A Material Handler at a manufacturing company takes a stand against management’s negligence and gets his revenge in the form of a four-day weekend and a mass exodus of employees.
An Important Role
Over a decade ago, a man worked as a Material Handler at a manufacturing company, where he was responsible for breaking down large batches of materials into smaller manageable quantities for the workers. He had to keep every station supplied, well organized, and order materials to meet future quotas.
He was Following Procedure
One day, he noticed a new lot of parts that were out of spec. They were too small and would damage the final product, causing it to fail testing later. This part came in lots between 5k-30k, depending on what was ordered and passed inspection from the supplier. He put a hold on the lot of 25k, emailed the appropriate people, and followed the procedure.
A Good Employee
Looking through the system, he realized they only had about 1k of the right parts on hand, with one more lot in the warehouse for 7k. This was enough for one week, so he placed another order for 30k (they usually got 25k). It took two weeks to arrive, and another week for cleaning and polishing. He sent off another email informing of the shortage and how it would impact production.
That’s an Order
The only response he got was, “We’ll look into it.” After they ran out of parts, he was ordered to take the out-of-spec parts off hold, but he refused because an engineer hadn’t cleared them. The engineer was on vacation out of town, and the other didn’t know.
A Verbal Warning
A few days later, some random engineer from another department told him they were good, and he was forced to release the lot. He got a verbal warning for insubordination, was relieved of his MH duties, and was put back on production.
Not My Problem!
Two weeks later, all the parts started failing, wasting two weeks’ worth of about 110 people’s labor, machine time, and untold tens, possibly hundreds of thousands of individual parts. Chaos erupted, mandatory OT was set, and he was just smiling. About two months went by, and the 4th of July weekend was coming up, and he had a five-day weekend with PTO.
Employees Dropped Like Flies
Managers tried to cancel, but he already had it approved in January. Almost everyone in the room was going to work the 5th and 6th (Friday and Saturday), and people were quitting left and right, being forced to work 60 hours burned them out.
No One Else Cared
Since they had been working these few special machines so hard on OT, the material was running out that it used to spray on the parts. To replace it, it required a three-day cycle, which usually happened on a Friday-Sunday every couple of months. They were about a week ahead of schedule with the OT, and he knew it, but no one else was paying attention.
Good For Them!
He decided to take a half-day on Tuesday, so he could leave during the Team Leads meeting, which he used to be a part of. On his way out, he mentioned this little problem. A couple of them ran to confirm, he grabbed a soda and left. He got a text from a co-worker that they ran out of material Wednesday morning. Everyone got a four-day weekend like they were supposed to, and ten people, including himself, quit on Monday.
The Internet Responded
This commenter wrote, “It’s amazing when the crash and burn is as spectacular as the Hindenburg disaster. Hope you enjoyed your pop on the way out.”
Another person posted, “Management are so full of themselves. It’s the worker bees that got a handle on everything they can’t see from their towers.”
A Final Comment
This poster said, “I genuinely don’t understand why people hire experts to do a job if they’re just gonna override them anyway. Like, surely I, as an employer, would trust the judgement of someone I’m giving money to in order to do something I’m not able to do myself, or otherwise I wouldn’t need an employee on payroll. Is it an ego thing?”
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Images are for illustrative purposes only