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You can't retire; you know too much

Last post 12-19-2012 8:25 AM by boomzilla. 41 replies.
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  • 12-14-2012 11:07 AM

    You can't retire; you know too much

    This converation just happened inside the closed office of boss+2 across the hall from my desk (I can hear through the glass wall, so closing the door is kind of a moot point).

    Soon-To-Be-Retiree: I have worked 40+ years and want to retire sometime in the next few months.

    B+2: You know way too much about the opeation; we need your experience to keep this place running

    STBR: I can transfer knowledge

    B+2: We don't have anyone on the team who can absorb that much knowledge in the time available

    STBR: Tough shit I can't work forever; I'm ill

    B+2: You can't retire (yet)

    STBR: That ship has sailed; I'm retiring at the end of January

    B+2: That's not enough time

    STBR: No, it's not enough time only if I continue to write code until my last day. If I stop coding now, there is plenty of time to transfer key knowledge. Get someone to sit with me now and I'll start to transfer information and document everything.

    B+2:  But you're working on the widget project and we can't afford to lose you

    STBR: I told everyone - last year - that I was going to work one more year; you had plenty of time to plan things out

    B+2: ... (gets cut off)

    STBR: Bottom line: I have cancer and want to spend what time I have left with my family; not here.

    Honestly, what did this manager expect the guy to do?

    Be brief, no matter how long it takes.
  • 12-14-2012 11:12 AM In reply to

    Re: You can't retire; you know too much

    There's a joke email that used to circulate regarding HR rules. One line I remember was that death (yours) was an acceptable reason to miss work, but you were required to notify the company at least 2 years ahead of time so that they could train your replacement.

    At least I used to think it was a joke email, now I'm not so sure.

  • 12-14-2012 11:23 AM In reply to

    • locallunatic
    • Top 50 Contributor
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    Re: You can't retire; you know too much

    Really unless a smooth transition is needed for parts of a retirement plan to kick in properly (like survivor benefits) it sounds like STBR should have just given a "F' you, I'm out".

  • 12-14-2012 11:32 AM In reply to

    Re: You can't retire; you know too much

     Personally, if I were on a downward cancel spiral,  I can't even imagine working for another 6 weeks as this guy is offering to do.

    Be brief, no matter how long it takes.
  • 12-14-2012 11:34 AM In reply to

    Re: You can't retire; you know too much

    locallunatic:

    Really unless a smooth transition is needed for parts of a retirement plan to kick in properly (like survivor benefits) it sounds like STBR should have just given a "F' you, I'm out".

     

    Boss: "But the notice you've given us is not enough time!"

    Retiree: "You know what? You're absolutely right. So I guess there's no difference between me retiring at the end of January, and me retiring now. I'mma gonna go grab my stuff from my desk. Merry Christmas."

     


    HardwareGeek:

    <blink> and you're dead!



    "Where is grumpy cat?"
    - Mozilla's MOST ADVANCED USER!
  • 12-14-2012 11:35 AM In reply to

    Re: You can't retire; you know too much

    This story is too depressing to be funny.

    Signatures are stupid.
  • 12-14-2012 1:21 PM In reply to

    Re: You can't retire; you know too much

     if you can manage to make peace with your own death, this story becomes funny again!

  • 12-14-2012 1:35 PM In reply to

    Re: You can't retire; you know too much

    I thought that knowing too much about the operation often is a reason for early retirement, even if it's not usually voluntary?
  • 12-14-2012 1:52 PM In reply to

    Re: You can't retire; you know too much

     On the bright side, this guys is now essentially unfireable. He should have some fun with that.

  • 12-14-2012 2:36 PM In reply to

    Re: You can't retire; you know too much

    Zylon:

     On the bright side, this guys is now essentially unfireable. He should have some fun with that.

    I second that...  "Casual Friday" has just become "Pants-Optional Friday", which follows "Get Sloshed before 10:00AM Thursday", and so on.
  • 12-14-2012 3:09 PM In reply to

    Re: You can't retire; you know too much

    snoofle:

    STBR: I can transfer knowledge

    Run snoofle, run!

    snoofle:

    But you're working on the widget project and we can't afford to lose you

    Wow, this widget must be VERY important for the business

  • 12-14-2012 3:20 PM In reply to

    Re: You can't retire; you know too much

    ubersoldat:
    (snip)

    snoofle:

    But you're working on the widget project and we can't afford to lose you

    Wow, this widget must be VERY important for the business

     

    Well, I guess snooflecorp just needs to cure cancer, then. Maybe some good will come out of this mess after all!

