switched on me and no warning which could’ve helped. However, our dept was beginning to have some staffing issues which would start to get worse as that summer went further along.
It wasn’t just yours truly as one should during this period Wil our associate buyer had to do a shift on the floor himself. Unlike me I knew my role on the floor, I’ve known him to do different things other than customer service as I had. It wasn’t a struggle from my eyes, however, it was something different for him I’m sure. When I tried to return to the Hole over two years ago he told me about Rog after he had long departed the scene, “He stepped on a lot of toes trying real hard to be very strict“.