There is always that one coworker whose raise in salary, promotion, or successful assignment made them feel on top of the world. They might as well have expected others to know what floor button they should push for them on the elevator or for the door to be opened for them or for everyone surrounding their cubicle to bow down to them as they walk in.
Not a chance, big shot.
Employees who have had such a coworker took to Reddit to share the tale. These are stories of people whose tiny amount of power at work went straight to their heads.
Forty-Five Minutes As The Big Cheese
“Years ago, while working at a pizza place, our manager had to leave on a family emergency and left a girl in charge until one of the other shift runners could get there. He lived about 45 minutes away.
In that 45 minutes, the girl who was left in charge actually called one of her friends and hired her saying she was ‘the manager’ now. She also wrote me up for ‘putting too much cheese on a pizza’ and actually told one of the drivers he was fired because she ‘didn’t like his attitude.’ When the shift runner got there to take over, this girl also told him not to worry about it because she ‘had things under control.’
In the end, her friend was not hired, my ‘write-up’ for using too much cheese was torn up and the ‘fired’ driver (who never left the parking lot) kept his job. She quit a few days later because we were ‘unprofessional’ and the manager ‘played favorites.'”
Get Off The Bus!
“My public school bus driver when I was in middle school had quite the ego. We were not allowed to talk even at a murmur, turn our heads, read, or do homework. The ride was an hour each way. Any infractions, he would pull over and scream at us and, usually, give any kids involved a multiple days-long bus ban, along with whoever was just sitting next to them.
Since it was a rural, poor area far from the school, that punishment meant that a lot of kids just couldn’t go to school those days. Our bus was always late because he pulled over four of five times a day. He would make personal stops to his home, because, ‘Shut up, that’s why!’ He got complaints, but it only seemed to make his pull over time slightly shorter. He was on my route for two years before I found friends with cars and got rides instead.
The entire school system was a bottom of the barrel sort of place. Due to the ratio of kids to actual taxpayers, it is rumored to have been one of the lowest funded in the country, though I’ve never actually checked. There was a general attitude of ‘take what you can get.’
As far as I know, he’s still out there to this day, lording over 12-year-olds and regaling strangers with tales of manly strength. Twenty years later, he is still a hard contender for the biggest loser I have ever met. As bad as he was, though, we had teachers who were worse.”
King Of The Kitchen
“I worked as a busser in a hotel/restaurant in college. Everyone who worked there, aside from higher-up management, were college students. The restaurant manager had left the job and was replaced by a promoted server. Upon getting hired, the new manager actually said, ‘Well, there are going to be some changes around here.’
I have never seen a head grow so quickly, but he was also incredibly unprofessional. He walked around like a king in his castle, flirting with female servers and bossing around the male employees unnecessarily.
He threw an ice cube down the front of one of the rather busty new waitresses – a college girl. She flipped out, cried, and called her boyfriend. The boyfriend threatened to come in and beat the manager to a pulp. Everyone already hated him, so, as he walked around looking for support, everyone just shrugged and said, ‘Yeah, that’s tough, man.’ The story evolved over the course of the workday until I heard someone in catering say that he’d stabbed her in the chest with an ice pick.
I found him on the dock, shakily having a smoke at the end of the day, his eyes red from stress, his face pale with fear saying over and over again, ‘I just… I just don’t know what happened.’
He lasted less than a week, I think. Maybe three days.”
Calm Down Periscope
“I was a production assistant (the lowest of the low on a film set) for a Kelsey Grammer submarine comedy called Down Periscope. One guy was given the meaningless title of ‘Key PA’ and decided he was going to help wrangle background extras for this big exterior shot we were working on.
Everyone, including the extras, KNEW that the camera was probably framed in a medium close-up on the principal actors, who were doing a scene way down at the end of a dock. Nonetheless, Key PA Guy took it upon himself to start blocking out whole entire scenes of these background extras – CROWDS of people.
‘YOU GUYS OVER THERE! You’re families of the sailors who haven’t seen your husbands in six months and you RUN from the bus to the fence. BUT YOU GUYS are cadets who get in the way and YOU GUYS are arguing about which car has the right of way. Then, ALL YOU KIDS start clapping because you see a BIG DOGGY pulling his owner so fast he TRIPS OVER THE LEASH.’
It was like being the second unit on a Michael freaking Bay movie. He had these people doing his made up little scene over and over and over. He would yell at them, tell them they did it wrong, and reset them ‘back to one!’ to start over. It was madness. I walked by the guy and noticed this was going on.
