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Boss bashed for telling worker to ignore rule, then got mad for ignoring it

A boss was bashed for telling an employee to disregard a work rule, but then got mad at them for ignoring it.

Published on Reddit‘s r/MaliciousCompliance forum, an employee under the anonymous username u/MrSatterday45 shared their story and received over 11,000 upvotes.

The original poster (OP) began their story by describing what they do for a living.

“I work at a large hub facility of a well known shipping company with the main delivery trucks that deliver packages to homes and smaller businesses,” they said.

The employees use specific scanners to scan the package that helps them place the packages on the right truck so they are delivered to the right place. However, the trucks also have sensors just in case a package is accidentally placed on the wrong truck, the scanner “whines.”

The OP explains the “main antagonist” of the story was his former supervisor “Alen.”

Above, an employee argues with their supervisor. Published to Reddit’s r/MaliciousCompliance, a boss was dragged after telling an employee to disregard a work rule, but then got mad at the worker for ignoring the rule.
fizkes/iStock / Getty Images Plus

“He always walked up and down the trucks to watch us work, watched us from a distance or close by with his arms crossed to get us to work faster, constantly told us to grab all of our packages as they come to us despite the fact they go around on a moving conveyor belt that literally loops them back if we miss them, told us to load up our larger packages as soon as we get them despite the fact it makes it harder to move through the trucks and place other packages on the shelves, and even hopped into some people’s trucks to move packages around the “right” way (his way),” they wrote.

Alen would send messages in a group chat full of employees to share start times for shifts and share the scanning counts of each worker. Alen insists that they should aim for zero misloaded packages.

The conflict arose while the OP was working a usual shift by the conveyor belt. Their scanner messed up, as the devices were sensitive and frequently had issues. They requested that Alen fix it or if he get them a new one. Alen tells them to keep loading the truck without the scanner and to use the labels on the packages, which is not allowed.

The OP decided to stack the packages by the truck so they can scan them when they get a new scanner. When Alen comes to check on the employees, he tells the OP to stop stacking and to just load them onto the truck. The OP was annoyed but did as they were told to avoid conflict.

Later in the shift, Alen sends a group message to the employees with their speed counts and the OP was at the bottom of the list. Alen insisted again that each package must be scanned before putting them in a truck. Alen spoke to the OP in person to discuss his misloads. They were upset, but were still new to the job and didn’t want to argue with their supervisor and takes a mental note to scan each package before loading them.

Months later, the OP announced that Alen was leaving his position and was in the midst of training the person that was replacing him. The OP was thankful that he was leaving as they were tired of his “micromanaging and pestering.” The Redditor explains that his scanner messed up again and has the same conversation with Alen about placing the packages in the truck. The OP decided to stack the packages outside until they receive a working scanner.

The OP wrote, “Alen comes back with the trainee at his side. He asks me what I’m doing and I tell him I am stacking my packages. Once more, he tells me to keep loading my trucks and this time I talk back, telling him I’m not loading them without a scanner. I have to admit, at this time, I was done with Alen and let my anger get the better of me, raising my voice and getting a bit shaky as I have a very hard time dealing with anger, especially after dealing with his s**t for so long.

“The trainee tries to settle the situation and tell me to keep just keep stacking and they’ll get a scanner right away, but is interrupted by Alen telling me once again to load my trucks, this time louder. I flatly respond no, and thus it goes back and forth like this for nearly half a minute before I eventually tell him to get it to me in writing because I’m not getting fired over this. Remember, we are not supposed to load a package without scanning it, and can indeed get in trouble if they can prove we [did] it intentionally,” the Redditor continued.

Alen asked them if he should go get the head supervisor as a tactic to scare the OP. Alen goes to get the higher up but doesn’t return. The trainee returns with a working scanner, apologizes to the OP and tells them to get back to work. The OP said they didn’t see Alen for the rest of his final week.

Newsweek reached out to u/MrSatterday45 for comment.

How to deal with a toxic boss

Are you in a similar situation as the OP? Do you believe that you have a “toxic boss” and don’t know what to do about it? According to clevergirlfinance.com, here are some tips on what to do if you’re having problems with your boss:

  • Make a decision on if you want to stay or quit.
  • Find friends within your workplace as they may notice the same qualities in your boss. However, don’t gossip as it could hurt you in the long run.
  • Remain professional, even when you are frustrated.
  • Find fun hobbies to do outside of work to distract yourself.
  • Vent to a trusted friend, family member or coworker.
  • If you can’t leave the job, try to learn their leadership style.
  • If things don’t change, talk with human resources and keep detailed notes on your boss’s tactics.

Newsweek has published several articles regarding work conflicts including stories about a new mom who was praised for calling her boss’s bluff over their demand she return to the office, a woman who excluded her coworker from sharing a group lunch, and how a worker was applauded for insulting their manager in front of their new boss.

Redditor reactions

“Gotta love a boss who is willing to go to his own boss and report his incompetence. Saves you the unsavory task of jumping over your bosses head. This is the beauty of malicious compliance,” u/sheepdog411 exclaimed.

“Seeing stuff like this happening before, Alen probably went to the head supervisor to try to get the head supervisor on his side, just to be told off for wanting you to go against company policy,” u/VersatileFaerie said.

“Alen sounds like the boss that expects you to do your job his way, but gets mad when it doesn’t happen because he failed to properly train,” u/AngryYank2

U/NerdyCD504 commented, “As someone who might work at the same well known shipping company…f**king good on you. God knows I have had to deal with s****y scanner issues one too many times.”

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