(I have an older coworker that is outgoing, friendly, and loved by customers, but she’s also extremely flighty. For instance, although she lives just down the street, she’ll come in 45 minutes to an hour before her shift starts, just walking around or sitting in our breakroom, which is four walls, a plastic table and our lockers. I’m not even sure if she clocks in. Then about halfway through her shift, she’ll ask if she can go home early, stating everything from her medication has worn off, her dogs need let out, or she’s just going crazy. We’ve tried to tell her she’d be less burned out if she just came in ten to fifteen minutes early like we’re supposed to, but she brushes it off, saying she wasn’t doing anything at home anyway. Then, like clockwork, halfway through the shift, she says she just wants to go home. She changes her availability and desired hours almost weekly, and will then outraged to find herself scheduled according to her notes, because she’s already changed her mind and forgotten about the note.
Recently, she’s taken to declaring herself unfit for work and simply walking out. Not asking permission, not telling anyone, just taking out her cash drawer and leaving. I was working in customer service the first time it happened. She was scheduled til 9pm, which is still an hour before anyone else would get to leave, and dropped by customer service at roughly 8:15.
Coworker: Here’s [the petty cash box] and my drawer, I’m leaving. I don’t feel good, you know? I gotta get outta here.
Me: *takes the box and the drawer, thinking the night manager must have cleared it* Alright, have a good night.
(After two customers, I count down petty and find it the even $500 it’s supposed to be. I go to write my own log entry and see that she wrote her count time at 9:00, which is when petty is supposed to be counted and brought back to customer service. So I time my log entry by what my phone says, 8:27.)
Manager: *walks back to customer service* Uh, where’s [coworker]?
Me: … She left, I thought you cleared her to leave early.
Manager: I definitely did NOT. She was already SCHEDULED to leave early. What time did she come back here?
Me: Like 8:15, but she wrote that she counted petty at 9:00. I thought that was weird.
Manager: What the hell! That’s not cool! You can’t just WALK OUT!
(A few days later I was working a different department and chatting with the girl in customer service. It was just after 2:00 and everyone working the morning shift was scheduled til 3:30. The same coworker walked up with the petty box and her drawer.)
Coworker: Here you go, [coworker 2], I need to get outta here, I just hurt, you know?
Me: … Did you talk to [manager]?
Coworker: *surprised* No, should I?
Me: Yeah, he gets the final say on who stays and who goes home early, we can’t just up and leave.
Coworker: Oh yeah… I’m gonna go punch out first, then I’ll talk to him.
(Me and the customer service girl facepalm.)