GAME OVER

Colleagues, friends,

some of you know that I have resigned and therefore I would like to write, what I have to say before my leaving. It will be longer, so I will try to divide it into chapters. It will be stories as examples of what is going on there. It will be maybe a bit about me, it will be about you and it will be about our leaders.

BEHAVIOR OF LINE-MANAGERS

I can’t judge so much if it’s the same situation everywhere, but sometimes it’s quite as a hell on logistic department. Unfortunately, anyone from TL to up is basically untouchable. I tried to point out these things with my activities, as a representative of the OÚP for logistics. I pointed out for example to so-called abnormal tests. Not because it is nonsense that is unparalleled elsewhere. Perhaps it is partly useful if it is applied as originally intended. Unfortunately, we live in the Czech Republic and we are not a suitable nation for this. In addition, taking into account that the functions were distributed in past, and TL (somewhere in GL), are people with primary schools without the slightest prerequisites for team leadership. TLs often treated with their own problems and bullied subordinates during abnormal tests. These abnormal tests were not real. All of this was reflected into the rating. Abnormal tests have been reassessed (at least on „my“ shift B) and are no longer counted in evaluation. Seemingly the small victory, but otherwise it is not possible to do it anyway.

There was also the situation when one of GL, who was inappropriate in front of the whole team at the ten-minute meeting to the address of an old loyal TM who had taken the OČR (time off to treat the family member) because of his child, what was by law. After that four people (independent on each other) visit me. Some of them because of my representative function, some of them as a friend. I did not care about the TM (he is not in the unions, and he have never visited me). I was concerned about the unsuitable behavior of GL, who can’t afford anything like that. I have a natural respect for people with high status and it is up to those people to deal with it. This manager totally disappointed me. He thought that his solution would satisfy me and that it would be enough that his solution would tell only me, even though he was still the chairman of the OÚP at the first meeting.

The solution was, that none of us was there and that people should solve it directly. I agreed it, I said that people do not trust their superiors through the company, because there is a terrible atmosphere from their side, but I let it go for now. But I asked three colleagues from that department if they would be willing to say this manager how terrible it was. One did not respond me, one said that nothing would change anyway and one accept it. Then we arrived at the monthly shop meeting of the unions with this manager and he didn’t know how to face it and what to say. Basically, he refused responsibility for his subordinate. At the end, we almost dictated to him, that it would be nice, if the GL would face to the issue as a man and put the record straight. Whatever else would matter, the most important thing about this is that other people know that they have to pay a little attention to what they say and how they behave.

Recently, I saw a situation, when the TM had an eighth palette in the process (we drive with a maximum of seven trucks). To be honest, I’m not quite sure if the exact procedure is anchored in the standard, but the general practice is that TM leaves the last palette at the start and pulls the yellow to alert TL to the abnormality. We can reconnect the pallets on B-lane, so we sometimes do it by leaving a pallet whose unloading takes the most time or is the hardest material or we help ourselves somehow. In this case, TL ran and launched on TM, that the last pallet was not the last one and that he purposely gave it to him in the middle and he should not “fuck him” (sorry about that, but it is a quotation). Immediately, I thought, on what basis did TL shift the B-lane pallet. The second thing that occurred to me was, what TL would do, if he took the pallet and carried it. It would probably help TM not so much physically as mentally.

Another case happened, when on the Final 3 gums that were put in the door frames passed through the agency quality control. I noticed a colleague on the line who fighting with each of them to take her out of the box. In practice, the supplier of the gum put them in the boxes one by one, so they could be good removed.

But the agency person took them out one by one, but then they whole package of OK parts throwback to the box. I reported it to our TL and his answer was to let her call to her TL on the line. My argument was that TM could hardly know on the line why something was suddenly changed on the gums, that they were going to be badly removed. Their TL would also have to search for a while. I knew it, so why not use the shortest way to our QC RI to alert the agency to this fact.

