When I started my job almost two years ago, I had no idea what to expect. I still couldn’t believe a man who’d been in business for more than 20 years wanted to make me the General Manager of his new multi-million dollar restaurant. I didn’t have a lick of experience and except for being a supervisor at my NYC restaurant job it was the closest I’d ever been to being a manager. But took the job I did and as they say in AA act as if. And I did. 2 years later I think I’m pretty good at my job.
I started my job on March 25, 2013. WOW. It’s actually just short of two years since I sent my email applying for the job. Anyway. I started my job in 3.25.13. The first few weeks were very fun. When you open a new restaurant you get to do things like look through catalogues to decide what kind of plates you want to use. The first day at my job I sent the owner of the company 15 emails. All about menus, and uniforms, and the such. I was a little worried that she’d think I’d gone overboard. But she responded and the ball was rolling.
The first members of my staff started April 15, 2013. Chris, Laura and Jen. By this time the bar manager had quit and been replaced. It was a full meeting with all of the staff including the chefs. It lasted all day. The next Tuesday, we met at the location of the restaurant to start interviewing potential new servers. We had back to back interviews scheduled all day. It went well but was exhausting.
On Wednesday, April 16, 2013 we met once again at the restaurant to chat about the previous day, to work on the handbook and start planning our training schedule. Around 4:15 I was meeting with Jen and Chris is my office when Chris went off on a tangent. Basically yelling at me for the next 25 minutes. I didn’t know what to think. It’s not really cool to yell at your boss on your third day of work. I was taken aback and a little bit pissed off. I finally told him to just shut up and sent him on his way. My next phone call was to my boss to tell him that I didn’t think Chris would work out and that we needed to cut our losses before it was too late. He agreed and asked whether I wanted to tell him he was fired or if I wanted him to do it. I suggested he do it, since I’d never fired anyone in my life. So my boss came into the office and we did it over the phone. Not the best solution but we didn’t want him to drive up the next day if he didn’t have to. By 6:00 it was done. I’d fired my first person. I thought that day it would be the hardest part of my job.
Turns out it is not the hardest part of my job. By the time someone forces me to fire them I’m usually done with them and it’s actually quite easy.
Which brings me to the point of my post. I have to fire someone tomorrow. She decided not to show up for work on Saturday. Which was a holiday weekend, Valentine’s Day weekend AND the beginning of Winter Vacation for public school kids. She has no idea this is coming. She’s been on thin ice for a while and I’ve saved her a couple of times already from her direct report supervisor. I told him on Saturday I couldn’t protect her anymore and that it was ultimately his decision. So at 10:30 tomorrow she’ll be unemployed. And really thought after that first day with the bar manager I’d feel bad, but I don’t.
My boss likes to say that we let people work for us to they don’t let themselves work for us anymore. And she has done that. I had another boss years ago that said it should never take more than two minutes. Your services are no longer needed. Gather your belongings and leave. What is that? Seven seconds. That will be my speech tomorrow.
I’ll let you know how it goes.