That will be the title of my next book.
It will be non-fiction, and subtitled, “Memoirs of a Retired Human Resources Manager.” I’ll have to get on a speakers’ list and start touring various chapters of H.R. Associations so I’ll have a “platform” to convince publishers to print my book. After I retire, of course.
What brought this on, you ask?
Well, the title refers to the “human resources” I try to “manage.” I can’t go into any current situations because some people from the plant read this blog, and I’d be in violation of confidentiality or expectation of privacy issues. But I can give you examples of earlier adventures in the kindergarten I call my workplace.
How about if I start with graffiti? Oh, I don’t mean just the normal stuff like pictures on restroom walls, or “Cowboys Rule,” or “Managers Suck.” I’m talking about ugly stuff about employees. You know, accusations that somebody’s gay or a pervert. Ethnic slurs. Things like “John the Faggot.” Or “Wetback Juan.” The kind of stuff I used to see when I was in what they now call Middle School (Junior High to me). The stuff that today could form the basis for a hostile work environment claim and a lawsuit for harassment.
Then there have been the cliques, and the jealousies they cause.
There’s the juvenile insensitivity to another’s pain manifested in attempts at jokes about things that aren’t funny. Like an employee’s pending divorce that turned ugly. Or an employee’s family member’s problems with alcoholism.
How can people joke about these things in front of the affected person?
Oh yes, the book will have sex. From unfounded accusations of sexual harassment made in a state of jealousy or from a desire for revenge, to actual cases of quid pro quo demands for sexual favors in return for favored treatment.
It’s all there, and I’ve seen most of it. Even though we only have about 100 employees here, and we’re located in rural Texas.
But then, I guess few would buy the book. If you’ve been in the workplace you’ve probably already seen most of these things going on, or at least heard about them before.
It all makes me want to tell some of my human resources, “Children, grow up!”