Lessons from an ungrateful worker
When Janet walked into my restaurant to look for a job, she was truly desperate.
Her feet were dusty, signs that she had walked on a dusty road for long hours. Her hair was unkempt and she looked tired and hungry.
“We don’t have a vacancy at the moment,” I told her. “But you can leave your application letter and curriculum vitae. If anything comes up, I will let you know.”
“Please, please Madam. I am desperate to a point of no return. Please give me any job…anything!” She pleaded. ” I have a three-year-old son and I need to feed him. My brother has asked me to look for my own house and I have no way of raising rent.” Janet begged, now kneeling down.
I looked at her and the goddess of Mercy struck at my heart. I gave Janet a job as a waiter with a salary of Sh6000/= a month. I gave her an advance payment of Ksh3000 to cater for her needs as she settled down, both at work and at home.
But hardly a week later, Janet started protesting that as someone working in the Hotel Industry, she must have four meals a day – Breakfast, Lunch, Evening Tea and Supper. This despite the fact that I was sharing with her my breakfast and lunch.
“That is my right and you should give me the meals for free. I cannot work under starving conditions!” She said rudely.
I looked back at my interview with her when she walked in, seeking a job.
“How much is rent?” I asked her. “KSh300 a month.”
“Ok. I will give you something temporary. Are you warm and friendly. Can you serve my guests well?”
“Yes Madam. I am very polite. I will work very well. I will not disappoint you.” She had pledged in the humblest voice possible. She had impressed me.
When I told her I could not afford to give in to her demands, Janet got enraged. She started shouting at the top of her voice. “I cannot work here, I cannot work in this useless, poor hotel where I cannot eat the way I like and the Boss is always around, always supervising staff, intoxicating staff with your permanent presence,” She complained.
“I think I may have to release you for insurbodination,” I told her. “Don’t even bother sacking me!” She said, as she removed her uniform and threw it on the table. I felt angry and depressed.
So that was my experience with Janet. For me, every experience is a lesson not a bowl of tears and regrets. From Janet, I learnt that staff generally hate their bosses and resent them, while some are jealous of their Bosses’ achievements; they only stay on because they have no alternative but deep in their hearts, they would rather stab you on the back and kill you. I learnt too, not to employ someone who is not trained in the area of specialisation. I further learnt that I should not employ someone out of sympathy but rather pay more for someone who has the right skills. I learnt too not to employ someone without a cv and referees. I kearnt that hiring a professional is expensive but cheaper in the long run. I also reassessed the working environment of my staff especially their eating conditions.
So Janet walked out on my job with my KSh3000, but leaving me all the wiser for it!