     

  • 12-14-2012 3:26 PM In reply to

    • Delve
    • Not Ranked
    • Joined on 09-27-2012
    • Posts 14

    Re: You can't retire; you know too much

    ubersoldat:
    snoofle:

    STBR: I can transfer knowledge

    Run snoofle, run!

    If he's still reading this it's probably too late.

    This would be less funny though if I weren't watching it over here too. The lead admin on our core system is retiring in 2013. Thus far HR is pretty much oblivious because Mr. Pointyhair is in denial. She's been, quite vocally, tracking her short-timer's calendar for about 1.5 years now.

  • 12-14-2012 4:09 PM In reply to

    Re: You can't retire; you know too much

    snoofle:
    Personally, if I were on a downward cancel spiral,  I can't even imagine working for another 6 weeks as this guy is offering to do.
    Yeah, the only reason off the top of my head would be to make sure that my family was provided for. It's possible that after those 6 weeks, some milestone kicks in, pension / social security / etc.
    I denounce myself for this post
  • 12-14-2012 4:15 PM In reply to

    • locallunatic
    • Top 50 Contributor
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    Re: You can't retire; you know too much

    boomzilla:
    snoofle:
    Personally, if I were on a downward cancel spiral,  I can't even imagine working for another 6 weeks as this guy is offering to do.
    Yeah, the only reason off the top of my head would be to make sure that my family was provided for. It's possible that after those 6 weeks, some milestone kicks in, pension / social security / etc.

    The other possibility is to keep insurance to cover a time extender surgery or chemo/radiation; as those are expensive and sticking family with an extra bill is something to be minimized.

  • 12-14-2012 4:42 PM In reply to

    • Delve
    • Not Ranked
    • Joined on 09-27-2012
    • Posts 14

    Re: You can't retire; you know too much

    locallunatic:
    The other possibility is to keep insurance to cover a time extender surgery or chemo/radiation; as those are expensive and sticking family with an extra bill is something to be minimized.
    Or simply coverage for pain management meds.
  • 12-14-2012 5:43 PM In reply to

    • locallunatic
    • Top 50 Contributor
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    Re: You can't retire; you know too much

    Delve:
    Or simply coverage for pain management meds.

    Less likely as those tend to be relatively cheap, especially when you are using up limited time for cost coverage.

  • 12-14-2012 10:05 PM In reply to

    Re: You can't retire; you know too much

    I saw this about 2 months ago at my office. Team member X was going on maternity leave, and filled a critical role in the project process during a period with some very large deadlines. X is 100% allocated to our project, and has been for months.

    --- 1 month before baby-day ---

    Me and my PM: "Team member X is going on maternity leave in about a month. We need a dedicated replacement while they're out. We need the replacement at least a week early to train and ramp up."

    X's Manager: "What exact date. I need at least 1 week notice."

    Me and my PM: "Sometime around Date, it's a baby."

    --- 2 weeks until baby-day ---

    Me and my PM: "Team member X is going on maternity leave around Date. We need a dedidated replacement while they're out. We need the replacement next week to train and ramp up."

    X's Manager: "What exact date. I need at least 1 week notice."

    Me and my PM: "Sometime around Date. That's only 2 weeks away. We need their replacement for training next week."



    --- 1 week until baby-day ---

    Me and my PM: "Where is X's dedicated replacement so we can train them?"

    X's Manager: "There's no-one available. You needed to tell me a week ago so I could staff them. I can give you Y for a few scattered hours this week, but you won't have Y as your dedicated resource when X is gone."



    --- 2 days until baby-day ---

    Me and my PM: "Where is X's replacement. X is leaving in the next day or two. The baby's almost here."

    X's Manager: "What exact date? I needed to know at least a week in advance that X would be out. I don't have anyone available."

    Me and my PM: "We need someone now. Baby can come at any time."



    --- 1 day until baby-day --- Me and my PM: "Where's X's replacement"

    X's Manager: "Well you can't have Y. Here's Z. I moved heaven and earth to get Z available. But you don't get Z next week. Only today. I needed to know at least a week ahead of time that you wanted a dedicated replacement for X."