‘You know the camera is pointed the other direction right?’ I asked him.
He just laughed and said, ‘I know.'”
Who Cares What Color Your Stapler Is?
“This is so stupid and it still makes me mad to this day.
My company ran a contest in which the winner got $100 – no strings attached. The winner could use the $100 bucks to get whatever they wanted. I won.
The thing I wanted most was new office supplies: a new pair of scissors, a new tape dispenser, stuff like that. I made a list of items and approached my coworker. She was in charge of our company supply ordering. If I went through her, I could get $120 bucks worth of office supplies for $100 even, down to the penny, including shipping.
‘No, I don’t like the colors,’ she said simply.
I thought she was joking. Her office supplies were covered in Minion stickers. I think anyone can comfortably rule out aesthetic appeal as a reasonable denial. Also, it was not her money and it was not for her desk. The rules of the contest said I could buy anything. There were no stipulations as to what color stapler I was ‘allowed’ to get. I assumed she told a joke and it just fell flat. A week later, I asked her what the status of my order was.
‘No, I’m not going to run that through,’ she said. ‘I think it’s tacky and I think it’s stupid that you won.’
I bet if I had ordered freaking Minion stuff, she would have approved it in a heartbeat. I wish this could have been a nice revenge story, but I just ended up using my money for groceries instead.”
Because We All Think “Dress For Success” When We Think of Blockbuster
“I worked at Blockbuster. One of the employees, named Melanie, and I didn’t really like each other but it wasn’t a blood feud. Then, she got a key holder promotion over me.
One day, the manager called me to sub in for someone who called in sick. It was my off day, I was at college, and I did not have my uniform. I told the manager this and she says she needed a body there to work the register.
‘Come in naked,’ she said, ‘just get here ASAP.’
I showed up in normal clothes. I had been working for about six hours when Melanie came in to rent something because it was her day off. She flipped the heck out. She went back to the office and to write me up for failing to comply to dress code and so on. She then tried and make me sign the write up then and there, all while she was off the clock. She did this for the next two hours until the store closed. No dice. I told her to take off. The manager came in the next morning to a total mess.
Melanie got written up for working off the clock. The manager told her that I acted on a direct order from her and that she needed to get off her freaking high horse.”
“She Made A Lot Of Enemies That Day”
“I used to work with a group of other interns in an office. For some reason that I still don’t understand, they decided to promote one of us over the others. The job was basically just to schedule who was doing what and when. That was it.
Only took two weeks passed before we found out that she was keeping detailed notes on all of our mistakes and taking them to upper management. They promptly told her to calm the heck down and decided to do away with the position.
She made a lot of enemies that day. She had ambitions of working at the company and was trying to make us all look bad. I think that one may have backfired on her.”
Never Argue With The Guy Who Signs Your Checks
“My dad opened up a chain of scrap yards that eventually ended up being wildly successful. My dad is also a person who has the life motto, ‘Never give your kids things because they will turn out to be entitled brats!’ Needless to say, me working at his most successful scrap yard did not lead to a high paying position or fast rising through the ranks. It was so bad that this manager named Ryan actually had to suggest to my dad that it was time to put me in management after four years of busting my butt harder than any other employee and even being the one to train him in a year prior. Pops didn’t trust me running companies at this point in time. In hindsight, it made sense.
I finally got a management position in which I had a small crew on second shift. It was three weeks before Christmas when I told my dad that I was looking to go balls to the wall on Christmas spending so I could finally feel like I was giving back to everyone who was important to me. I was a bit selfish prior to that point, I will admit.
I had picked out all the gifts I wanted to give my girlfriend at the time and the rest of the family, which rounded up to around $2,400 worth. I was about 21, so this was a big amount of money for me at that time and I was determined. Instead of being an entitled prick like most rich kids, I simply asked if I could work tons of extra hours so I could earn enough money to buy these gifts.
‘Well,’ Dad said, ‘you better get busting your butt and talk to the other branches and find out if you can get some overtime in because you’re gonna need that time and a half for a Christmas list like that.’
Over the next two weeks, I had worked a total of 160 hours, with 80 of them being overtime at multiple different shops which I drove all over to get to. I told everyone (including this Ryan dude) how ecstatic I was to have made enough to get everyone everything they wanted and enough left over to treat myself. Everyone congratulated me on the work ethic. It finally came time for me to go and collect my money.
