|experience:||McDonald's 2nd Asst Manager, Colchester & Ipswich, 1986 - 1987|
The witness believes a 'them and us' attitude was fostered between crew and managers. Any relationships forged during the on-the-floor parts of a managers training were expected to be forgotten in favour of an authoritian approach. The witness believes there was very much a hidden agenda of exploitation of crew members wherever possible by all levels of management.
second assistant manager at McDonalds from 1986 to 1987
Full cv: (not available for this witness)
The following points represent situations which I was either directly involved in or witnessed at close hand, and although they happened mainly in the store where I spent most of my waking time, I have no reason to believe that they did not happen in other stores as to a large extent they are the product of the attitude of more senior managers.
In slack periods, the tendency was to 'ask' people if they wanted to go home. Sometimes people were instructed to go home. This was quite common.
Managers were encouraged to keep employees ignorant of their entitlement to overtime payments if more than 39 hours were worked, and in practise crew scheduling was done so that very few worked over 39 hours. This was in spite of complaints from full-time workers that their scheduled hours were too few (Ipswich store). In effect you acted as a wage-broker who could offer more hours to the crew member who were most compliant and accepting. Consequently a group of 'favourites' could emerge.
Discretionary bonuses were often awarded or approved by the store manager to the more obliging members, whilst the less-obliging were not awarded them. This was probably designed to create compliance (Ipswich store).
Crew members would often work an entire shift without a break (usually on Saturdays) and were sometimes allowed to leave early, but this was often not by choice; breaks were denied because of customer volume. Alternatively they might be allowed to take their break near the end of their shift, in spite of requesting it earlier. Sometimes they would be made to take it shortly after coming on a shift. It was ALWAYS at the manager's discretion.
The emptying of the shortening in the frying vats was not strictly supervised and was often done by crew members with little formal training. The minimum number of crew on the 'open' (early) shift meant supervision was not possible. Safety equipment was provided in the form of protective clothing, but this was not always worn in its entirety.
I was ill with a viral infection shortly after starting at Ipswich and had a few weeks off work. I sent in relevant doctors notes but because two, I believe, were delayed in the post and my illness was not believed by senior management my salary was suspended at one stage, causing me problems.
In general, a 'them and us' attitude was fostered between crew and managers. Any relationships forged during the on-the-floor parts of a managers training were expected to be forgotten in favour of an authoritian approach. I believe there was very much a hidden agenda of exploitation of crew members wherever possible by all levels of management.
Example: Ring up 2x Big Mac, 2x reg. fries, 2x reg. McD cola giving total - take customer's money, give change, then items were cancelled from the till as apparent mistakes and the money taken would therefore show up as a cash surplus on that till.
This was always done by managers, operating various tills throughout a shift depending on how much money needed to be 'made'. Various tills would be used so that one massive surplus did not appear in one till. This system was used at Ipswich, although I believe other 'systems' (ie employee meals facitlity) could also be used and indeed were at other stores.
If anything else occurs to me I will send further details - no doubt further examples of bad practise have simply been forgotten by myself and others.
People understood that the only way to get on was to co-operate. They knew that if they refused they may not get the hours or shifts they wanted the next week. People would be put on the lobby if they didn't co-operate. I also witnessed occasions when people were told to go home because they were untidily dressed. This only ever happened when the store was quiet.
|date signed:||July 22, 1993|
|status:||Appeared in court|
exhibits: Not applicable/ available
transcripts of court appearances: