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Posted: 5/23/2005 3:41:49 PM EST
[Last Edit: 5/24/2005 1:00:28 PM EST by 96Ag]
Today my general manager calls me into the office and tells me that they have decided to restructure the maintenance department. They are bringing in a new superintendent (my current position). They have offered me an "opportunity" to stay on as an assistant with a 90 day probationary period.

A little backstory, I am a golf course superintendent at a private golf course with extreme financial difficulties. These difficulties have been in place since the day I arrived as an assistant super., 4 years ago. 4 years ago the supt. left for another opportunity and reccomended that I be given a chance at the position. In the past two years('04,'05) in the local Avid Golfer Hill Country Edition has named our club as having the best greens. However I was told today that the golf course was not meeting expectations.

Everyone I have spoken with in the business has been impressed with what I have accomplished on a non existent budget. Now I am being told that it is not good enough. There is so much I want to say to the owner but I am restrained until I decide what I want to do.

The weirdest part is that I have desperately been looking for a new job because I hate it there, I've even tried to work up the courage to quit. It doesn't seem so bad but I am very undecided about what to do. Should I take the demotion and pay cut? or should I tell them where to stick it? I am convinced that this originated with the new GM, he and I got off to a bad start, and the fact that he is a moron does not help. When someone tells you they don't know anything about what you do and that they won't tell you how to do your job, followed with specific (and wrong) instruction about maintaining the golf course.

So I ask the ARFCOM hive mind what would you do?


Thanks

96Ag
Link Posted: 5/23/2005 3:44:33 PM EST
Sounds like you're not satisfied with where you are in the first place, and now they screw you over. I'd look elsewhere if possible, it sounds like you have a good reputation locally and wouldn't have a problem getting work elsewhere.
Link Posted: 5/23/2005 3:44:34 PM EST
Eject, eject! Life is too short to work under crappy conditions.

Semper Fi
Link Posted: 5/23/2005 3:46:13 PM EST
Find another job before you quit. As an employer, someone who is working is a lot more attractive than someone without a job. Don't talk bad about current employer when looking. Accept the new position and then start looking.
Link Posted: 5/23/2005 3:47:22 PM EST

The weirdest part is that I have desperately been looking for a new job because I hate it there, I've even tried to work up the courage to quit.


I imagine the golf course maintenance industry is a small world. My advice is to leave on good terms. A job you love is ten thousand times better than a job you hate.
Link Posted: 5/23/2005 3:47:34 PM EST
Let it play for now while looking for another job. Then tell them to stick it and why. They have actually given you a big break by not outright firing you. You can have some pay and look at your leisure. They obviously do not agree with your perspective on what needs to be done (right or wrong does not matter) and it is time for you to move on.

Besides, I am betting the new guy will be uncomfortable with you around becasue of the situation and will be looking for some reason to let you go anyway.

Good luck on the job hunt.
Bob
Link Posted: 5/23/2005 3:48:32 PM EST
Are you sure you can't get the rest of the way fired [Unemployment check, while finding a worthy employer, and getting some shooting time in]???
Link Posted: 5/23/2005 3:49:24 PM EST
[Last Edit: 5/23/2005 3:50:00 PM EST by Max_Mike]
Get out find another job... even if you have been doing you job you are going to end up the fall guy... already have are.

I have been in the position where one week you are told you doing great and everything is fine and then 6 weeks it is your entire fault… because somebody else screwed up.

Get out it will not get better.
Link Posted: 5/23/2005 3:49:29 PM EST

Originally Posted By alaman:
Find another job before you quit. As an employer, someone who is working is a lot more attractive than someone without a job. Don't talk bad about current employer when looking. Accept the new position and then start looking.



A big +1

AKASL
Link Posted: 5/23/2005 3:53:52 PM EST

Originally Posted By AKASL:

Originally Posted By alaman:
Find another job before you quit. As an employer, someone who is working is a lot more attractive than someone without a job. Don't talk bad about current employer when looking. Accept the new position and then start looking.



A big +1

AKASL



Another +1

The "probationary period" is the amount of time they think it will take you to show the new guy the ropes before they can your ass for good.


Link Posted: 5/23/2005 3:55:43 PM EST
I'd stay on and be sure to "fertilize" the greens "REAL GOOD" just like my new boss told me to
Link Posted: 5/23/2005 3:58:37 PM EST
why is the course not meeting expectations? and why do you not have better communications with the owner?

i would think that a super should should not be distant in these areas.
Link Posted: 5/23/2005 4:00:06 PM EST
Leave gracefully but don't teach the dip taking your position your job or allow your boss to take advantage of information that might be useful to him since he does not think you should be employed. Oldest trick in the book, keep the soon to be ex employee on board until the mind is picked, then throw him to the street. You do realize as soon as they get all info and contacts you have made you are outta there, don't you? Be polite, nice and leave ASAP. If the SHTF when the new guy finds out he is screwed, you might at least be reconsidered for the job. Just tell them you need to look for other employment as soon as you can based on the playing season and other courses needs. Stay til fall and you know employment can be hard to get in the golf biz.
Link Posted: 5/23/2005 4:02:31 PM EST
Move on ASAP.
Link Posted: 5/23/2005 4:02:43 PM EST
A demotion, a pay cut and probation ??

