We have to change the way they think of the hourly employee.

Discussion in 'FedEx Discussions' started by hypo hanna, Mar 7, 2013.

  1. hypo hanna

    hypo hanna Well-Known Member

    I want a union as much as many here but I realize even if we get 90% of the drivers to sign cards, it could be 5 years or more before the IBT does anything. Until then our nightmare will continue unless we force them to change how they view us drivers.
    For too long they have abused us and since we have continued to give the customers good service and chipped in when the company needed extra help, they see no reason to treat us any different. It's up to us to change their view of us as doormats. We have to stop going the extra mile. Stop fixing things outside of our direct job responsibilities. Stop being cooperative when they are cutting our pay and benefits or writing us up for some trivial offense.
    For some of us this will be hard to do but it's something we must do if we want to see any changes. The only thing they care about is their profits. Bad customer service can eat into that profit. Bad customer service from all of us. Couriers, dispatchers and agents could cause enough disruption that they will have to take their hourlies seriously. On a large scale it could attract the attention of the investors or the national press.
    It's going to be painful. I still have a lot of friends who are customers, ops managers and dispatchers and they would all suffer from a general slowdown and drop in service but that can't be helped. We have to feed our families and pay our bills. Mgmt is not going to do the right thing by us as long as there is profit. We have to threaten that profit.
     
  2. vantexan

    vantexan Well-Known Member

    I agree with everything you are saying, but, if they are looking to trim the workforce and believe people are sandbagging them, expect them to fire some as an example to intimidate others. This isn't fearmongering, we don't have a union, so someone has to be willing to stick their neck out. And if you are fired for intentionally trying to hurt them they can fight your getting unemployment. So who's willing to step up and make enough noise to get the attention of others when they are let go? Who's willing to put their coworkers ahead of their family? Who's willing to take one for the team? I certainly hope we don't start another round of screaming and finger pointing with my post. I'm asking a legitimate question. The U.S. Revolutionary War had Crispus Attucks. Nathan Hale. The signers of the Declaration of Independence put their necks on the line. Whoever does it has to make a big enough stink to cause FedEx some embarrassing headlines. Who's willing?
     
  3. hypo hanna

    hypo hanna Well-Known Member

    It's a legitimate question. Deliberate sabotage will only get you fired. So will obvious sandbagging. It's been discussed in other threads here that there are plenty of ways of slowing down and screwing up that can't come back to haunt you. FedEx works because we do step up when there is a mechanical. We do go that extra mile to bail out the new untrained driver. We do exceed the speed limits and take risk to get that last 1030 off on time. Don't do those thing and the numbers drop.

    The last thing I want is for one of us to get fired. Just be smart about it and we get the job undone. If you are unsure if you can CYA, don't do it.
     
  4. MAKAVELI

    MAKAVELI Well-Known Member

    I agree but to that nationaly is not realistic. At this time I think it's about winning the small battles on a daily basis. I personally have slowed down a while ago. Come to realize, why the hell am I killing myself day after day when the company is not going to reward it? You really have to start thinking of yourselves and family first. Getting representation is the only way to change the major issues. The company will simply divide and conquer with out it. That has to be the focus to make serious changes. If we had 90% sign cards, it would not take 5 years. Trust me. If we even sniff 30 -40% the ibt will be on FedEx like white on rice.
     
  5. hypo hanna

    hypo hanna Well-Known Member

    I hope you are right about the IBT. And we should continue to push for a union

    Could we slow down nationally? I don't know. Is it worth a try, I believe it is.
     
  6. vantexan

    vantexan Well-Known Member

    If the IBT would support me while doing it I'd resign right now and travel to every FedEx station to hand out cards. I'd need at least a few years commitment from them or at least until a union is voted in, if less than a few years, a company car, an expense account to cover motels and food, gas, etc. Not looking for a big salary, just something basic with expenses covered. If they want to get the ball rolling, I'm willing. And the sad thing is nothing will come of this, but I'd work hard for it if given the chance.
     
  7. MAKAVELI

    MAKAVELI Well-Known Member

    Got to start somewhere. Remember best practices? I don't think it's in their vocabulary now. They know it slows us down. Try using them and go by the book. I know my route can't be done that way and get back in time. When they hit you up about your numbers just tell them you are using best practices and they can give you a check ride . Then watch them squirm.
     
