November Curse Returns

November is cursed for me. :cry:

Old time users may recall a few years ago when I was new to the forum I posted about my then manager falling down a seaside cliff breaking a bone in his hand. He was off work for 17 weeks, meaning at the time I had to work 7 days per week to cover his shifts as well as my own. This happened on the 21st November 2006.

Last November the same manager left half way through a shift without talking to me and then the next morning resigned effective immediately. This was on a Friday morning leaving us short for the businest night of the week. Luckily then I had a trainee manager in place who was promptly promoted, but we were still short for a few weeks until we got a suitable replacement. At this time we were short of staff as many were away on leave for end of High School ( a stupid celebration time they dub “Leavers” where they go away for 2 weeks and get drunk, party and do other things), plus others at svhool or university were doing end of year exams. We were having a great deal of pain hiring a new person as a lot of people had taken up Christmas retail jobs. Again I did a number of weeks doing 7 days per week.

Yesterday the curse hit again. I got a call at 3pm by one of my staff asking if I could come in as my manager had hurt her hand at work and had to go to the doctors / hospital. I went in to find that she had sliced the tip of a finger off when she slipped while putting tomatoes through our slicer. The tip of the finger hit the spinning blade which sliced off the tip. We found the tip on top of a collander of sliced tomatoes which was promptly put on ice a sent to the hospital. My manager came in later on in the night with her arm in a sling telling me she is off work for 10 days. And guess what time of the year it is again? … November and “Leavers” time :roll: Luckily I will only be doing a few extra shifts as some of my better staff have left school and when they return from “Leavers” next week can pick up some extra shifts to cover the manager but I will still be doing 7 days per week for opening and closing etc as we haven’t replaced our assistant manager who left a couple of months ago. The financial crisis has affected our sales to a degree and the money needed to be saved plus my daughter is due to retrun from her 7 months overseas trip in 2 weeks and she wants to work at the shop again.

Next year I am getting a special calendar printed that has 6 weeks in October then goes directly to a 6 week December. This way we skip November and hopefully the curse will be broken. :smiley: Plus I get to miss my wife’s birthday on the 21st of November saving the embarassment of missing it and having to rack my brain on what present to buy her. :lol:

Oh, by the way my manager is fine, just a little sore and embarassed, and the tomatoes were thrown out. Plus all staff will be getting a reminder tarining on safety in the workplace.


My philosophy has always been to staff enough people to cover all our shifts plus a little extra to be able to call them in (keeping hours as an asset to employees). I never include myself in the schedule so I can fill in when needed but also show up at “random” times so they’re always on their toes.

It sounds like you’re in a college(ish) town, which means there are always people that would love to have the shifts your employees have. I like to keep that fresh in the minds of the kids that work for me, but knowing that it’s better to be able to keep trained people instead of bringing in new blood.

No. We’re in Australia where the empl;oyment market is way, way different to the US. Ours is where people are overpaid for underworking. It is a workers market where unemployment is ridiculously low and wages ridiculously high. Most food buisnesses here hire high school people because wages are way too high for the amount of money we make. We don’t have the luxury to have every position covered by having people hired for $6 an hour. Our minimum for a 15 year old is $8.60 plus penalty rates for evenings, weekends and public holidays (up to double time rate). At 20 they get paid $15 + per hour just for a unskilled counter hand, plus 9% superanuation paid by us if they earn $450 per month or more.

I wasn’t complaining about the prediciment I’m in at the moment but just having a light hearted moment about Cursed November.