    --- Day after baby-day ---

    X's Manager: "Here's A, B, and C. A can work from 2:15 on Monday to 3:45, and then from 8:30 to 9:02 on Friday. B can work on Wednesday as long as it doesn't rain. And C can work from 10 minutes ago until 5 minutes from now. But you can't have any of them next week."
  • 12-15-2012 3:12 AM In reply to

    Re: You can't retire; you know too much

     Meaning that there was never provision for a replacement and the manager does not think you need one.  You are trying to force a problem onto a manager who expects you to have the solution already - perhaps he is seeing if you can reorganize your work you can manage.


  • 12-15-2012 3:17 AM In reply to

    Re: You can't retire; you know too much

    dynedain:
    [baby day fiasco]
    See, this is exactly why women are under-represented in IT. Their unpredictable schedules make them hard to plan around.
  • 12-15-2012 5:16 AM In reply to

    Re: You can't retire; you know too much

    Sounds like a "pack your bag on Thursday night and e-mail your phone number on Friday" situation. Oh, and don't forget to charge US$100 per hour for answering the phone. You may not need the cash but your wife and kids will.

  • 12-15-2012 7:30 AM In reply to

    • Zemm
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    • Gold Coast, Australia
    • Posts 1,380

    Re: You can't retire; you know too much

    dynedain:
    X's Manager: "What exact date. I need at least 1 week notice."
    Wow. Our first born came almost 2 weeks late and our second was 4 weeks early. (Well "second" was "second and third"; being twins they were expected to be early)

    My wife did go on maternity leave when agreed, but then they illegally fired her during that time. She got a bit of money out of them to avoid taking them to court. It was strange, she got the letter the day before she had planned to let them know she had decided she wasn't going to come back, so I guess it worked out a few grand in our favour!

    Now it'll cost more for her to go to work than to stay home.

    Filed Under: Can you think of something that talks, other than a person?
  • 12-15-2012 7:51 AM In reply to

    • TGV
    • Top 75 Contributor
    • Joined on 10-09-2005
    • Posts 703

    Re: You can't retire; you know too much

    How can some pompous ass of a manager say "you can't" when the guy obviously can? Why does a manager need a one week reminder from his/her subordinates when in a normal world managers are in essence there to take care of precisely that kind of problem?

    What is the matter with those people? What is the f*ing matter?

  • 12-15-2012 8:47 AM In reply to

    • Delve
    • Not Ranked
    • Joined on 09-27-2012
    • Posts 14

    Re: You can't retire; you know too much

    I don't know about you but my manager does his job just fine. He's incredibly efficient at delegating. Everything. Especially the blame.
  • 12-15-2012 12:14 PM In reply to

    Re: You can't retire; you know too much

    With my blurry eye's I read it as
    Delve:
    Or simply coverage for management's meds.
    It sounds like snoofles management is forgetting to take their meds.
  • 12-15-2012 2:39 PM In reply to

    Re: You can't retire; you know too much

    Threads like this make me realize how lucky I am and how much most companies suck.  If I give my employer 1 year notice of retirement they will pay me a bonus of a couple thousand dollars when I retire.  Of course, if I have cancer and I'm going to die in a few months then it's not worth much, but I still think it's a pretty good way to treat your emplyees who have worked for you for a long time.
  • 12-17-2012 7:54 AM In reply to

    Re: You can't retire; you know too much

    Love it, I did something similar when I quit my last job.

    I was doing more than I should have been whilst on lower grade pay, at first I didn't care as the work was much more interesting and even the lower grade pay was pretty good, combine that with a nice environment, excellent holidays, no pressure, flexible hours and I didn't care that I was doing a better job at managing our systems than the people who were paid to do it.

    However a twist in circumstances made me want the extra money so instead of politely asking each year if I could be put on the higher grade and presenting yet another years worth of records to justify it I tried to force the issue.
    I basically said "Put this in my job description (and of course you will have to re-grade the job in line with that) or I stop doing it."

    Long story short it didn't work and soured the atmosphere, there was basically no way they were going to let some underling into their boys club.

    Of course it bit them in the arse in the end because on the lower grade I didn't have to give much notice, if one of them had left he would have had to give six months, I only had to give a couple of weeks.

    All I left them with was a list of admin passwords for the boxes I was using along with all the source code and a "You work it out!"
  • 12-17-2012 10:48 AM In reply to

    Re: You can't retire; you know too much

    dynedain:
    I needed to know at least a week ahead of time that you wanted a dedicated replacement for X."
     

    So what happened when you actully told the manager that you did in fact let him know several weeks ahead of time?


