Ch-ch-ch-ch Changes….

So – I’m interrupting my trip down psycho lane with dear ol’ Billie – to share a little tidbit regarding my current status here on planet earth. It is the Wren State of the Union address. Yesterday, we had a little visit from our District boss to our retail center. We have two sister stores there, and I am the manager of one of them. Or should I say, was the manager of one of them.

Do not gasp too loudly – I still have a job. Just not the same one. Because of the delightful economic climate that all of us are dealing with across the country, the company I work for had to make some decisions, and in several centers where there are sister stores (such as my own), they chose to eliminate one of the manager positions. In this case, mine was the one eliminated. So, it was offered to me to step down into the Assistant Manager position, and go from being salary exempt to hourly, and taking a small pay cut.

The ramifications of this soon set in. You mean, I no longer have to work overtime and not get paid for it? You mean you are tearing away my ability to work ten to thirteen hour shifts to save money on payroll? You are forcing me to get paid for the actual work I do? What? How dare you!

Ironically, since my alter-ego’s writing career has taken off, the amount of time I typically put into my job – an average of 45-50 hours per week, with the occasional 60 -70, coupled with writing deadlines, blogging and promos – has created a lot of stress for me and my family; so hubby and I had already been discussing me stepping down. Now, knowing that I will only be able to work 32 – 40 hours per week, has just created a huge amount of wiggle room that didn’t exist before. The slight dip in income will be unwelcome for a few months, but I am counting on my newfound ability to crank out some more writing to make up for it. This could actually be the best thing that could have happened for me.

Yeah, I’m not the big cheese anymore, but I still have a decent paying job and all my same benefits. It could’ve been MUCH worse, as it has been for me in the past, and is for many, many others.

Alrighty – off to do some more writing and get ready for my last couple days as manager before the big shift change. Tomorrow is my last open to close shift, and we are celebrating with pizza. Go team!


2 comments on “Ch-ch-ch-ch Changes….

  1. This proves that any situation is what you make of it and how you react to it. I’m glad this was relatively (?) good news for you. And as you say yourself, if you do wind up having to work extra hours, at least you’ll get paid for them.

    It’s appalling to me that in retail people are expected to put in a 70 hour week (as the manager) and not get paid for the time. If you compared what you were making hourly to what a typical assistant manager makes hourly, I wonder who’d be making more as an hourly wage? Unless managers get extra bonuses when the store location “beats” its sales goals, I don’t see how being a manager is a plus?

    Whatever companies may think, having a title (Manager) doesn’t and shouldn’t substitute for actually getting paid. It gets me hot under the collar how retail companies treat their employees. I may be thinking more of a WalMart here, but still…you’re just trying to make an honest living Wren.

    I do hope this works out better for you, and the flexibility is just the thing that gives you more time to do more writing. 🙂

  2. Yeah – that whole salary exempt thing is pretty lame. I did the same thing in my last job as the Director of a children’s museum. A friend of mine who is an assistant manager with our company, has been an exempt manager at two prior retail stores. His comment was that he had once figured out how much he was actually making per hour – figuring in all of the unpaid overtime – and was making less than some of his part-times sales floor help. He swore “never again”. And again I say – lame.
    Today was my last day doing an overtime shift before the change in status on Monday. I am so exhausted tonight, as I typically am on days like this, and it such a relief to know that it will be the exception – as opposed to the rule – for me to have this type of day anymore. And when I do – I will be compensated for it.

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