I think, that the line TL should be trained on material flow to the line to know which abnormalities are the fault of internal logistics, what are the fault of the suppliers, and so on. However, the abnormalities should not be forwarded. I also saw there for example in the form of glued kanban on a metal pallet on Chassis, when neither TM nor TL removed Kanban and the TL returned the abnormality on the TM logistics. It is not entirely fair, and it tells us about the competence of the TL as well.

OUR BEHAVIOR

Here I indirectly came to my way of working. It bothers me, how you behave to each other. Not only between shifts, not just between departments, not just between line and logistics, but even within one department. When somebody does not like me and is not honest enough to tell me it and instead of this he makes me troubles, it is a jerk. I never be so bad to makes him trouble as well, because I hate to be a jerk. Sometimes something goes wrong, but I’m definitely not doing things on purpose. And if I do, I do it just for fun, to laugh together (not to „laugh to someone“).

This whole thing in this big world has similarity in light and darkness. You will not make darkness by placing it in the room where it is lit. Vice versa, when it is dark, we can just light a candle and it is less dark. That’s how it is with all of us in life. When someone behaves like a jerk and I behave like that too, it will turn into something I will never want to be part of.

But what I am glad for a little, these are the individuals who understand this. It is also a few people on the line that I note, who have stacked empty boxes for me to easier pick up, or who know that empty boxes are not going somewhere, and paying attention when I charge them and those empty boxes sent to me. Thank you all. Human can be a punk or a hooligans, but it does not mean he is a jerk.

The concept of internal customer is also slowly becoming established in our countries. Of course, in the similar conservative companies it always takes a bit longer. Basically, it’s based on the fact that the customer must be satisfied. This is indisputable. Here it is important that „satisfied“ must be both external and internal. We all have an internal customer. At work, at home, on the roads. At work, it is always a person who follows on our part of the work and it also applies to details. Logistic man and lineman are internal customers with each other – the logistic man puts material for the lineman and takes empty boxes from him. We are all internal customers of our superiors. You’ll think a lot. Everybody is an internal customer and we each have an internal customer. If we want to be happy, we mustn’t be stupid.

MY MOTIVATION

There are several motivations for changing jobs. I usually have no problem with the fact that there are problems somewhere. They’re everywhere. I have a big problem when someone tells me what and how it works and in reality it is completely different or even vice versa. Toyota way is a pretty smart idea. But here is the problem that if someone should to operate at a certain level, he needs either experience or assumptions. Training can help with this, but it can’t be built on trainings without the ability of putting things into context and understanding, what precedes and what follows.

In the same manner, you can’t build the whole thing on A3 reports. The A3 report can be “bent” in several ways. Data can be given in proportional or average, as value or as percentage, etc.

If somebody at the store will give you 20% discount from 453, – CZK, it will be nice (90, – CZK), if you get 2% discount from item which cost 453.000, – CZK, it is not too much. It will be better if you discount 9,000 CZK (less than 2%). When somebody will discount you 230, – and yet CZK from 4.220, – CZK, it is not much, but if you pay 3.990, – CZK, it is not bad and you are happy although it is the same amount. It is just a psychology of business.

As well, the A3 report can be made to look good for the top and after little change it can be made to be good for the downward. When I compare a certain value with the average TM1-TM3 salary, assuming I have a TM1-TM3 exactly to just one-third, this comparison will be unacceptable for a third. It will be acceptable for part of the next third because the average will be slightly higher than the TM2 salary and a third will be satisfied without any conditions. I assume that the difference between TM1 and TM2 is less than the difference between TM2 and TM3.

Short-term savings as a process reductions or people’s reduction, are easy to present. No one can  connect it to the fact that now the “holes” are fixed by workers from Ukraine and others and the unfulfilled plan of produce by by non-payment, by granting overtime for each non-produced piece and, inter alia, by moved Saturdays. I say the line can go faster and many of us remember it. But it would require a stable, reliable staff … but this we reduced to show savings and praise ourselves.