Seems pretty clear to me .

This is a typical move when they fear a wrongful dismissal case .
They shit on you , and keep it up till you quit .
Or they legally shitcan you at the end of the probationary
period because it's not working out .

Link Posted: 5/23/2005 4:08:57 PM EST
" Kill all the gophlers" "But if I kill all the golfers,isn't that illegal" "Gophers I said gophers"

Somebody had to say it
Link Posted: 5/23/2005 4:14:30 PM EST

Originally Posted By giacutter:

Originally Posted By AKASL:

Originally Posted By alaman:
Find another job before you quit. As an employer, someone who is working is a lot more attractive than someone without a job. Don't talk bad about current employer when looking. Accept the new position and then start looking.



A big +1

AKASL



Another +1

The "probationary period" is the amount of time they think it will take you to show the new guy the ropes before they can your ass for good.





That's the feeling I get. They need me but I think that bad feelings between the gm and I are what brought this to a head. As a funny side note, this is the 4th gm we have had since I took over. The 1st was the owner's brother, the owner fired him. Second was a golf pro who quit because he couldn't take the daily absurdity, the third , in the opinion of one member, needed a personality transplant. Then we have the fourth, and current , gm who feels that I didn't show proper respect. (read kiss his ass)

I am mainly tired of fantasies of Augusta National with less money than the local muni courses. Our equipment was repossessed in November, I was able to keep the course going with borrowed equipment. After several months of being turned down by every equipment company we found one to sell us an equipment package. This package is one third of the previous package both in cost and quantity of equipment, yet expectations have remained at fantasy levels. This is just the tip of the iceberg. At one point the State Atty. Gen.'s office had us listed as a company not to do business with.
Our health insurance was cancelled in October of '04 but no one mentioned it to us until the middle of December. The only way we found out was our mechanic began to receive bills, he called and was told that our insurance was cancelled. Two months later our mechanic was let go because of an inability to pay him.

So in addition to my job I have been trying to maintain our fleet of equipment. The thing that really chaps my as is this, If they give the new guy the resources that I was denied and he succeeds I will look like an ass becuase they will not share the info on their financial past with anyone. If they don't give him the resources am I an asshole for not warning him?

You'll notice I am not worried about him succeeding with the same resources I was given


96Ag

ps. Thanks for letting me vent. It helps.
Link Posted: 5/23/2005 4:16:52 PM EST

Originally Posted By MrClean4Hire:
" Kill all the gophlers" "But if I kill all the golfers,isn't that illegal" "Gophers I said gophers"

Somebody had to say it



You can bet my animatronic Gopher and Caddyshack poster is coming home with me!


96Ag
Link Posted: 5/23/2005 4:18:06 PM EST
I'm a Golf Course Assistant Superintendent.

If I were you, I'd secure another job, then quit. Look for flyers from the local chapters of GCSAA
GCSAA.org.
Life as an assistant sucks. We are grossly exploited because we are hungry for work and an opportunity to prove ourselves. As such, we work 60-70 hours a week with no overtime, etc.

You'd be taking a huge step backward, I think. When the new super gets in, he's gonna want to clean house. He's not going to want to keep a guy who had his job.


Link Posted: 5/23/2005 4:21:14 PM EST
Watch "Office Space" then apply as necessary. Try with just keep showing up to work, dont let them get your stapller though.
Link Posted: 5/23/2005 4:23:54 PM EST

Originally Posted By chrome1:
A demotion, a pay cut and probation ??

Seems pretty clear to me .

This is a typical move when they fear a wrongful dismissal case .
They shit on you , and keep it up till you quit .
Or they legally shitcan you at the end of the probationary
period because it's not working out .




I actually had an employer not only tell me that was the reason they were "letting me go" but that was the official reason they gave to the unemployment agency!
Link Posted: 5/23/2005 4:24:08 PM EST
I would immediately begin devoting all of my available time to securing a similar job at a similar facility on the strengths of your accomplishments where you are at. Make a good presentation ow how far you've brought the place on such a short time and budget.
When you are securly hired at your new location, give your current assholes all the respect and grace they've shown you - quit completely with very short notice and no follow-on support for their chosen golden-boy. Do it politely, be thorought / complete in your handoff of responsibilities and technical info, but cut them off. They are fucking you, and it's the only payback you've got.
Link Posted: 5/23/2005 4:24:57 PM EST
Link Posted: 5/23/2005 4:25:49 PM EST
Our industry is very fickle. Members, GM's, owners. Each want a different thing. Playability, Aesthetics, Politics.

