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  • FIRST POST
    • Miss Heartilly
    • By Miss Heartilly 4th Jul 17, 6:07 PM
    • 36Posts
    • 9Thanks
    Miss Heartilly
    Possible return of unfriendly, bossy volunteer
    • #1
    • 4th Jul 17, 6:07 PM
    Possible return of unfriendly, bossy volunteer 4th Jul 17 at 6:07 PM
    I volunteer 3 days a week in a charity shop, in which I am responsible for now opening the shop, running the shop floor (As there is nobody else in who can use the till) cashing up, banking the takings at the end of the day and doing other stuff like put out clothes etc.. I have the help of one other volunteer who is great when he's not been very reliable lately so there is times when I am on my own some of the day, sometimes all day. Then there will be days when we are overstaffed as two other people may turn in. But as none of these can use the till, if I don't come in (if i'm ill etc..) we can't open up.

    Anyway, a month and half ago another volunteer (who has now sort of left.) let's call her Maureen decided to boss me around for no apparent reason. She came in unannounced one day, blanked my 'good morning' at the door and just glared at me instead (After having several weeks off volunteering beforehand) and basically told me (After i had already opened the shop and logged onto the till) to "get off the till and never touch it again" I had been doing this particular role for a few weeks and was asked by management to do so, as nobody knew if she was coming back or not as she refused to answer her phone for weeks on end.

    Anyway after standing up for myself by letting Maureen know I was going to continue doing what the manager had asked me to. She started having a go at me infront of other staff members saying I had messed up the till (I didn't. The till was fine) , including a delivery guy. (who later complained to the management on my behalf about Maureen having a bad attitude towards me) I ended up walking out, pretty upset and angry at the unprovoked incident and felt as if I was pushed from my role that I was doing pretty well.

    Anyhow, management had a word with her... Apparently, they know she can be bossy and just say that's how she is etc.. but it was more than that. She was being nasty and it was almost bully like behaviour. Just because I was doing her old role which she obviously wanted back.

    Since that day, she hasn't been back which was over a month ago. But management are apparently keeping her position open. God, knows why as not many of the other volunteers are upset that she's gone, and since she's been gone everyone has had more freedom to try new things with the shop ie window dressing, and sorting through the donations without her trying to control every aspect of it. Morale is much higher as we all muck in together nobody bossing anybody else around.

    My problem is I have heard rumours of her possible return and I am gutted to be honest. When she comes back the atmosphere is going to be unbearable, she will try bossing us all around again and will refuse to remove from behind the till to stop anybody else from using it. She'll try and take over and run it the old way, which is all her way. with nobody else having a say in anything... That's how controlling she is. I will lose all the responsibility I currently have, even though she let the shop down by being absent for a month and half and if it werent for me the shop would of lost alot of money as it wouldn't of opened up.

    I am unsure of what to do. As I really do enjoy this volunteer work and don't want her ruining mine or any other volunteers experience.
Page 3
    • theoretica
    • By theoretica 7th Jul 17, 7:16 PM
    • 4,772 Posts
    • 5,998 Thanks
    theoretica
    I did consider this also.

    Until I realised, strangely that the customers seem to like her. Or at least the regulars do. All the time she's been off at least 6 or 7 people per day will ask "How's Maureen? I hope she's coming back soon.' or 'Isn't Maureen a lovely lady, she's so kind the shop is lucky to have her."

    Urm, if only they knew the real Maureen.

    The nasty bully that I have to work with, maybe they'd soon change their tune.
    Originally posted by Miss Heartilly
    From the evidence as you tell it she could be giving customers discounts rather than pocketing any money herself.
    But a banker, engaged at enormous expense,
    Had the whole of their cash in his care.
    Lewis Carroll
    • Miss Heartilly
    • By Miss Heartilly 11th Jul 17, 6:51 PM
    • 36 Posts
    • 9 Thanks
    Miss Heartilly
    Perhaps, but either way the charity is losing money or at least it was when she was on the till.

    I dunno, not to sound 'assuming' but there's just something untrustworthy about her. Her attitude in general is terrible, she treats people horrendously. One volunteer I was working with today even said that if Maureen ever came back then she would leave as she can't be bothered with her nastiness. Another volunteer hasn't been in properly since he heard she was returning, as he said he doesn't fancy spending all day running around after her and carrying out her orders.

    I opened a locker today in the storage room. It was stuck, or at least I thought it was. It was actually locked. I managed to open it with my locker key for some reason it worked. I thought it was the locker i was using at first (i was in a rush as didn't want to leave shop floor to long as i was on my own and didn't look properly) Inside was all sorts of stuff brand new DVD boxsets, a bottle of whisky new and unopened, large box of chocolates and jewellery and gift sets. All stuff Maureen has stored in a locker. Now she isn't supposed to store shop items in this locker, not unless she pays for them the same day and your not supposed to take the key home. Surely, all this new stuff wouldn't be hers as it's not stuff you'd take to a charity shop whilst volunteering, so obviously donations that have come in.

    But she does occasionally does raffles. But storing this stuff in a locker just seemed suspicious to me and taking the key with her as well for about 2 months. The locker isn't hers it's actually anybodys who is volunteering that day.
    • Miss Heartilly
    • By Miss Heartilly 11th Jul 17, 6:53 PM
    • 36 Posts
    • 9 Thanks
    Miss Heartilly
    Is there a lone worker policy? Has an assessment been carried out relating to this?
    Originally posted by anamenottaken
    Yeah, but management seem to ignore it when it suits them as they want to keep the shop up and running I guess.
    • Mojisola
    • By Mojisola 11th Jul 17, 6:55 PM
    • 27,804 Posts
    • 70,619 Thanks
    Mojisola
    Yeah, but management seem to ignore it when it suits them as they want to keep the shop up and running I guess.
    Originally posted by Miss Heartilly
    They won't be able to keep it running if everyone leaves once Maureen comes back.
    • jessex1990
    • By jessex1990 11th Jul 17, 6:59 PM
    • 132 Posts
    • 70 Thanks
    jessex1990
    Perhaps, but either way the charity is losing money or at least it was when she was on the till.

    I dunno, not to sound 'assuming' but there's just something untrustworthy about her. Her attitude in general is terrible, she treats people horrendously. One volunteer I was working with today even said that if Maureen ever came back then she would leave as she can't be bothered with her nastiness. Another volunteer hasn't been in properly since he heard she was returning, as he said he doesn't fancy spending all day running around after her and carrying out her orders.

    I opened a locker today in the storage room. It was stuck, or at least I thought it was. It was actually locked. I managed to open it with my locker key for some reason it worked. I thought it was the locker i was using at first (i was in a rush as didn't want to leave shop floor to long as i was on my own and didn't look properly) Inside was all sorts of stuff brand new DVD boxsets, a bottle of whisky new and unopened, large box of chocolates and jewellery and gift sets. All stuff Maureen has stored in a locker. Now she isn't supposed to store shop items in this locker, not unless she pays for them the same day and your not supposed to take the key home. Surely, all this new stuff wouldn't be hers as it's not stuff you'd take to a charity shop whilst volunteering, so obviously donations that have come in.

    But she does occasionally does raffles. But storing this stuff in a locker just seemed suspicious to me and taking the key with her as well for about 2 months. The locker isn't hers it's actually anybodys who is volunteering that day.
    Originally posted by Miss Heartilly
    Take a photo of it and report your suspicions to your manager. You don't want to be accused of suspecting something and not reporting it. They might even accuse you!
    • Miss Heartilly
    • By Miss Heartilly 11th Jul 17, 7:12 PM
    • 36 Posts
    • 9 Thanks
    Miss Heartilly
    Don't know why it would surprise you. Can you see a corner shop owner who needs the takings to feed their family putting up with this? The charity doesn't bother because the people that lose out are the beneficiaries of the charity, and they aren't in a position to complain.

    The fundamental problem is that the store manager or owner is not doing their job. They could do proper accounting which would flag up the discrepancy between the stock going out and the money going in, but they don't. They have the right to install CCTV, but they don't. The OP knows what needs to be done but she doesn't have the power to do any of it. The only thing she can do is allege the theft and she doesn't have any evidence. (Even if she sees Maureen physically doing it, it is still her word against Maureen's.)

