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Frustrated Olive Garden Manager Goes A Step Too Far

An Overland Park, Kansas manager for Olive Garden sent a stern message to her staff that caused a strong reaction. In her message, the manager complained employees were not coming into work at a "staggering rate," and that they should look for another job if they were going to continue not to come in. She said, "We are no longer tolerating ANY excuse for calling off [of work]. If you're sick, you need to come prove it to us. If your dog died, you need to bring him in and prove it to us. If it's a ‘family emergency’ and you can't say, too bad." The manager told employees they would lose their jobs if they missed more than one day in a month. The manager said she had never missed an unscheduled day in eleven and a half years, even when she got into a serious car wreck on the way to work. The manager concluded her message by sharing her belief that management makes it as easy they can for the staff. She expressed her wish for more employees like the ones that come in every day on time and work hard.

Not long after sending out this message, the company terminated the manager. An Oliver Garden representative told journalists that the manager's message did not align with the company's values: "We strive to provide a caring and respectful work environment for our team members. We can confirm we have parted ways with this manager." Unsurprisingly, the manager's message went viral, and the general reaction was not positive. According to The Guardian, the McKinsey company estimates that approximately 40% of U.S. employees are ready to leave their jobs, and employees feel less inclined to tolerate abusive bosses with new opportunities opening post-pandemic.