New Workplace Rules Have Whole Foods Employees ‘Crying’ and ‘Having Nightmares’

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Work is hard – even at Whole Foods. But when you have a generation of millennials that have been given a trophy for every effort, no matter how small, you aren’t going to have a workforce that appreciates hard work.

Millennials are shaping up to be a generation that doesn’t know how to push themselves or to have the need to impress others. They are, with some rare exceptions, a generation that can’t fathom being pushed out of their comfort zone.

Some companies probably attract these snowflakes more than others. I would assume liberal companies mostly attract liberal employees. However, that doesn’t mean the liberal companies don’t expect the employees to get the job done. They do need to make money after all.

Apparently the stress of working for Whole Foods has employees needing extra yoga time and more almond milk in their sippy cups.

H/T Fox News

Employees at Whole Foods Market say the company’s new policies have thrown their workday into chaos, with one supervisor saying it’s not uncommon to see stressed-out employees crying on the job.

Workers for the Austin-based supermarket chain tell Business Insider that the store’s new “order-to-shelf” inventory system has been taking a toll on the staff since the guidelines were implemented last year.

“I wake up in the middle of the night from nightmares about maps and inventory,” said one Whole Foods employee who spoke with Business Insider. “The stress has created such a tense working environment. Seeing someone cry at work is becoming normal.”

Under the new procedure, store managers and employees are instructed to display the store’s inventory mostly on its shelves, rather than hold a larger inventory in a back room and constantly restock — a practice that leads to stores “constantly running out of products,” according to one employee.

This order-to-shelf system, or OTS, is also the same system that was recently blamed for the empty shelves spotted at Whole Foods locations across the country, but employees have claimed that the “militaristic” inventory system prevented them from doing much to correct the problem.

Making matters worse are the new “scorecards” that managers are expected to grade their employees with. According to Business Insider, these scorecards record how an employee stocked a certain shelf, or managed the storage area for their department. Supervisors are also expected to quiz employees on the best-selling items or sales goals for that particular week, and deduct points for unsatisfactory results, if necessary.

“Every item in our department has a designated spot that is labeled or marked,” another employee told the publication. “If that item is even an inch outside of its designated spot … we receive negative marks.”

Any employee who scores below an 89.9 is possibly subject to termination, say workers.

And while lower-scoring employees have been terminated under the new “scorecard” system, an anonymous employee said store leaders and even one regional vice president have quit “because they consider OTS to be absurd.”

Other employees say they hope that Amazon, which recently acquired Whole Foods, will come to their rescue. (The implementation of Whole Foods’ OTS system predates Amazon’s acquisition of the company.) But as Gizmodo notes, Amazon’s own delivery drivers are working under “similar conditions” and struggling to finish their routes on time.

Now I don’t shop at Whole Foods and obviously don’t work there, but it seems to me that these employees need some lessons in stress, and perhaps time, management.

People of Facebook had no trouble responding to the Whole Foods employees.  Daniel Peters says “I am deployed to a combat zone. Please tell me more about the “militaristic” system you have to put up with.”

Then there is Rick O’Shea, who commented  “Yeah? I wake up from nightmares about dead and mangled friends in Iraq. I wake up from nightmares about teenagers dying in a car wreck while I held their hand and lied to them telling them they were going to be fine. I wake up from nightmares about pulling 4 pounds of slack out of a 5 pound trigger, on a guy who was legitimately reaching for his wallet. So you’ll excuse me if my tears don’t mingle with yours.”

Yes, workplace stress exists and it’s ok to complain from time to time. But I think perhaps these employees could be taught a lesson in perspective.

As my parents used to tell me when I would whine about my first job, “That’s why they call it work!” I would also remind the employees of the great thing about America, if you don’t like your job, quit and find one that you do!

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