    In the OP's position I would be leaving before Maureen tries to pin the thefts on me. If this was her livelihood she would have a dilemma but it isn't.
    Originally posted by Malthusian

    Honestly, he is the worse manager I have ever had.

    This is some of the things he has done;-
    • Left me on my own running the shop, when he actually said that a volunteer can never be left on their own
      Didn't even show up on my first day in the shop to 'train me' another volunteer had to do it
      and even then I just kind of taught my self by using my own initiative and asking questions
      told me off for having my partner in the shop, helping me out when I had nobody else to help me run the shop as i was on my own as 'couples can't work together.'
      told my partner that he can't come in the shop while i am working in general even just to pop in
      moaned at me for keeping the shop open past 3 o clock. This wasn't my fault I had aload of customers come in at 10 to 3 then more came in etc.. which meant i shut the shop a bit late. what does he want me to do be rude as hell and throw them out. Anyway, i was thinking it may result in more profit for the shop and seeing as he's never around what did he care?
      got a new girl in, and gave her all responsibilities of the till and opening up etc.. and trained her up for this on her SECOND day whereas I had been there 4 months and all he had me doing was opening donations bags. When I pointed out on his list I needed some training arears ticking off as i had basically learned these by teaching myself he said 'oh ok i will look at it later.' but never did mark it off. Basically, he didn't train me but yet trains this new girl who's only on her second day., allowing me to do basic stuff.
      Say's nothing when the new girl keeps writing me snotty notes as she's on a power trip.
      Listens to the new girl who claims i haven't cashed up on the till, when i show him the till receipt he says 'oh that's not the one you cashed up." when i point out the date and that it was the day I was on. He says "Ok put the paperwork away now."
      Allows a bullying volunteer like Maureen to operate and says very little as he seems to think he needs her. Heaven knows why.
      Only see him when he pops down for half an hour about once a week, sometimes not even that. He will ring up for the 'figures' after cashing up but that's about it.

    In all honesty, I probably like the unofficial manager as I do everything.. opening the shop, deal with the deliveries, close the shop, do the till, serve the customers, sort through donations and hang them out on shop floor, i do the window display. I do the cashing up of the till, the banking and I fill in all the paperwork. If anything goes wrong, doesn't matter who's in with me I will get the blame for some reason.
    • Miss Heartilly
    • By Miss Heartilly 11th Jul 17, 7:15 PM
    • 36 Posts
    • 9 Thanks
    Miss Heartilly
    They won't be able to keep it running if everyone leaves once Maureen comes back.
    Originally posted by Mojisola
    That's true. I think I will approach the other volunteers about this and see what they say. No offence to them but some of them seem afraid to stand up for themselves and don't want the drama so I'm not sure if this will be successful or not. But I can certainly try anyway.
    • IAmWales
    • By IAmWales 11th Jul 17, 7:50 PM
    • 933 Posts
    • 2,045 Thanks
    IAmWales

    I opened a locker today in the storage room. It was stuck, or at least I thought it was. It was actually locked. I managed to open it with my locker key for some reason it worked. I thought it was the locker i was using at first (i was in a rush as didn't want to leave shop floor to long as i was on my own and didn't look properly) Inside was all sorts of stuff brand new DVD boxsets, a bottle of whisky new and unopened, large box of chocolates and jewellery and gift sets. All stuff Maureen has stored in a locker. Now she isn't supposed to store shop items in this locker, not unless she pays for them the same day and your not supposed to take the key home. Surely, all this new stuff wouldn't be hers as it's not stuff you'd take to a charity shop whilst volunteering, so obviously donations that have come in.

    But she does occasionally does raffles. But storing this stuff in a locker just seemed suspicious to me and taking the key with her as well for about 2 months. The locker isn't hers it's actually anybodys who is volunteering that day.
    Originally posted by Miss Heartilly
    You opened a locker that you thought was yours but you've now decided the stuff in it has been put there by Maureen ...