  8. DontThrowPackages

    DontThrowPackages Well-Known Member

    I remember the mechanics, during their negotiations, sandbagging to the point we had late freight everyday. We have almost as much power as any division in the company. The key is which employee is willing to take the first bullllet for the team. I think most have the right ideal. Just do the bare minimum and let them know safety won't allow any more than that(which is very true if you analyze how the employees work).
     
  9. vantexan

    vantexan Well-Known Member

    The problem is we are just a handful here, the word has to get out nationally to slow down. FedEx's biggest weakness is the work is labor intensive and local, they can't ship the work to China. We can make a difference if enough are doing it, and there is safety in numbers.
     
  10. MAKAVELI

    MAKAVELI Well-Known Member

    I think this site can be the spark to a national action. As more and more drivers feel they have had enough of this treatment they will find this site and join the conversation. You know the tightening of the screws is going to get worse.
     
  11. MrFedEx

    MrFedEx Engorged Member

    Your key phrase was "Threaten the Profit". This is all that matters to them, and until we do cost them money, there is absolutely zero incentive for them to stop the abuse. Killing-off the customer base with poor service, and reducing productivity by slowing-down, are both easily accomplished without threatening your employment. The key is to be smart about it.

    I have always said that the easiest way to throw the operation into pure chaos is to simply follow all of their policies and procedures to the letter. Officially, you are supposed to follow the speed limit, take full breaks, not lift over 70# unassisted and on and on. There are literally hundreds of policies and procedures that you can faithfully follow and successfully make a huge difference by killing the numbers. And the greatest thing about it is that there is nothing they can do because you are following THEIR rules. This is why I say to document everything, either with a picture on your smartphone, or a journal with the details that will show that you are simply doing it "by the book".

    Three simple words, "Threaten the Profit".
     
  12. Route 66

    Route 66 Flacid Member

    true, but they found a way around that.....and called it Ground.
     
  13. vantexan

    vantexan Well-Known Member

    That's true too, but we're talking about what we deliver. It's all local, guy in Mumbai can't do it. FedEx is at the mercy of their workforce if we present a united front. One or two here or there isn't going to make a difference. And frankly there are too many who would run to management if they heard you suggesting a slowdown to your coworkers. Maybe someone should send anonymous messages to some show like the Today Show, warning that there's a national slowdown day occurring April 1st by FedEx couriers to protest company policies. Send hundreds of messages from multiple locations. Send it to all the morning news shows, evening news too.
     
  14. MrFedEx

    MrFedEx Engorged Member

    You're right, and a good idea to use the media to "out" what's going on. It would be great for the public to know how most of us really view the company...and Smith. Fred can partially outsource our jobs (Ground), but he needs us for the overnight part, and he always will. Express may not be his darling at the moment, but it's still the flagship of the opcos. He's still investing heavily in Express, just not it's people.
     
  15. DontThrowPackages

    DontThrowPackages Well-Known Member

    Public will show little empathy towards the cause. For one, people making 20,000 a year or less and the unemployed will think employees are crying about nothing. Second, the public is still willing to by blood diamonds and child labor produced products for a price. Employees are on their own so the only reprise is to do the bare minimum nothing more.
     
  16. Ricochet1a

    Ricochet1a New Member

    90%.... Hell, the IBT would be shocked as hell to get 10,000 signed cards in within the next few months (about 1/3rd of Express Couriers). If they got just that amount, they'd take notice and begin to try to get some of those who signed to start working as organizers to get the percentage pushed up to 50-55%. It is what I'm trying to get going here to no avail....

    Here is where you are playing with that proverbial 'fire'. All it takes is one customer to call the 1-800 number to complain, and you are looking at a minimum of an OLCC or potentially a Warning Letter (I've been there, I know EXACTLY what I'm speaking of). Even if you follow procedure to the "T", if the customer is unhappy with their 'Express Experience", YOU, the Courier will take heat.

