Worker disagreement? Be wary of unlawful restraint
Tools and personal items were disappearing and Maintenance Foreman Clint Dexter wanted to know why. "Do you have any suspects?" his boss, Plant Engineer Ed Morrow, asked. "No real suspects," Dexter replied.
Tools and personal items were disappearing and Maintenance Foreman Clint Dexter wanted to know why.
"Do you have any suspects?" his boss, Plant Engineer Ed Morrow, asked.
"No real suspects," Dexter replied. "At least no one I can point to with any kind of evidence to back me up."
"What makes you think the thief is someone in the maintenance department?"
Dexter hesitated. "Instinct, I guess."
It was a tad more than instinct. Opportunity, for one thing, circumstances for another. The foreman also had a couple of suspects in mind: Al Polk, for one; Vince Wilkens, for another.
Morrow suggested, "Why don't you question each employee individually? Use the small conference room where you can talk in privacy."
"Good idea," Dexter agreed.
Al Polk was the sixth person on his list. He appeared nervous as he sat down opposite his boss at the desk. When Dexter informed him what the interview was about, Polk flew off the handle.
"No way I'm listening to this crap."
Polk stood up to leave. Dexter rose quickly and pushed him back into the chair, not roughly, but forcefully enough to seat him. "You're gonna hear me out, Buster."
"That does it!" Polk shouted and, threatening to sue for unlawful restraint, he stormed out of the room.
Question : If Polk follows through on his threat, does he have a case?
Morrow's opinion: Dexter's report of the incident produced a frown on Morrow's face. "You made a mistake trying to force Polk to remain. What you should have done was warn him that if he left he would be guilty of insubordination and would have to suffer the consequences. Send Polk to my office. I'll see what I can do to smooth over this thing."
- Events & Awards
- Magazine Archives
- Oil & Gas Engineering
- Salary Survey
- Digital Reports
Annual Salary Survey
Before the calendar turned, 2016 already had the makings of a pivotal year for manufacturing, and for the world.
There were the big events for the year, including the United States as Partner Country at Hannover Messe in April and the 2016 International Manufacturing Technology Show in Chicago in September. There's also the matter of the U.S. presidential elections in November, which promise to shape policy in manufacturing for years to come.
But the year started with global economic turmoil, as a slowdown in Chinese manufacturing triggered a worldwide stock hiccup that sent values plummeting. The continued plunge in world oil prices has resulted in a slowdown in exploration and, by extension, the manufacture of exploration equipment.
Read more: 2015 Salary Survey