Thursday, August 07, 2008

Life Here In MI

I guess I have been putting some "fluffy" posts up lately because I really don't feel like going over what has been happening in my world.

The whole thing with Starbucks closing is getting me totally frustrated.

Some things to remember:
  • Starbucks is not closing us down, Meijer (pronounced "Meyer") is closing us down.
  • Our store is remodeling and in the process of the remodel, the Starbucks is going to be taken away and a "new" coffee shop is going to be put into place. (I use the quotes around new because Meijer has tried this before and it tanked.)
  • This "new" place will be opening in late October.
  • Our Starbucks will be closing on Aug. 19.
  • Others in the store will keep their job titles and just move into there new areas when the departments are completed.
  • The five of us that work in Starbucks will lose our job title and be moved to a different job.
  • Meijer and the union do not consider this losing our job.
  • I, and the people I work with, consider this losing our jobs.
  • NO ONE had given us a straight answer.
On Tuesday, we had our District Rep from Starbucks show up with a bunch of other Starbucks/Meijer folks. They were roaming around taking down serial numbers and taking pictures. One person was along and I feel her whole job was just to schooze us workers.

This woman came up to me and introduced herself. She asked me how I was doing. I said, "Wonderful, I am losing my job. How 'bout you?" She asked me a question or two and then walked away before I could answer. If you are going to ask a question, at least pretend to be interested in the answer.

Speaking of pretending to be interested; our manager gave us all availability forms to fill out so we can be placed in a new position. (Yes, we are getting new jobs, No, we are not losing our job. Q: If you get a new job aren't you by definition losing a job?) After these forms were filled out, they sat in our area for over a week, waiting for our manager to take them and see where we might be able to move. They finally were taken by another manager and placed in our manager's mail box. Yes, what happens to us is so VERY important to our manager.

It may seem like I am beating a dead horse here, but out of the hundreds of employees at this store, we five are the only ones that will have a our jobs disappear. I don't think it is too much to ask for a little consideration in keeping us informed. Our Starbucks is going to close in less than two weeks and I still have no idea where I will be working or what my hours will be. And our manager has been avoiding us so we can not even ask him anything. Needless to say, the tension around the "box" has continued to grow. And since we have time to stand around and talk, the less we know, the more we get pissed.

I should have known that this was going to be a fiasco in the way it was announced. We knew there was going to be a remodel, and we were told that Starbucks was going to move to a different part of the store. Then, at a meeting of the store, we were told that Starbucks was going to close. So instead of letting us five know that we were going to be moved, we were told in front of the whole store. Kind of reminds me of the scene from The Meaning of Life where the Head Master is announcing things to the student body and ends with something to the effect of, "Oh, and Johnson, your father died."

Starbucks' hands are not totally clean on this either. Before the Starbucks/Meijer folks showed up, we recieved an e-mail from our District Rep telling us to be "Grand Opening Ready" and be ready to answer quetions about the new "Vivano Nutritional Blend." And that the Starbucks/Meijer folks were coming becuase we were an exemplary store.

The lead barista wrote back asking Andrea (said in the best Valley Girl accent) if she knew we were closing in two weeks. She responed, "Oh, I didn't think you knew."


So, let's just lie to the workers. What were we supposed to think when all of these people descended upon us and started to copy serial number? Where they going to do all that and then walk away and say, "Oh, and Johnson, your father died"?

Andrea said, "Of course not, if you did not know, we would have come up with something to make our actions seem plausable." (A more succinct answer would have been "We would have LIED"!)

So, in just over a week, my job will end. I have no idea what I will be doing. My management is telling us nothing. The Union has been useless, telling us that there is nothing they can do. And it feels like no one cares.

"Oh, and Johnson, your father died."


Lemuel said...

My thoughts go with you and I will hold the hope that the companies will do right by you.

I am amazed at how dumb managers think employees are - as if we cannot figure out what they are doing.

Vic Mansfield said...

Oft times, some of the employees are smarter than the managers.

Sad things are getting so f'd up for you! And not in a good way.