Twits! Encountered two during early morning hours recently.
Job was picking up food processing equipment at a Colorado Front Range location and delivering it to Iowa - straight shot - no delays.
At the destination, encountered Twit #1, the security guard. She can be excused, about 18, dumb as box of rocks, but did have enough sense to call her supervisor.
The supervisor directed me to the proper location and said he would alert someone to meet me.
Now enters twit #2, a 50+ year old woman. Looking at her you could see, in the words of George MacDonald Fraser’s character, Flashman, “The fading beauty of a dying vulture”. Personality to match. You could readily see, she was a “grievance” monster pulling a lifelong grievance train.
The best way to deal with these types is to kill them with good cheer. Smiling, jovial, overflowing with good humor, etc. All an act; I’m a dour, grumpy old man but can play many roles.
Conversation goes something like this.
Twit. “Our receiving department isn’t open until 7:30.”
Me. “This is an emergency shipment. Someone needs these parts badly enough to have them driven 580 miles with no delays. I just need to have someone with a forklift unload it from my van.”
Twit. “Well, I can’t drive a forklift”.
Me. In my head. Liar, liar. A shipping/receiving supervisor who isn’t forklift certified? Bullshit.
Me. “I can drive a forklift”.
Twit. “I can’t let you drive one of OUR forklifts”.
Me, jovial and all. “Here is the packing list. Who, here, do you think would use these kinds of parts”?
Twit. “Probably, Randy”.
Affable me. “Maybe you could call Randy”?
Twit disappears into her castle (with a locked door). About ten minutes later, Randy and a crew of four arrive. A forklift appears, the van is unloaded, and four men start unpacking the load while Randy signs for it. He has been waiting for me. Twit never reappears.
A lifetime habit is to always thank people for anything and everything. Stopping at the gate, thanked Twit #1, and then thanked her supervisor when he appeared.
He wanted to talk. Asked me about Twit #2. Seems she had ripped into him over the telephone when he called her. He was delighted to learn the shipment had been unloaded and signed for. Told me Twit #2 was widely regarded by the graveyard crew as a pain in the ass. Had some sort of “connection” that protected her.
Twit #2 probably will never understand I was helping her. A courier driver is like a taxi; the meter is running. I could just as easily pulled out of there and taken a four hour nap on their dime.
No matter how connected she is, knowledge the plant was down while the parts were available, plus a four hours standby charge, would have caused her to catch the rough edge of someone’s tongue.
People like Twit #2 really bother me. They are a cancer in any organization. During my years in management, I helped many of them out the door.
I never, not once, fired someone for a bad decision while trying to solve a problem. Talk to the, yes. Something along these lines. “I really appreciate you took action when ___________ came up. Should something like that happen again, you should consider ________”.
Never have shied away from making decisions. Some of them got me fired (more than once). That is ok; not a place I needed to be working. For sure it didn’t kill me.
The number of big rigs running I-80, day and night, good weather and bad, never ceases to amaze me. Nothing to see twenty or more at a time. Those people have my total respect. It is a very hard job that requires both skill and judgment.
Now for a little (grim) humor.
And so, keep on keeping on!