Two days before Christmas was payday. I headed to the main office to turn in my hours sheet. The secretary told me she needed to make sure it was okay with Ryan before she paid me. I was a little confused as to why she needed to do that as it had never been common practice before. She brought my punch card to him and he came back over to the office.
‘I’m not paying you this,’ said Ryan whom, mind you, my dad had just given a $68,000 truck he had just bought but didn’t like anymore with barely any miles on it.
I, of course, asked what the heck he was talking about. He responded by telling me he was not going to pay me that because it was more than he made, so there was no way he was going to authorize me to cash it out. I was absolutely dumbfounded, but figured, maybe, there was some confusion or something.
To clear the air, I explained to him that my dad and everyone else at multiple shops OK’d me to work those hours and they could all verify that I did, in fact, work every minute that I said I did. I BUSTED MY BUTT for that check. I could barely function from the exhaustion. He then explained to me that even if my dad (the freaking owner who hired him) OK’d it, he was not cool with it and the most he would pay me was the hourly wage with no overtime because, otherwise, I would make too much.
At that point, my blood was boiling. We all hate the guy who pulls ranks or acts entitled, but I had no choice. This guy was a straight entitled, power hungry, money grubbing, unappreciative JERK. I informed him without raising my voice or acting irrationally that when the guy who signs his checks tells him to pay someone, he probably shouldn’t argue. He told me that he did not give a hoot. It was not going to fly. I let him know that I was going to call my dad on the spot if he did not pay me and he could work it out with him, but not until I told my dad every word of the conversation. He told me he did not give a snot and my dad didn’t have a say. I chuckled. I called to inform my dad about everything.
‘PUT RYAN ON THE PHONE,’ he hollered, very loudly, after calling him quite a few names that were less than professional. One would have sworn he was on speaker phone, but he wasn’t.
I handed the phone to Ryan. To this day, I’m not quite sure what my dad said to him, but I have never seen a guy so red. He walked back into the office, pulled out my $3,500 in cash, and never really spoke to me again after that. Freaking entitled prick. And to think, the whole time, he knew that most of this money was for other people in the Christmas spirit and I had worked harder than anyone else to earn it.
Oh, I’m sorry your 40-hour work week doesn’t make as much as me doubling your work hours, you poor miserable thing. Should I go fetch your brand new Chevy Silverado 2500 HD loaded plow truck that you didn’t spend a dime on for you?
That was the worst I had ever seen someone let power get to their head. EVER.”
Never Scream At A Pregnant Woman
“Back when I was pregnant, the only other girl I was waitressing with at the time was going to be made a manager. But she had not been made manager yet on the day I had a contraction at work and sat down a minute. She flipped out.
She screamed in front of our patrons that she was my supervisor, that she was better than me, and if I didn’t like it I could freaking leave. I clocked out and quit on the spot.”
The Worst Employee At Best Buy
“I used to work at Best Buy. We had an uplifting, good-for-nothing, super nasty woman whose equally super nasty sister also worked at the store. She wielded next level ‘witch’ powers and also knew how to manipulate upper management. She was basically impervious to getting fired, as was her sister.
She started out in operations, which is the registers and customer service. She was super slow at her job and messed stuff up all the time. I had to constantly cover for her mistakes. Fixing her issues and pretending they never happened was far easier and better for my mental health than explaining to management why their perfect angel cost the store $80 because she returned something as new that was actually defective.
Eventually, the entire department turned on her. She decided to move out to the sales floor to avoid the awkward moments with her coworkers. She totally sucked on the floor. She misquoted prices and told customers that she could ‘work a deal,’ letting customers expect better pricing on a TV, which was something we simply did not do. She would manipulate everyone by saying sweet nothings such as, ‘If you get a credit card, I’ll get my manager to knock $100 off this $800 TV.’
Naturally, she would get credit apps, which upper management loved because those were, literally, the only numbers they cared about. However, store metrics showed huge numbers in erosion due to all the price adjustments. Eventually, it caught up to her and she was forced off the sales floor.
At the time, Geek Squad needed a drone to prep computers for the holiday season that had bloatware removed and antivirus installed. They moved her there. She was technically a Geek Squad agent. At the same time, a management position opened up, which she felt was entitled to her because of all the departments she worked in. A manager tried to let her down easily by saying, ‘I can’t consider you a manager because you don’t have experience.’