    Righty ho!
    • Miss Heartilly
    • By Miss Heartilly 11th Jul 17, 8:20 PM
    • 36 Posts
    • 9 Thanks
    Miss Heartilly
    You opened a locker that you thought was yours but you've now decided the stuff in it has been put there by Maureen ...

    Righty ho!
    Originally posted by IAmWales

    That's correct.
    • z1a
    • By z1a 11th Jul 17, 8:39 PM
    • 507 Posts
    • 391 Thanks
    z1a
    Get a friend to take something inexpensive but probably desirable to Maureen, and donate it whilst Maureen is "In charge". Then see if it goes on display.
    • ohreally
    • By ohreally 11th Jul 17, 8:41 PM
    • 6,097 Posts
    • 4,636 Thanks
    ohreally
    Why are you still volunteering for this outfit?
    • Owain Moneysaver
    • By Owain Moneysaver 11th Jul 17, 9:07 PM
    • 7,303 Posts
    • 7,689 Thanks
    Owain Moneysaver
    This sounds like your manager is incompetent or lazy or both. If this is a branch of a major reputable charity retailer then I think you need to go over the manager's head to the regional retail manager.

    Putting money aside in the till for later removal can be caught by the manager doing an impromptu till check mid-shift -- a till 'over' is just as much a concern as a till 'short' -- in fact genuine 'shorts' are usually caused by ringing-up errors and are easily detected and explained from looking at the audit roll.

    Maureen might be doing "£4 -- that's £3 to you love!" which is why the customers like her, but if she's ringing that through as £2 each time then that's £1 a go that she's keeping. Ten times a day is £50 a week.

    If you have a lone worker policy then the answer is simple -- do not open the shop. Phone the manager, and wait for him or a second volunteer to arrive. Document on your daily shift sheet, message book or whatever that the shop opened late.

    Absolutely refuse to share a till shift with Maureen -- insist that you start the shift with a witnessed float count and a clean X reading from the previous shift, you are the only operator, and you carry out a witnessed X reading, cash count and reconciliation at the end of your shift. (And the till should serial-number the X,Y,Z readings so you check your shift reading is one increment up from the previous reading, so you know no-one's doing hidden readings mid-shift).

    Also check that donation boxes are emptied and counted by two people, and the box seals should be serial-numbered too, with all donations recorded with both the seal number and the till receipt number, so that donation boxes can't be opened. Donation boxes shouldn't be used as a source of small change. A good manager should be checking that record and the actual donation box a couple of times a week.
    A kind word lasts a minute, a skelped erse is sair for a day.
    • fizz
    • By fizz 12th Jul 17, 12:06 PM
    • 737 Posts
    • 1,454 Thanks
    fizz
    Why are you still volunteering for this outfit?
    Originally posted by ohreally
    Because the OP believes in what the charity is doing? It is close to the Op's heart?....the reasons are endless.

    Chuck it in OP...there are many that would appreciate your dedication and time.

    fizz.x
    20p Savers Club 2013 #17 £7.80/£120.00
    • sangie595
    • By sangie595 12th Jul 17, 6:13 PM
    • 3,327 Posts
    • 5,498 Thanks
    sangie595
    You don't like Maureen. You don't like the manager. You don't like the "new girl". Someone is stealing but you have never seen it happen. And storing something that may or may not be legitimate in a locker that happens to open with your key. Etc. Etc.

    Are you sure the problem is everyone else?
    • Nicki
    • By Nicki 12th Jul 17, 8:32 PM
    • 7,482 Posts
    • 26,203 Thanks
    Nicki
    There was something very odd about the fact that OP's primary complaint about Maureen was that she was bossy and unfriendly and that was the reason stated for not wanting her to come back. If she's genuinely stealing from the charity that's clearly way more serious than having an abrasive personality so strange it took the OP so long to mention it, and even stranger she didn't think initially that was a better reason not to want to see her return!
    • Londonsu
    • By Londonsu 13th Jul 17, 7:12 AM
    • 1,319 Posts
    • 2,834 Thanks
    Londonsu
    I am going to try and help the OP on another post but I really am going to set you straight about the BIB


