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9:49 am - Sat 5.24.2008
Arrivederci ArcLight

Arrivederci ArcLight

I quit my job yesterday.

What happened to make me do such a thing, you ask?

Well, when the schedule came out this week, I was on for six days, for the third week running.

I'd spoken to a manager about this the previous week, who said he would "pass it on" to the "scheduling team" (That manager, by the way, was very honest with me about how uncomfortable he was with some of the recent policy shifts at ArcLight - and as a former actor himself, expressed a great deal of empathy with my situation - which was interesting. I'm always caught off guard when an ArcLight manager actually acts like a person and not a corporate automaton).

Anyway, on Thursday, after having lunch with John O., I stopped at the theater, to post my hours in the break-room, same as I'd done last week (The idea being that at least a shift or two might get taken, and I'd have "cover" - as in "Well I tried to get someone to cover my shift..." - if I wanted/needed to call out at some point).

I saw Virginia in the lobby - Virginia is one of the managers who actually works on the schedule (And often makes a hash of it, I might add), and said, "You have me working six days a week. And I don't want to work six days a week".

Her response? "Blah blah blah...we don't want that either...blah blah blah...'needs of the business'...blah blah blah...who cares what you want, anyway?", etc.

I actually said, "Not to say 'I told you so', but I told you so"; in my own little meeting leading up to the new availability bullshit (They had meetings with the crew, about twenty or so at a time, laying down the new law), I said, "You're going to lose good people over this policy, you won't be able to retain new people, if you make them adhere to a schedule that won't work for them, and the quality of guest service is going to go down the tubes" (And I wasn't alone - in pretty much every little meeting, there was a "Jim Equivalent" saying those very same things).

But they knew better. They were going to do what they were going to do, and the hell with what we thought. And if we didn't like it, we knew where the door was.

And so it came to pass - I was having to work six days a week because, just like I predicted, good people were leaving, new people weren't staying, and they can't keep enough crew around to actually do the job (Which is, theoretically, to provide an experience you're not going to get at an AMC or what-have-you).

So not only do I not get a schedule that allows me to plan my life, I don't even get a schedule that includes two days off a week.

So I don't know if it was brave, foolish, impulsive, self-destructive, life-affirming, assertive, or what (All those options have crossed my mind in the past less-than-24-hours), but I have found the exit, walked through, and am left wondering...

"What now?"


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