    In complex analysis, a meromorphic function on an open subset D of the complex plane is a function that is holomorphic on all D except a set of isolated points

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  • 12-17-2012 11:17 AM In reply to

    • locallunatic
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    Re: You can't retire; you know too much

    dhromed:

    dynedain:
    I needed to know at least a week ahead of time that you wanted a dedicated replacement for X."
     

    So what happened when you actully told the manager that you did in fact let him know several weeks ahead of time?

    Oh, oh, I bet I know this one!  Without an exact date to use for scheduling it doesn't count as notice.

  • 12-17-2012 11:38 AM In reply to

    • DCRoss
    • Top 500 Contributor
    • Joined on 07-26-2009
    • Tronna
    • Posts 145

    Re: You can't retire; you know too much

    dynedain:
    X's Manager: "What exact date. I need at least 1 week notice."

    Me and my PM: "Sometime around Date, it's a baby."
     

    Well there's your problem.   Clearly you need to have a discussion with your suppliers about having more reliable ship dates for babies.  How do they think they will stay in business without a reliable supply chain?

  • 12-17-2012 12:04 PM In reply to

    • Renan
    • Top 75 Contributor
    • Joined on 08-10-2007
    • Fortaleza, Brazil
    • Posts 731

    Re: You can't retire; you know too much

    I've seen situations where STBR wanted to quit, and the company offered a multiplier on their salary for them to stay. In one case the STBR employee asked why the company didn't give him such a raise sooner. His boss was sincere about it: "well, you never mentioned anything about quitting until now". This STBR's last words to his boss were "fuck you very much".
    snoofle

    That hideousness is what keeps you and I [sic] employed!
  • 12-17-2012 2:04 PM In reply to

    Re: You can't retire; you know too much

    Renan:
    In one case the STBR employee asked why the company didn't give him such a raise sooner. His boss was sincere about it: "well, you never mentioned anything about quitting until now".
     

    Similar situation in a previous job: over the course of a year, pay increments were discussed but each time the technical dickhead my line manager kept giving reasons why there was no money in the pot: "we've just spent money on new kit/we've just opened a new office/we've just taken on new sales staff."

    In the end I was headhunted by a former boss on a minor increment (she'd assumed an increment so incorrect predicted my current salary being higher) and once I handed in my notice my then boss excitedly revealed to me that he'd got the authority to offer a whopping 25% increase for me not to go.

    I discussed it with SWMBO who was gobsmacked that they'd dug so deep, but we both came to the conclusion that the extra moola was a bonus rather than a necessity - we were living within our means quite admirably and I'd still have to put up with his fuckwitted incompetence management style - so I pondered proceeding with my plans to jump ship. That, plus each successive pay review would revolve around how much I could be bribed to stay, rather than pay increments awarded against my value to the company.

    The clincher was me finding out that morning that he'd already been walking around boasting to others that I was staying, telling people "it's just a matter of " then rubbing his thumb and fingers together to indicate I could be bought.

    I took great delight in walking.

  • 12-17-2012 2:29 PM In reply to

    Re: You can't retire; you know too much

    Renan:
    "fuck you very much"
    I'm going to use that; I don't know when, but I AM going to use it!

    *thank you*

     

    Be brief, no matter how long it takes.
  • 12-17-2012 2:37 PM In reply to

    Re: You can't retire; you know too much

    snoofle:

    Renan:
    "fuck you very much"
    I'm going to use that; I don't know when, but I AM going to use it!

    *thank you*

     

    When I read it, it was in an Elvis impersonator's voice.

    Signatures are stupid.
  • 12-17-2012 2:39 PM In reply to

    Re: You can't retire; you know too much

    snoofle:
    I'm going to use that; I don't know when, but I AM going to use it!

    You've never heard that expression? It's... uhh... pretty common.

     

  • 12-17-2012 7:00 PM In reply to

    Re: You can't retire; you know too much

    locallunatic:

    dhromed:

    dynedain:
    I needed to know at least a week ahead of time that you wanted a dedicated replacement for X."
     

    So what happened when you actully told the manager that you did in fact let him know several weeks ahead of time?

    Oh, oh, I bet I know this one!  Without an exact date to use for scheduling it doesn't count as notice.

