This Corporate mindset was EXACTLY as you have described, Marla.
Long before I was demoted and and fired, there were ominous and troubling symptoms of an oppressive and dictatorial Corporate modus operanti:
My Manager could not get through the day without (as you have just said), receiving at least one directive from the ED to "jump". "How far do you want me to jump?", I could almost hear her ask, as she had to stop what she was doing, in order to carry out the ED's insatiable need for instant gratification.
There was also an incident involving the welfare of a Client in which she was unjustly reprimanded for. I have since removed the details from this post to protect his/her privacy.
Fast forward to a few weeks later: My sister has become desperately ill with a potententially life-threatening, flesh-eating bacterial infection and my BIL has just been told that his cancer has returned and invaded the wall of his bladder, requiring
immediate radical surgery. As with past employers, I did not hesitate to inform my supervisor(s) that I had a true
family emergency and needed time off. This request was unconditionally approved and in advance by my
One can only imagine how dumbfounded and flabergasted I was (my BIL had just been discharged home from the hospital and was not doing well at all), when I was summoned to my Manager's office and reemed out by the ED for "demanding" to be off. When I attempted to defend myself by reminding my Manager in front of her that she
had approved my time off, the ED scathingly (I still get chills, when I think about it), and with a sinister silkiness essentially
blackmailed me into making a choice between "keeping my job or caring for my family".
I should have stood up right then and there and told both of them that if they think that this is a contest
between keeping this (censored) job and caring for my family, guess who just won and walked out.
Instead, I remained slumped back in my chair, near tears and reduced to feeling like utter crap, as the ED moved in for "The Kill". She had me right where she wanted me, for she knew how I desperately needed this job. How was I to know beforehand that asking for time off to be with sick family members was not allowed...unless my Manager had told me? She didn't.
That was two weeks ago.
On Thursday, I am (once) again summoned into my Manager's office and terminated.
"Just tell me what I have done wrong, so I can correct it and not do it again", I pleaded.
"You have a bad attitude", The ED responded.
"Can you give me an example?", I asked.
She wouldn't (or couldn't)...take your pick.
"You're not a 'fit' for this job", I am told.
I am then instructed to turn in my key to the office and leave....now.
As I am gathering my personal items, the ED makes a hasty retreat, exiting the office VIA the front door (she usually leaves VIA the back door, where the Nurses' Room....and I am located.
A few minutes later I march myself into my Manager's office, key in hand. I am standing in front of her desk and as she looks up and her eyes meet mine, I give her a look of utter disgust, drop the key with a loud "plunk", turn on my heel and leave. I am not done, as I slam the back door behind me.
I made up my mind yesterday as I lay in bed all day with a sick migraine that I am far from finished with them.
For starters, I am going straight to my local Unemployment office on Monday and file for benefits. If they fight my claim, I will appeal....and win. Why? Because the only disciplinary action they have on file which has my signature on it was for an ommission of documentation issue which had been amicably addressed with my Manager weeks before the "time-off" issue came up. Secondly, I am going to discuss with whomever is handling my claim whether or not I may have a valid Workplace Harassment complaint against my former employer. It wasn't just the way I was treated from the day I was punished for taking time off to be with my family during a series of unforseen medical crises, but also the often (and vulgar, I might add), profanity used in that office by my former Manager. Though the profanity was not directed at me or the two nurses I worked with (they were aware of it, too), it made me feel uncomfortable, just the same.
I have also made up my mind, Marla, that no matter what the future may hold for me, I am through being a
victim of the blatant and cruel treatment of employees which is so pervasive in today's Corporate culture. I blame myself for allowing it to happen, lest I risked losing my livlihood. Not anymore. I have little left to lose...and I
am going to preserve what little dignity I have left, by ensuring that this company never treats someone else again the way they have treated me.