    Customers pay big bucks to ship with Express, they want you, the 'face of Express' to be their little 'go to' package jockey, smiling, cooperative, doing whatever they want. The greater the volume they ship (the more revenue in Fred's pocket), the more they expect you to 'jump' when they clap their hands. Be very careful in deliberately trying to piss off customers. Express has paid a fortune to build its facade of reliable service provided by employees who really do care. If any single package jockey threatens to change that perception with a customer (God forbid a high volume customer), YOU will be made an example of and Express will pull no punches about it. DON'T kiss the customer's butt, but don't kick them in the butt either.

    This is where the issue of "who is your enemy and who is just a neutral bystander", comes in. Express management is your enemy - from Fred all the way down to the Sr. management level, and I'd even include most Ops managers too. The customers of Express are what keeps the business in operation and paying you what you get and potentially paying you even more if you act smart. Don't start pissing off customers, they are NOT your enemy. You need them a hell of a lot more than they need YOU working as a Courier.

    You are NOT going to get the customers to start feeling 'sorry for you' - won't happen, forget about it. They don't care about your personal finances, all they care about is their shipments and what they pay to get them where then need on time. The public at large doesn't care about your personal finances. The US Congress doesn't care about your personal finances.

    The ONLY people that you need to worry about caring about your situation as a Courier/RTD with Express are YOUR CO-WORKERS. They are the only ones that can help change the situation. Think about it, if you can't convince a coworker (who knows what is going on within Express just as well as you), to sign a rep card, how in the hell can you convince anyone else that you are being screwed? What good would it be to convince someone out there that you are being screwed? What can they do to change the situation?

    There is only one tool available to you. ORGANIZE. And you are going to have to do it from a grassroots level and more or less hand the IBT enough signed cards to convince them to petition for a vote. It is a very simple thing, sign the card, send it in. Talk to a coworker, they sign a card and send it in. Keep the ball rolling and keep getting your coworkers to sign and send in those seemingly insignificant cards.

    Fred fears those cards much more than ANYTHING you could possibly do on the job. His whole business model is set up to make it very difficult for his employees to successfully sign enough of those cards to force him to negotiate with an organized work force. Attack him with what he fears most - get rep cards out to as many people as possible and talk to as many of your co-workers as possible to get them signed and sent in. Fred will crap his pants should the IBT one day petition for a vote and the NLRB approves.
     
  17. Nolimitz

    Nolimitz Active Member

    What about enlisting the assistance of our "brothers" in brown. If every USP driver had a handful of cards to hand out while on the road to express folks, those signed cards could then be dropped in a UPS drop box, collected and turned into stewards at their stations. just a thought.
     
  18. hypo hanna

    hypo hanna Well-Known Member

    "To no avail"? Appears to me that most active posters on here are pro union and have either signed cards and/or contacted the IBT directly. Myself included. Being an organizer is more dangerous then participating in a slowdown IMO.


    slowdown or not the customer can, has and always will complain about anything he likes. Without proof, that olcc isnt worth the paper its written on. i have been around long enough to know how to do it without it ever coning back to me.

    You really should try and read through what I wrote before responding. What I am advocating is that we stop doing all of those extraordinary measures we do every day to save service. And consistantly told everyone to be careful how they go about it. Fedex Service is put in jeapordy mostly due to the screw ups of FedEx mgmt. im saying, don't save them.
    If enough hourlies do this, it could make a differance.

    Ah yes, the "you should be grateful for the scraps from Fred's table" Argument. Give me a break!
    A few :censored2: off customers and some negative press are just the thing to help upper mgmt realize their abuse of the front line employees may not be in their long term best interest.

    I really don't care about whether the general public thinks I'm getting screwed. Never did. And when did I say I want someone to "feel sorry" for me? what i do know is that negative press can affect whether someone wants to hand over Grandmas wedding dress to us or UPS.
    I know that investors seeing labor problems at a company will take that into consideration when deciding where they want to invest. Freddie wants to hit that 150 dollar a share price and he plans to do it on the backs of the hourly employee. I'd like to see him fail.

    .

    I never said dont work on organizing, but is not our only tool available.

    Fred hasn't feared those cards since RLA went into effect. He has it locked up tight and he knows it. From what I have seen, the IBT has made zero inroads in Washington to get it changed.
     
  19. overflowed

    overflowed Well-Known Member

    How can we get the cards ?
     
  20. overflowed

    overflowed Well-Known Member

    I asked the IBT but nada, no answer.