By Jessica Miller
I am a glorified adult babysitter. Being a manager of a business, you deal with phone calls even after you leave for the day. I receive phone calls about employee no shows and conflicts, computer issues, catering orders, and even from the store owner, my boss.
When an employee doesn’t show up, I am the first person who receives the phone call that they didn’t show up. I then attempt to reach the employee who didn’t show up to find out if they are just running later or if they quit. I had an employee named “Sam.” He thought it would be a good idea to show up to work drunk. He was so drunk he couldn’t hardly talk because his speech was so slurred; he was unable to stay balanced while standing, and also smelled like a skunked can of beer. When I told him he needed to leave, he proceeded to say, “You’re nothing but a fat dumb bitch and you need to go fuck yourself.” I then told him a second time to leave and he continued to scream and yell until finally after the third time I told him, “Either you leave or I will call the cops and have you escorted off my property.” Needless to say, he left. If they are running late, I inform them they need to hurry up and get to work. If they quit, I, then have to make more phone calls to find someone to work. If I can’t find someone to cover the shift I then have to go to work. I also receive calls about petty feuds that my employees have between each other. I then get to play therapist and try to help resolve the issue so they can go about the rest of their shift. I had an employee named “Rich,” who was so distraught because he was labeled the “store snitch” because he came in and talked to me about “Vince,” his co-worker not doing his job. When I confronted Vince about it, he knew immediately who said something and went to Rich. Rich ended up quitting because I talked to Vince about not doing his job just like Rich asked me to do. The worst part of this is that my employees are all grown adults.
As a manager, you also have to deal with technological problems. When our POS (point of sales) system goes down, we trouble shoot what could be wrong over the phone. The problem could be something as simple as changing the receipt paper to being as complex as the programming and internet having an error. One of the biggest technology problems I have experienced was when our computer system went down on “National Sandwich Day.” We lost thousands of dollars in sales that day all because of the internet being overloaded and there was nothing that I could do about it. So I had a lot of upset customers when we couldn’t take any credit cards. We are usually able to fix the problem but there are those instances when we have to contact Technology Support to get the problem fixed. Other minor issues I have to deal with are cash or bread shortages in the computer or how to void a transaction because someone rang up the wrong sandwich, or hit cash instead of credit card. Most technology problems are just minor ones.
Every now and again I have to explain how to complete a catering order. I walk them through the process step by step. They have to ask for personal information along with date and time pick up for the order. They have to find out what kind of bread, meat, cheese, vegetables, and sauces they want. However, our catering is not limited to just party subs. We offer sandwich platters, cookie platters, lunch boxes and meat and cheese trays. We can accommodate any size group that you need to feed. I truly enjoy making the giant party subs. It is a very relaxing task to do because I get to braid the bread and make something as plain as a loaf of bread into an astonishing braid. The biggest party sub I have ever made was 27 feet long. “Marissa,” my assistant manager, and I braided all the bread for that order and it took us over 2 hours to braid all the bread for that catering order. Generally it would only take a few minutes to make a small 3 footer. It is very time consuming but also very awesome to see what exactly I am capable of.
Last but certainly not least, I receive calls from my boss “Mitch,” the store owner. Our conversations range from finances to store maintenance and repairs. Our financial conversations are usually about employee raises, store profit and weekly and daily sales. One such recent conversation was about my closer “Debbie.” Debbie always worries about if she is doing a good enough job or if she is going to lose her job to a new hire. I reassure her almost every day that she does an outstanding job and that her job is not in jeopardy, but she still worries. So one night, while Debbie was working her normal closing shift, Mitch, our owner called Debbie at the store and told her what a phenomenal job she was doing and to keep up the good work. So because of her outstanding job performance, she received a raise. The maintenance conversations we have are usually about how to improve the appearance and functionality of the store. An improvement we currently have been looking into is putting an outside dining area for our customers for during the summer and more parking space. Our recent repair was the cooling system to our bain. The bain is our sandwich unit where the meats, cheeses, vegetables and condiments are kept for the customers. Although it seems like a lot, my boss and I don’t have lengthy conversations all the time; just when it comes to serious issues. The most serious issue I can remember having is I went in to go to the bathroom and oh my goodness it was absolutely disgusting. I was literally wading in human feces and urine because of the city pipes backing up. After the city got the pipe replaced and everything settled down I had to go outside into my parking lot and clean up nasty used tampons that had helped plug up the sewer line. I also found straws, paper towels, and a pocket knife. It was by far the most disgusting thing I have ever had to do as a manager.
My job as a manager at Subway is not all about phone calls and other job related functions. However, I do spend a lot of my personal time on the phone with work related issues.