United Parcel Service
It Could Happen...

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By DaBusDrivr
November 23, 2001

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A short story about what can happen to UPS employees, the company itself, and also the shareholders, if we don't take "Care" of the business and the people who keep us in business, "Our customers."

Many, many years ago, before hiring on with UPS, I had a job working for a local dairy. I was a route salesman, and proud of it. I was a rookie working with many old timers who had 20, 25, and 30 years or more at the dairy. I busted my butt to continually get new customers to replace the ones that quit or went to a competitor. My salary was based on a small base pay and the commission I earned for selling our products, so my goal was to sell whatever I could. I was proud of the company I worked for, the job they provided me, and the financial security the job provided my family.

Unfortunately not many of the other employees felt the way I did. Many would laugh every time a customer quit saying, "Thank goodness Mrs. so and so finally quit, what a pain she was always wanting extra products that I didn't always carry." Maybe it was the fact those employees had gotten older, had lost the pride in their jobs, or just didn't care any more. As much as I tried, I couldn't convince many of the old-times that if customers keep leaving, the business won't be around very long.

About a year later, things changed dramatically. The company called a Saturday meeting to inform everyone they were filing for bankruptcy. They said the competition had taken 50% of their business, and they could no longer continue losing money, and were closing down the operation. Almost every one of the "old-timers" went into a rage and said "you can't do that", how will we support our families? I just sat there motionless trying to get over the shock of seeing my job disappear. I was also in shock listening to these "Old-timers" who never gave a damn about the company before, about losing customers; now finally show the concern for the company and their jobs that had been missing for many years. Unfortunately it was to late, the damage had been done. Many of my fellow workers retired, but on a very small pension due to the company's bankruptcy. Some found other jobs, but with much lower pay. Some struggled to find any job. I was fortunate since I was still young, and I hired on with UPS. The efforts and dedication I once gave to the dairy, I then gave to UPS, and in return UPS gave me 27 wonderful years and the opportunity to retire at 55.

This story really isn't about me; it's about all employees, and the dedication they need to help in their company's success. Every time I hear about employees "Not caring" about the business or the customer, it reminds me of my days at the dairy and that one "Saturday morning meeting" when our company closed the doors for good. If you think UPS is too big to have something like this happen, think again.



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