OK, so, I just got off four days of working 10 and 11 hour shifts, including the last couple where the temperature has been around 100...on our busiest days. Lemme tell you, rushing around, trying to make it all happen in that kind of heat is not pleasant. So, there's a baseline for you.
Jiffy Lube does an internal competition/evaluation each year, uncreatively called J-Team All-Stars. For us, this means all three district managers for the Tidewater area and their boss showing up at each shop and grading us, everything from the way the shop in maintained to how we work to how fast and accurate we are. Why they chose to do this in June is beyond me. All this past week, we've been really knocking out anything and everything we can to make the shop look perfect, fix small things, etc. Friday, they were coming.
First word was that they'd be there between 9:30 and 10 am. Good, get it done and over with, as everyone was twitchy. This got pushed back and pushed back until they said to go ahead and send some of us on lunch break, as they were behind and getting food. OK, I went to lunch and came back to the shop under heavy load. Middle of the day, heat baking us, 10 cars in 2 hours (this doesn't sound like a lot, but for a single team, it's actually pretty well rolling along). just as we finish that, before anyone else has a chance to break or even cool off, they finally show. It's 3pm, we're all beat, and NOW we have to actually perform. Oh, dear...
They evaluated us on a car, but then decided to scrap that one due to some unfair difficulties (canister filters take longer, etc.). A second one was chosen, and while we did good, there were still some irregularities, so they opted to give us one more. problem was, by this time, we're all falling apart from the heat. We haven't had a chance to pause, rehydrate, anything. In the end, they pulled in one of their own, and we jumped on it...only to have the heat and exhaustion make it slow. We were demoralized, frustrated, and emotional...and fucking HOT.
In the end, though, we pulled 95 out of 100, an improvement over last year (and in this heat, mind you!), and were now 2nd in the entire region. I understand that we held that 2nd place spot in the end, which we were frankly impressed and pleased by. I overheard that they saw our emotional response as meaning we were truly invested in all this, and they liked that, too. I couldn't say whether we were really emotional for that reason, but not gonna correct it to them. Also, there should be improvements coming. With the District Leader there, we managed to point out a couple things we needed that our District Manager (of whom I'm no fan) has ignored...like some decent fans. He's making that happen. It was a very long, hot day, but not bad in the end.
That night, storms hit. While we got off easy with a few hours of overnight power outage, plenty of people in the area were without power into the morning, trees and branches were down, etc. Crazy.
Yesterday, same heat, same level of busy, less level of energy. Luckily, it didn't matter as much. Store Manager bought us all lunch to express his happiness with our accomplishments (and because the District Manager (of whom I'm no fan) was going to, but didn't). Middle of the day, we ran out of a particular filter and I had to make a mad dash to the auto parts store and buy one for a car we were servicing, but apart from that, they day was just hot and long.
More storms expected today. I'm not working today, however, so I don't much care. ;) just hope we keep the power, as A/C is kind of a necessity right now. By the way, every time I look at the weather map and see that the US is one big red heat zone except for the West Coast, it makes me miss Portland that much more. Screw you guys and your lack of heat death.
Speaking of working hard, this week I start really hardcore trying to learn all I need to be a manager. Still hard to believe that they already want me to move up like that, but it's a good feeling, and I'm still planning to try and use that to get back to the West Coast at some point. Speaking of the West Coast, if things go according to plan, I'll talk to the movers on Tuesday and try to set up times to have them get my shit out of madeofmeat's storage and over to me. That'd be keen for all involved.
Jessica has been sick again, possibly bronchitis (which is going around), possibly just seasonal crap. Either way, she's felt very rough for a couple weeks. Probably gonna take her to the doctor on Tuesday and hope for the best. Lemme tell you, with the long hours and tough days I've been working, she's really shown me just how much she cares and just how good of care she can take of me. Even in her feeling bad, she makes me dinner, caters to me, and makes me feel better. The girl is amazing.
OK, off to get some breakfast and get the Friday Pix done.