That ‘One’ Co-Worker/ Employee
In ‘almost’ every workplace, there’s always that ‘one’ person who isn’t contributing the most to the team. They’re the ones who are always MIA (missing in action) when they’re most needed. Or they’re the ones putting more time in goofing off, than actually doing their own work. I could go on and on, but I think we get the point. You may even have a name or two in mind because I know I do.
And so does our pal, “Petey”.
Way back then when he was a manager of a mid-size business, he had quite a few encounters with incompetent employees, but there was one who stood out the most to them. She had a horrible work ethic and attitude and it only got worse as he addressed those issues. Instead of trying to prove herself to her boss, she took another approach to get his attention.
Being the manager, one of Petey’s responsibilities was to ensure everyone on his team kept up with their own projects and clients. He noticed how everyone was good at their job, except for this new member, “Evelyn.”
At first, it seemed she would be a great addition to the team, however, as time went on, her true personality came out. She was the kind of person who could talk your ear off about all of her ideas/ goals and what she was working on, but never really seemed to have anything to show for it.
When clients started blowing up his phone and inbox, complaining how Evelyn hasn’t been following up with them, that was when Petey had his first one-on-one meeting with her. Little did he know, it would be the first of many. And every time, she had an excuse.
“Oh, this client is so difficult.”
“I’ve been so busy lately I haven’t got the chance to email that client. I was just about to do it.”
“Huh? I sent that client an email. Maybe it got lost in spam? “
There were always excuses, and never her fault.
It got to the point where Petey finally had enough. After the team’s monthly meetings, he called her into his office and explained if she couldn’t get her responsibilities done, then she needed to let him know. So that way, he could help her delegate resources to ensure things weren’t left undone.
Unlike his prior meetings with her, he was more direct this time.
He said, “I understand this job can be stressful. It’s okay if you need a bit of help. What’s not okay is if every time I ask about a project and you say, ‘Yep, everything’s good. I’ve got it under control’ and then, it all falls apart and your only response is to blame the client. Then that’s when we have a problem.’
He further explained going forward, she would need to check in with him every Monday morning to go over the objectives for the week and to check if she needed support with any of her clients.
Micromanaging is not fun for either party. However, since her performance impacted the whole team, it was the only solution. Petey even tried to keep the meetings as short as possible and mostly, just offered his assistance on stuff. In spite of that, Evelyn still hated his guts which he unfortunately expected. But what he didn’t expect was the extent of this new hatred until later on.
The Company Card
Another part of Petey’s manager role was being in charge of the department’s purchasing card. It was given to him to only make small purchases for the office or to spend up to $500 on clients. Since he didn’t need to use the card often, he kept it in his office which he shared with another team manager, “Bill.” Both could access it when needed.
They never had an issue with it until one day. When Friday morning came around, Petey received a call from the accounting department, asking about a few unusual purchases on the card.
Petey asked, “What were the purchases?”
They replied, “An Adobe subscription, a couple of UberEats orders, and an HBO subscription.”
He exclaimed, “I didn’t make those purchases. You should check with Bill. He also has access to the card.”
They said, “Will do!”
Apparently, Bill also didn’t have a clue on those purchases either. Because that Monday morning, both managers were called into the big boss’s office. After they both denied their involvement, his boss then asked the accounting department to investigate.
So they started calling Adobe’s customer service, Uber’s customer service, and basically everywhere else to figure out where those transactions came from. It didn’t take too long before they found out who the culprit was.
Petey had another meeting with the big boss, but this time, instead of with Bill, it was with one of the accountants.
The accountant said, “Not only are the accounts in your name, Petey, but they are also registered to an email address with your name in it.”
His heart dropped. He couldn’t understand how that was even possible, but before he could defend himself, his boss chimed in.
Boss: “Having access to his card is a privilege, Petey. You signed an agreement about appropriate use.”
He went on and on until finally, Petey was able to speak up.
Petey: “I don’t know how this happened! I can assure you none of those expenses are appropriate uses of company funds. There must have been some kind of mistake!”
