“I was a young intern, working the IT help desk for a quickly growing technology company. I was hired with a group of three others. Six months into the job, HR said that if the interns were working full-time they would be eligible for the company bonus system and we were having a very good year. You had to work for the company for at least ninety days to receive a bonus.
So six months in, we could get a bonus. The next week, a full-time position opened up, I applied, and was hired out of the internship program. I was still working the same role, just as a full-time employee. When the bonus payments went out, all my peers got one except for me.
I questioned HR. I was told I had only been a full-time employee for about three weeks at the time of bonus calculation and wasn’t eligible. We argued about previously being an intern and I explained that my intern peers all got the bonus.
The person in HR that calculated the bonuses said ‘Hmm, I’ll check into this for you but sometimes these things work themselves out.’
That was his response for the next seven weeks.
I patiently asked him about it each week, ‘Shawn, I’m just checking in to see what you were able to do about that bi-annual bonus I should have received.’
Shawn would reply, ‘Hmm, I’ll check into this for you but sometimes these things work themselves out.’
I got sick of hearing that response.
Shawn came into the office about an hour early every day.
The next day, I came about ninety minutes early, disabled his domain account, and told the new intern that I would take his spot answering calls on the help desk.
Of course, Shawn called in and I answered the phone politely but acting surprised that his account didn’t work.
He explained he received an error that his ‘account had been disabled.’
Of course, I told him, ‘Wow, that’s really strange. Hmm, I wonder what could be wrong? Hey, while I have you on the phone, were you ever able to sort out what happened with that bonus I should have received?’
The phone was silent long enough I wondered if Shawn was still there. I imagine his face turned red, while his fingernails dug into the finish on his nice wooden desk while looking down on us from the 8th floor.
He replied, ‘No, I haven’t gotten that taken care of yet.’
I said, ‘Well, I’ll check into this but sometimes these things work themselves out. Give me a bit of time and I’ll give you a call back.’
It was about thirty minutes later that Shawn called me back to say ‘Hey, I just wanted to let you know that I got that bonus thing taken care of. You’ll see it on your next check.’
I actually was surprised at how quickly he managed to get it resolved. I told him that I had meant to give him a call a few minutes earlier because I had found out what was wrong with his account and that it should be working.
Don’t mess with the IT guys.”