    Bingo. Give the man a prize!
  • 12-17-2012 7:24 PM In reply to

    Re: You can't retire; you know too much

    Oh, and the irony is that X's manager is female whereas X is male (I guess that makes it paternity leave). And X's manager wasn't trying to push anything on us. She has no authority over the project. She just is not suited for a managerial role and continuously flubs up resourcing across the various projects her team is involved in.
  • 12-18-2012 7:17 AM In reply to

    Re: You can't retire; you know too much

    dhromed:
    dynedain:
    I needed to know at least a week ahead of time that you wanted a dedicated replacement for X."
     

    So what happened when you actully told the manager that you did in fact let him know several weeks ahead of time?

    I was leading my very first project when I was trying to staff it.

    - I told my manager that I needed an extra resource in about two months time but nobody got assigned to my project.

    - One month later I reminded her that I needed that extra resource for the next month but nobody got assigned to my project.

    - Three weeks later I reminded her I needed the extra resource for next week.

    Her answer to my last reminder: "You should have told me sooner. Now it's too late to adjust the resource planning. "

    "But I told you already two months ago and again 1 month ago."

    "Yeah, but that was too early, I hadn't begun working on the resource planning for this month yes"

     

    It's... Monkey Piston's Frying Circle!
  • 12-18-2012 2:23 PM In reply to

    Re: You can't retire; you know too much

    Cassidy:

    Renan:
    In one case the STBR employee asked why the company didn't give him such a raise sooner. His boss was sincere about it: "well, you never mentioned anything about quitting until now".
     

    Similar situation in a previous job: over the course of a year, pay increments were discussed but each time the technical dickhead my line manager kept giving reasons why there was no money in the pot: "we've just spent money on new kit/we've just opened a new office/we've just taken on new sales staff."

    In the end I was headhunted by a former boss on a minor increment (she'd assumed an increment so incorrect predicted my current salary being higher) and once I handed in my notice my then boss excitedly revealed to me that he'd got the authority to offer a whopping 25% increase for me not to go.

    I discussed it with SWMBO who was gobsmacked that they'd dug so deep, but we both came to the conclusion that the extra moola was a bonus rather than a necessity - we were living within our means quite admirably and I'd still have to put up with his fuckwitted incompetence management style - so I pondered proceeding with my plans to jump ship. That, plus each successive pay review would revolve around how much I could be bribed to stay, rather than pay increments awarded against my value to the company.

    The clincher was me finding out that morning that he'd already been walking around boasting to others that I was staying, telling people "it's just a matter of " then rubbing his thumb and fingers together to indicate I could be bought.

    I took great delight in walking.

    I got the opposite effect at my last place. My first real job out of school. Learned loads under a great supervisor, but was ready to spread my own wings. Undervalued, overworked, etc. I interviewed and was accepted at my current place with a whopping 40% pay increase, nice government-job bennies, and the kicker was it was within walking distance from home. Of course, I got the plea "what would it take me to stay?" 50% was my reply, knowing they would never go for it. They came back with 10%.

    They then had to hire two people to replace me.

  • 12-18-2012 3:04 PM In reply to

    Re: You can't retire; you know too much

    dynedain:
    locallunatic:

    dhromed:

    dynedain:
    I needed to know at least a week ahead of time that you wanted a dedicated replacement for X."
     

    So what happened when you actully told the manager that you did in fact let him know several weeks ahead of time?

    Oh, oh, I bet I know this one!  Without an exact date to use for scheduling it doesn't count as notice.

    Bingo. Give the man a prize!
     

    Your prize is-- cancer.

     


    HardwareGeek:

    <blink> and you're dead!



    "Where is grumpy cat?"
    - Mozilla's MOST ADVANCED USER!
  • 12-19-2012 8:18 AM In reply to

    • Zecc
    • Top 25 Contributor
    • Joined on 06-12-2007
    • and hasn't left since.
    • Posts 2,057

    Re: You can't retire; you know too much

    joe.edwards:
    snoofle:

    Renan:
    "fuck you very much"
    I'm going to use that; I don't know when, but I AM going to use it!

    *thank you*

     

    When I read it, it was in an Elvis impersonator's voice.

    You are not alone.

     

    If mixed metaphors were illegal, I'd be having an indigestion.
    typeof NaN == 'number'
    var ò_ó, ಠ⁔ಠ, ᄒᆺᄒ, ᅙᅳᅙ, ᖛᨓᖜ, ꖴᅩꖴ, ఠᨋఠ; // Naming your variables is serious business
  • 12-19-2012 8:25 AM In reply to

    Re: You can't retire; you know too much

    Zecc:
    You are not alone.
    The post is coming from inside the house!
    I denounce myself for this post
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