    I am a charity shop manager before that I held a very very senior position in the print trade and I assure you that even at age 62 and in an unemployment black spot I would have no trouble at all in securing employment as I have a lot to offer, my own shop before I took it over was struggling, now we are beating targets every week and I won an award for being the top shop in my area so I find your comments about charity shop mangers a tad offensive, my area manager herself who is from a high street retailer knows the value of good managers and has upped the wages in her area to recruit experienced managers because she knows a good manager will make MORE money for the charity and she expects a lot from us in return (and gets it) but even though I now earn less a month than I used to pay in tax, its still a good wage
    Last edited by MSE ForumTeam3; 19-07-2017 at 12:02 PM. Reason: Quoting deleted post
    • Londonsu
    • By Londonsu 13th Jul 17, 7:48 AM
    • 1,319 Posts
    • 2,834 Thanks
    Londonsu
    OP its clear from this thread and the other on from a 3 months ago that you feel you are intolerable situation.


    You don't say what the charity is but if there is no paid manager on site all the time and the fact that you should close at 3 means to me its not one of the big charities as most of them trade until at least 5 and have paid staff to manage the shop.


    As I stated in your last thread I don't ever say on line who I work for but if you message me and I would be happy to see if we have shops near where you live and would also be happy to contact the manager to see if they have any vacancies.


    One of the things that has come out of your posts and correct me if I am wrong is the fact that volunteers are taking the money to the bank, this is a no no, all volunteers are covered by public liability insurance whilst on site, however that insurance does not cover you if you get attacked whilst taking money to the bank, in my own shop (and others I know about) myself and my assistant are covered because we are paid staff, I also have one keyholder volunteer who can also go to the bank, but she had to sign a form and her details had to go to HR, to put it into perspective my husband volunteers in my shop, we have been married for 45 years and I trust him with my life BUT he is not a key holder volunteer, if I sent him to the bank and my charity found out I would lose my job.


    I think you need to leave, in your last thread you said you had an application form for another charity- how did that work out.
    • ScorpiondeRooftrouser
    • By ScorpiondeRooftrouser 13th Jul 17, 8:04 AM
    • 1,696 Posts
    • 2,421 Thanks
    ScorpiondeRooftrouser

    As I stated in your last thread I don't ever say on line who I work for but if you message me and I would be happy to see if we have shops near where you live and would also be happy to contact the manager to see if they have any vacancies.
    Originally posted by Londonsu
    So in one post you say how charity shop managers are a professional and competent bunch of people. And in the next you propose recruiting somebody based on this thread. Yeah.....
    • sangie595
    • By sangie595 13th Jul 17, 8:07 AM
    • 3,327 Posts
    • 5,498 Thanks
    sangie595
    I am sure that they are genuine - from their perspective. But every story has two sides, and I suspect that the truth lies somewhere in the middle. Regardless of everything, the OP appears to come across as every bit as territorial as Maureen is supposed to be. It does leave me to wonder what the "new girls" posts about her would read like.

    It seems to me that without proper management (and I agree with Londonsu - some of the comments on here about volunteers and their managers have been unacceptably offensive without any cause) what has happened here is that the mice have taken control of the kitchen, and are fighting over the cheese. Volunteers need every bit as much support and management as employees do, and in its absence they end up in the same place that many employees with poor managers do.
    Last edited by MSE ForumTeam3; 19-07-2017 at 12:02 PM. Reason: Quoting deleted post
    • Londonsu
    • By Londonsu 13th Jul 17, 4:54 PM
    • 1,319 Posts
    • 2,834 Thanks
    Londonsu
    So in one post you say how charity shop managers are a professional and competent bunch of people. And in the next you propose recruiting somebody based on this thread. Yeah.....
    Originally posted by ScorpiondeRooftrouser

    What????? I said I would see if the manager had any vacancies not they would be recruited, what I would expect to happen as an extremely professional and highly competent manger is this. OP tells me where they are based, I see if we have a branch in their area, if we do I ring the manager and ask if they are recruiting, if they are I will say there may be someone interested , I let the OP have the phone no of the shop, she rings the manager and arranges to come for an interview, she fills in the application form and has an interview, based on whether or not the manager feels they are a good fit, have the required skills and can do the hours and days required the manager either recruits or they don't - OK
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