“You should talk to him.”
“We don’t want to see you leave.”
“You don’t speak up for yourself.”
These were all comments made to me this morning by my partner, a good friend and a co-worker, not necessarily in that order.
Of course they are all right. Since I found out my job was posted in the local newspaper without any explanation to me, I’ve had mixed emotions.
First I was hurt. Sure, I’m a big boy and have been around the block (more than a few times actually) but rejection still hurts.
Secondly, I was angry. I’m the one worker who is always available to fill in on short notice. Even on Thursday, when I got the news that my job was going to be posted in the local newspaper, I was called into work at 12:30 instead of my usual 3 pm. The shift I worked Thursday was 12:30 pm to 11 pm. That is a long day by anyone’s standards.
Conflicting thoughts have been running through my mind since I learned of this disheartening news. Should I quit? Should I swallow my pride and keep going in until they find someone better then they fire me? What to do?
My first impulse was to ignore the news as if nothing happened and continue going into work and doing my best, which is what I always do. I am competent. In fact, I am very good. Not for nothing did I win the Best Guest Service Award (1999) when I worked at the Hampton Inn in Exton, PA. That is a national award that no one at that particular Hampton Inn ever won before or has won since. I am good at what I do. I enjoy meeting hotel guests and providing them with the very best service. Thus, my first impulse was to continue going to work and hoping this uneasiness in my stomach would go away.
But it didn't go away. This morning on the way to our weekly breakfast at Zorba’s in Rehoboth Beach my partner Bill told me “You should call him and find out what is going on. Just ask him. He owes you an explanation.”
My cell phone had a message on it from a good friend. I retrieved the message and in essence what my good friend said was “That’s bullshit. You don't deserve to be treated that way.” And of course he’s right.
I called the hotel and asked to speak to the manager. My co-worker at the front desk answered the phone. She wanted to know why I was asking for the manager. I told her “Because I want to know why my job was posted to the newspaper without anyone talking to me.” She said “You should talk to ___ (the owner’s name.) That’s the only way you’re going to get anywhere. You have to talk to him and tell him how you feel. You don’t stick up for yourself Ron. That’s the problem.” And, of course she’s right too.
Now granted, I may not be the best candidate for the part-time front desk job. Since I only work part-time (used to be two days a week now it’s one day a week), I’m not always up to date on the latest changes. Thus, sometimes I’m unsure of myself when questioned about a new package the hotel is offering. I’m not up to date on the latest rules on how much we can offer in discounts in this down economy with low hotel occupancy rates. Maybe I show this uncertainty when the owner is hovering nearby. In fact, I probably do show that uncertainty. That is the situation that a part-time worker encounters. If I was there every day I would be more up on the current promotions and know how to act with confidence accordingly.
I get home and I have a message from another good friend whose opinion I respect very much. He asked me “I don’t see how you can go into work when someone treats you like that.” And, of course he is also right.
Thus, I made my decision. I called the owner and asked to meet with him today to discuss my job. I want to know why he posted my job without talking to me first. If he is dissatisfied with my performance, then he has every right to replace me. He can fire me. That is his right which I do not contest. However, if there is a misunderstanding, then I want to know what it is. But what he doesn’t have a right to do is humiliate me by posting my job without telling me why. That’s not professional. In fact, it stinks. I deserve some measure of respect.
He said he was busy (Pumpkin Chunkin) this morning and had a memorial service to attend to this afternoon at 1 pm. It is now 1:25 pm. I await his call. I am nervous but I also feel a sense of relief that I am doing something about this uncomfortable situation instead of letting it stew. I'm sticking up for myself.