Wednesday, October 21, 2009

"Well, What Are We Gonna Do About It?"

I was proud of some of my young coworkers, yesterday. They have issues they are unhappy about regarding their treatment at our store and in some of the policies that have recently been enacted. They've been complaining for a few months, when one of them finally asked the question...

"Well, what are we gonna do about it? We just gonna keep talking?"

And, that's what set it off. They began speaking to a manager who seemed like she would be receptive and she passed the ball to a member of corporate who was coming for a visit.

Yesterday, they sat down for a roundtable discussion with the corporate executive and I was invited to sit in and help them provide examples, etc.

What made me feel good about this was that:

1) They decided to do something about it;

2) They were uncomfortable speaking up alone, so they decided there were strength in numbers and created a small team to represent the larger pool of workers who felt the same way;

3) They were succinct and brought up issues that many people might be afraid to discuss;

4) They offered solutions and disagreed with ideas that they didn't think would adequately address their needs and concerns;

5) They talked about what worked. It wasn't just about complaints.

What was even more impressive was that the employees were 19 years old to 23 years old in age. Only one was a college graduate. For a couple, this was their first job. But, they stood together--in front of a corporate big wig--and spoke clearly about what was making them feel demoralized, disrespected, and unhappy about their work environment.

I thought I'd share that because we all go through things at different jobs and we all end up in groups that complain to each other about what's wrong at the job. But, sometimes, someone needs to simply ask the question...

"Well, what are we gonna do about it?"

Just something to think about it.


Anonymous Anonymous said...

It’s wonderful that the workers banded together to address their grievances. In most workplaces, people backstab each other to advance their career.

3:21 AM  
Blogger S. Mary Wills said...

You are absolutely right. I've been on the side of trying to get a knife or two out of my back from people I expected to turn on me and others that I thought were friends.

8:34 AM  

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