This literally translated, in her brain, as, ‘It’s yours if you can show me your managerial skills. So, pretend to be a manager and let’s see what you got.’ So, quite literally, she didn’t have power but thought she did.
Since my area was next to Geek Squad, she started giving me daily performance reviews. She wrote up people and would put the forms in the office of our general manager, who she sucked up to a lot. Worse yet, she would tell people how to do their job, mine included, despite having been kicked out of it department because she sucked at it. One day, she donned the headset and pretended to the manager on duty while the manager took their headset off to deal with a personal matter. Everyone mocked her for it. Just before a new manager was expected to be picked, she had people fill out a petition for her. No one signed it.
This all went on over the course of a couple of weeks until the new manager was announced. That did not go well with this girl, even though the person who was picked was very obviously qualified for the job. Her sister threw a fit and yelled at the GM because her sister was promised the job. Her sister ended up quitting shortly after because she accused another employee of assaulting her.
This girl still worked there for a few years. I ended up transferring to Geek Squad and was a full agent. I technically ended up above her. She was still an imaging monkey.”
“He Enjoyed The Flavor Of Telling Someone What To Do”
“I work at a retail establishment. One guy started at the bottom of the totem pole with the rest of us. He is a gigantic nerd who totally owns it and we respect him for that. I actually really like him for the most part.
However, his nerdiness, organizational skills, and attention to detail got him promoted to assistant manager, alongside half a dozen other people. Overnight, he turned into Bill Lumbergh from Office Space. Suddenly, closing-time chores turned into, ‘Yeah, I’m going to have you two take out the trash and you clean the break room. When you’re done, come to see me if anyone wants to clock out ten minutes early.’
He is still the butt of a lot of our jokes, mostly to his face, but you can almost see him lick his lips and enjoy the flavor every time he gets to tell someone what to do.
Dude, you’re the least-senior manager of a team of eight people overseeing eight other people. The height of your power is to ask a 20-year-old to clean the break room and hope that they don’t just quit on the spot. Please keep doing what you’re doing, because it never stops being hilarious.“
Even In 10 Minutes, He Took “Being In Charge” Quite Seriously
“In college, I managed one of the university-owned convenience stores. I had to run to one of the stores across the street to grab some cups or something and jokingly told a worker that he was in charge while I was gone. I was gone for, maybe, 10 minutes.
When I came back, another worker was taking apart and deep cleaning the soda machine. I asked him what he was doing since we only did that at the end of every week. He said that the guy I ‘put in charge’ told him to do it. I didn’t know whether I should be mad he abused his power that quickly or proud of him for taking that initiative.”
No One Took Counting Inventory So Seriously
“I once worked part-time doing inventory. We would go to stores like the Bay and Whole Foods and, literally, count everything on the shelves with our fancy machines.
This one man was given ‘leadership’ of the home section. He wasn’t actually given any management power. He made the same amount as everyone else and all that. Literally all he was told was, ‘OK, you and these people are going to the home section. Divvy it up however you want.’
He went full power-trip mode, micro-managing how I counted towels, patrolling the aisles to watch us all, yelling unnecessarily. From that day on, he was known as King Tut.”
She Was The Gatekeeper Of Your Vacation
“As a part of her job, the girl who did payroll at my company also tracked vacation days. The company was small and family-owned. They really did not care how many days you took off. As long as your stuff got done or you could work extra hours or take stuff home, it was no big.
It was the freaking Spanish Inquisition with this girl, however. We even created a system of letting each other know (us lower people, that is) when we would be off using just colors and markings on the calendar. If it was written anywhere else, she would find it and be a psycho about tracking it. She even took two hours of my vacation time because I left early to go to the airport. I was salaried.
Yet, somehow, she went to Mexico for 10 days and never used any vacation time.”
Be Careful How You Use Your Power For Fun
“When I was 17, I was left in charge of the Panera I worked at for about an hour. Basically, I was just the one with the swipe card for if someone needed a manager override or a refund. There was not too much that could go wrong in an hour.
I was on a shift with all my friends, plus the one brand new lady – a very nervous, meek sort in her 40s who did not speak English very well. It was literally her first day and I had been training her.
As soon as the real manager left, I turned to my friends and said, ‘Alright, witches, you’re all fired!’
The new lady was standing behind me. She started crying and ripped her apron off. I had to chase after her and explain that it was a joke. I felt so bad.”