I also remember the decision when people, after canceling shortly-used going, were dismissed with no considering of knowledge and skills just on the basis of the contract’s duration. For the function of any company it is important the fact that a herd is just as fast as its slowest individual. And I have been watching for a long time how abusive people leave the company, who elsewhere earn a little less, but with good conditions and without bullying with the jerk with the primary school. The company has produced a huge number of people who have exceeded their real maximum. They stay and they let anything like for money. Then there are people who don’t care. These are actually the slower part of the herd.

It seems that nobody worried about the leaving. The “fake” activities like various questionnaires and meetings and chatting do not mean that anyone is interested. In addition, we have so many leading levels (TL, GL, SV, MNG, GM, etc.) that the information screen between each level prevents information from getting to the right place. If the president would talk to the TM delegate from each department, he would probably be surprised.

In addition, every novice means risk (safety, changes, spilled material …). This is not how the team is building up and this is not the company that a few years ago claimed that the employees are the most important.

I’ve already experienced a lot in the work. Maybe it doesn’t look like that, but I could tell you a lot. Anyway, I say I haven’t seen more splitted administration from production as here. Here are the fakes things happen in the form of activities and reports, hiding the true mood and opinions of those „down“. The exemplary case was the planting of trees as the two worlds met at the gate – a shift B going from Saturday shift and a smiling office blind man going to save the planet.

The company sometimes tries to throw something at the unions. My opinion is that trade unions do not have decision-making power. There is management in the decision-making. The unions are basically just a control institute for checking that things not happen contrary the law, but because of the weakness of our legislation, we try to keep management’s behavior in humanity and common sense. Saturday is again a good example. The guys from OÚP told me they were taking on, that they believed the company that so many Saturdays would never be needed. The number was formally stated. They bet on the honor of the individual or team who was in charge of it. But this active unit was revealed and showed how we could trusted it. This, my friends, is not the union’s fault. For trade unions, it’s the experience what kind of person we have in management. Who actually decides about our life. See the picture (Kalendář.jpg) in the middle of this year, where all the weekends that didn’t start Friday are black. But it started last year. It is not just about our weekend dads, but also about people with interests going through festivals, moto rallies, and trips with children. And it’s not just about Saturdays.

I don´t hide, that I have look for a new job since September. But after the March communications, something broke in me, and in a few hours I made up two backup plans if I couldn’t get anything in two months and decided within a few hours to go into risk. The message that there will be another Saturday and certainly one more, and the information that no one will deal with heat in the assembly, it means we will again fall on the mouth … it was enough. And do you know what’s the saddest thing about it? That our decision is not caused by our leaders. It was cased your indifference, that it seemed you would like to enjoy it again. Already here above I am describing the access of many of you and the experience of similar stamping unwillingness to work, reluctance to do anything for change, I have done a lot in about a year of my representation. It is the life that when you want something, you have to do something for it. It used to be said in our home that bullshit wasn’t worth it and that was a great truth.

I have often heard that Škoda make this, Škoda makes that. So please, you can tell the next part of the truth that most employees are in the unions in Škoda.

At the moment, with obvious activities, someone in the company is trying to complicate the work of the unions and reduce their impact, instead of be appreciation that they have a communication channel that filters opinions about the non-saying and shortens the information flow from TM or TL directly to GM. So if you hope that something will change during the next collective bargaining, now it is up to you. Start talking, defend yourself, show your mood, don’t worry about it, strength the union’s influence by strengthening the base. There is plenty to choose from and just be interested. And if you expect a big change after the PSA leaves without any change in management, then you wait in vain. Open your eyes and think about what might change and try to answer why it should change. Do you understand it?

The best time to change is now, but it won’t be right now and it’s up to you. I’m a weekend dad and I need my energy for my daughter now when I can give her something of myself. At her age the time flies so fast that she doesn’t even wonder when the time comes when we both parents be embarrassed for her. Then she will come back, but she will never need me as much as she does now. I do not want to be at work on Saturday, I do not want to be out of order on Saturday afternoons. In addition, I can speak 3 languages except the Czech language and I am not stupid. I want to use it at work. Unfortunately, I have lost faith in the idea of this company.

Good luck to all of you.

Marek Jón