A company's 'no phone' rule takes a costly turn, causing substantial financial losses and leaving them with deep regret over the decision.
Different organizations have varying policies on smartphone use by employees during working hours. It largely comes down to the nature of the work they perform, which determines whether they are allowed to use phones in the workplace. Reddit user u/therandomuser84 had an interesting story to share about their company's policy regarding smartphones. The elaborate post, titled "Company doesn't allow me to have my phone, so I cost them 100K+," has gained an impressive 17.7K upvotes on the platform along with 518 comments.
The employee had worked in warehouses for many years, before which they were a contractor. They say, "Companies would hire us and bring in 20+ people for a few weeks when they desperately needed help." They were a "shift lead," which happened to be the topmost position and would need to communicate with their boss using the company phone. A specific warehouse they worked at had a rule that only managers could use their phones while working.
However, since they were not "technically" a manager, they could not use their phone. All other employees were asked to put their phones away in their cars or lockers. But the Reddit user kept their phone, as they needed it for work. On a certain day, the user happened to be on the phone with their boss when the said company's manager saw it and demanded that they hand over the phone. The team lead refused and the manager threatened to kick them out.
Not wanting to create a scene, they gathered all the employees and went outside. They even called up their boss and informed him about the problem. The boss immediately arrived at the place and spoke to the other company, letting them know that the team leader required a phone to work. However, the company continued to refuse because of their policy.
Their boss decided that the work could not be done without proper communication and stopped everything. The company then decided to cancel their contract and ended up paying "hundreds of thousands of dollars" despite not getting any work done. It was due to a clause in the contract that stated the company would have to pay if they sent the workers home earlier than the original end date. The user concluded the post by saying, "We all still got paid and got two weeks off before having to go somewhere else."
People on the platform commented on how much companies valued meaningless titles. u/soap_coals commented, "I used to work for a company that went the opposite way. In the call center, every agent had the title 'resolution manager.' Everyone else was a lead or a supervisor. So if you wanted to talk to a manager, you were talking to the employee with the least power in the company."
Another user, u/BranigansLaw, added, "I love stories where everyone wins. You and your team got two weeks off paid and their company didn't even have to suffer the indignity of non-managers using their phones in the warehouse." u/Furicist lauded the boss, saying, "Sounds like your boss has your back and you have his. Glad to hear it."