Opinions Please....

Joined Aug 21, 2009
So my manager and I did a validation study and we discovered that the way the previous QA team had the paperwork set up pretty much forced the staff to fib about the cooling times. We saw that they were just trying to close things out and we fixed the paperwork to reflect the proper cooling times as laid out by the CFIA and retrained them all on it.

I was doing my weekly check of our gas flush meter and I noticed that the last reading on it was what I had recorded on my log so I mentioned it to my manager. We looked at the records and saw that in a two month span they had only used it three times and they used the packaging machine every day. We spoke with the production manager and his first instict was to get mad at us and we showed him that we were speaking the truth. The general manager wanted names of people and we said no... it is all of them and it is alot of the time the team who are doing the metal detection who fills in that section of the log so they are trusting that the people packaging are doing what they are supposed to.

I had already written a training session on record keeping and it was going to be the subject of this month's training with the staff so to drive the point home I put together a presentation about the Peanut Company of America and what happened to them when they falsified records. My plan is to be very detailed as to what they did wrong and how what they did relates to what I have seen in our paperwork. I want them to learn by example and to be comfortable bringing up concerns as opposed to me lecturing them for an hour on what they did wrong. At the end of the day my message is to be honest on the paperwork and if found to be less than honest they will be subject to disciplinary action up to and inculding termination of employment.

What I would like to know is... how would you react if you were in the manager's postition and we told you our findings and also if you were in our position what would you do and do you think we are being to soft on them?

All opinions and ideas are welcomed and appreciated...

Thanks in advance.
Joined Aug 21, 2004
When ever I come up against unacceptable situations, I strive to come from a place of finding solutions rather than from a place of attaching blame.

I am not interested in having anyone stand in the corner with a dunce hat on. I want to eliminate the need for that going forward by finding what will work so that the unacceptable will not happen again. Once was one too many times, but it can't be reversed, so I find it more valuable to move forward rather than ruminating on the past.

When solutions are found and implemented, I make sure that everyone understands my expectations going forward and what the consequences of not following protocol and standards will be.

From that point, I stand my ground, hold people responsible, and stay consistent and steadfast. I become very black and white. I make it very clear that their futures are in their hands, not mine.
Joined May 5, 2010
I've had this happen to me at a Marriott account I took over.
In this situation, inventory was taken every Friday (Yeah I know.....) and the prior food production manager had the staff doing the physical counting and all he did was the extensions.
They would falsify the numbers and inflate the inventory to make their department look good.
When I took over, I took inventory home with me and scrutinized each page.
I found stuff...a lot of stuff.
A 5 gallon pail of chicken stock is not $153.00.
I brought this and all the rest to the GM's attention.
But wait....it gets really good here.
Turns out the GM and the ex-production manager were, how shall I put this?, close friends....?
Now what?
District manager........
It took 3 months and the GM was gone.
You gotta be very careful who to trust and how many feathers to ruffle to get what needs to be done.
Joined Mar 1, 2017
Typically, when you encounter a particular aspect of your business where the employees chronically get it wrong, it usually means there is something inherently wrong with the process that either encourages the employees to not want to do it correctly or confuses them thus making it difficult to do it correctly. Its your job to figure out which. Sometimes, its a combination of both.

Additionally, once you've identified the problem, which seem to me includes the manager that became angry, its your responsibility to not only correct the method and provide the training material for the employees but, most importantly, to engage in positive reinforcement of their training. This is where the manager comes in.

Writing a protocol and giving a class or lecture once a month on the "how to's", "why's" "do's and dont's" isn't enough. That positive reinforcement has to be done at regular and frequent intervals with management included, until the understanding and execution of the procedure becomes second nature to all, including the manager. Once that has been achieved then, you can come up with a policy for dealing with violations, including a policy for dealing with managers who don't do their job.

The manager must understand they are responsible for ensuring this procedure is followed and that new hires are brought up to speed. If the manager, whom I assume is their direct supervisor, doesn't ensure that proper procedure is performed every time then, perhaps a new manager is in order?

Most importantly, its important to remember that at your level, managing staff isn't your job. That's the manager's job. Getting involved at the employee level usually creates more confusion rather than solves issues.

Good luck. :)
Joined Oct 10, 2005
Of course the production mngr got angry, at the end of the day it's his responsibility, and you just exposed his unsightly backside for all to see.

If you were to go over the production mngr's head and report your findings to HIS boss,... well, lets just say the working atmosphere would be downright unpleasant.

So, its 6 of one, and a half dozen of another. Or, taken from the '80's Stan Ridgeway album,* " its dog eat cat, cat eat mouse, mouse eat cheese, and the cheese just smells".

Hold your head up, you're doing what you're paid to do. You have your employer's best interest at heart, and you did everything by the book, including reporting your findings to your direct superior.

* "The big heat"
Joined Aug 21, 2009
Thank you all for your thoughts and I apprecaite all of your input... and I need to thank the admin of this site.. over the years I have come here for advice and I have always felt respected so a huge thank you!
My plan for the training is to refresh them on the importance of record keeping and then have them write the test.. the test is the proof we need that they had the training and understood it and we will take it up togeher and then I will show them what happens when record keeping goes wrong
I am not after pointing finggers.. I want them to understand beyond a doubt the seruoisness of what our records mean and that they need to be honest and if management is making them lie they need to know that they can tell us witout retribution and we will take care of the issue.
On our hot kitchen side we have solid support but with the dough side they see us as a pain in the a$$. I need to clear my plate with paperwork as I was off last week and when I am done I am going in on the dough side and getting them on board with the paperwork and also observing engagement with the managers. That department is a mess and we need to fix it.. My manager and I talked about it today and I told her i knew it was a mess and needed my attention when I am back... I am going to put on my work pants and rubbers and go in and work on the floor with them so I can see their process. I was a line cook before I was a QA Tech so I am not afraid to get in there..

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