Unfortunately, his boss didn’t seem too convinced. And to be honest, Petey also had his own doubts as he thought more of it.
Maybe I somehow saved the card on Google? Maybe my wife accidentally used it? Am I about to get fired?
That’s when he snapped back into reality.
He knew he had to prove his innocence, and save his job so he asked, “Can I please have the details and look into it?”
“Maybe My Personal Information Was Posted On The Dark Web?”
When Petey finally got out of the meeting, his job was still intact… for now. As he approached his office, he saw Evelyn waiting outside his door.
Evelyn said, “Hey! Been waiting for you for our morning meeting!”
Petey said, “Sorry, something just came up. Let’s reschedule for tomorrow.”
She asked, “Oh, will you be in tomorrow?”
Confused, Petey asked, “Yes, why would I not be in tomorrow?”
As she sipped on her tea, she said, “Oh, no reason.”
Then she turned around and walked to her desk. Something felt off with her, but Petey had bigger things to focus on — like saving his career and reputation. After he spoke with his wife, who didn’t even know there was a company card, he spent the next couple of hours calling the same establishments the accounting department spoke to. Everything the accountant had said was true, but how was that possible if he was also telling the truth? He didn’t do it.
It became very obvious someone had been using his name online to spend money from the company card. But how he questioned.
“Had I been hacked or something? Maybe my personal information was posted on the dark web? And these hackers just really wanted Photoshop and Wendy’s delivered?”
With no hope in mind, he called the last place on his list — Uber Eats. After explaining the situation to the customer service rep, and giving his name for his so-called account, the rep shared a very important piece of information.
The customer service rep said, “I can share with you the address of these food deliveries.”
As Petey jotted the address down, he couldn’t believe it was located in his city. At first, he felt relieved since this meant his data wasn’t sold online on the dark web. But then he became ticked off because this now meant, someone was intentionally out to get him. Someone he knew.
Petey was never a guy who liked to think the worst of people, but now he was. Thinking back to Evelyn’s remark, “Oh, will you be in tomorrow?” made him suspicious. So he pulled out her employee information and wrote down her address. Then he typed it in Google Maps, dropped a pin on her place, and compared it to the address Uber Eats gave him.
It was the corner of her block.
Unbelievable, but he knew this wasn’t enough information to convince his boss she was framing him. He needed more evidence. So when she left work for the day, Petey had IT give him access to her laptop. Sure enough, when he opened her email account, he saw just below her listed accounts was the same email account used for the transactions.
But again, he couldn’t act too fast. The IP address she had been using was the office, which would have tied right back to him. He had to give it to her, she played it smart. She created accounts with a fake email address, using his name. Even had the food delivered to a different address than her own so it wouldn’t come back to her.
But she did make one mistake, saving her passwords on a work computer.
Sweet, Sweet Revenge
That same night, Petey made a phone call to his boss, explaining the shocking revelations he had found on Evelyn’s laptop. Standing next to him was the IT guy, who was only there to testify Petey had no part in purposely planting that information on her laptop. But it seemed this time around, his boss didn’t need much convincing.
The next day, his boss called Evelyn into his office. While waiting for the verdict, Petey waited outside the hallway with his own cup of tea. Earlier when thinking back on why she would do such a thing, he realized she wanted to get back at him for calling her out on her poor work performance and making her actually work. Who knew that would be the reason for her trying to get him fired?
However, when she opened the door, it became quite clear she was the one who got fired. There were tears running down her face, but that didn’t stop Petey from sipping his tea as she walked right passed him. Although it got cold while he waited for her, it still tasted sweet. Just like his revenge.
And that wasn’t all.
That night, Petey had Wendy’s delivered to her house via Uber Eats. And no, he didn’t use the company card, he paid it with his own personal card. Since she made no efforts to speak with him after getting fired, not even to apologize for what she did, he thought this was the best way to end the feud. Since neither his boss nor himself wanted to get the police involved as they didn’t want to deal with the hassle.
In the end, she got what she deserved. Her revenge only backfired on her, which got her jobless. While Petey’s job remained intact. Karma at its finest.