Very stressful. The average duration of stay at a golf club is something like 7 years for Supers.
Link Posted: 5/23/2005 4:41:08 PM EST
"Not making expectatiions" is bean counter talk for "we can make more money bulldozint the place flat and selling out to WallMart".

The Maintenance Dept. is always the first place cut to the bone when the ship starts sinking, and if the owners know it is a gonner, they will only keep enough maint workers so the place doesn't look abandoned. BTDT Big time!

First, do NOTHING to sabotage your employer or his property.

Your business contacts are YOUR contacts. If you think you may do business with them in the future, you might contact them and see if they have any job openings. While talking to them, just mention your concerns for the long term stability of your current employer, and watch the "receivables"

These contacts you have will do more to help you than the new boss. If you keep a small business man from losing his shirt when a big account goes Ch. 11, that guy will remember you fondly, and may be an asset to you in the future.

How far are you willing to move to find work?
Link Posted: 5/23/2005 4:44:33 PM EST

Originally Posted By torstin:
why is the course not meeting expectations? and why do you not have better communications with the owner?

i would think that a super should should not be distant in these areas.



We have a development group that is interested in the property. Interestingly enough the inspector, a highly respected supt. felt he was misled by the owner. His take on why the golf course was not meeting expectations was I quote, "you are underataffed and underfunded". I have had excellent communication with the owner until the new gm came. He interjected himself in the chain of command, now all things go through him to the owner.

Regardless, the owner is semi-detached from the cold reality of running a golf course. He wants us to be equal to other high end clubs with half of the crew, and a tenth of the budget. We have bentgrass greens in central Texas, there is a certain level of financial commitment that is required. It has not been there.

Hell, I'm paid 18% less than the average private course superintendent, and 40% less than the going rate for bentgrass clubs. This whole thing is kind of farcial, I am going to speak with the owner tomorrow if he doesn't try to dodge me.


96Ag
Link Posted: 5/23/2005 4:49:43 PM EST
Seed the greens with poa and walk away.
Link Posted: 5/23/2005 4:53:12 PM EST
[Last Edit: 5/23/2005 4:54:31 PM EST by 96Ag]

Originally Posted By patchouli:
I'm a Golf Course Assistant Superintendent.

If I were you, I'd secure another job, then quit. Look for flyers from the local chapters of GCSAA
GCSAA.org.
Life as an assistant sucks. We are grossly exploited because we are hungry for work and an opportunity to prove ourselves. As such, we work 60-70 hours a week with no overtime, etc.

You'd be taking a huge step backward, I think. When the new super gets in, he's gonna want to clean house. He's not going to want to keep a guy who had his job.





I remember it well. The thing is, as the superintendent I am still working 60-70 hours a week I am one of the few superintendents I know who goes home dirtier than the crew. That is the thing that really pisses me off, I have been breaking my hump the same as when I was an assistant to apparently no gain. If you really want to have fun, use a time card for a pay period, then divide your check by the hours. Hilarity ensues.

When I was an assistant on a PGA tour stop, I was making $1.27/hr. the weeks leading up to the tournament.


96Ag
Link Posted: 5/23/2005 4:58:54 PM EST
I have yet to play on a golf course where the members think that the greens keeper is actually doing a good job. I think it is something that any golf course super is going to have to deal with. Sorry for your predicament, hopefully it will all work out for the best.
Link Posted: 5/23/2005 5:03:06 PM EST

Originally Posted By Burley:
Seed the greens with poa and walk away.







Do not tempt me!


Link Posted: 5/23/2005 5:18:04 PM EST

Originally Posted By VTHOKIESHOOTER:
I have yet to play on a golf course where the members think that the greens keeper is actually doing a good job. I think it is something that any golf course super is going to have to deal with. Sorry for your predicament, hopefully it will all work out for the best.



Unfortunately most golfers are unaware of what goes on behind the scenes. It is the nature of the beast, the ones with just a little knowledge are the dangerous ones.


96Ag
Link Posted: 5/23/2005 5:19:54 PM EST

Originally Posted By 96Ag:

Originally Posted By VTHOKIESHOOTER:
I have yet to play on a golf course where the members think that the greens keeper is actually doing a good job. I think it is something that any golf course super is going to have to deal with. Sorry for your predicament, hopefully it will all work out for the best.



Unfortunately most golfers are unaware of what goes on behind the scenes. It is the nature of the beast, the ones with just a little knowledge are the dangerous ones.


96Ag

I play with this one group of guys and they ALWAYS complain about the conditions. The thing about golf is that the conditions are always fair, because everyone has to play on the same fairways and same greens.
Link Posted: 5/23/2005 5:27:56 PM EST
That's the truth VT. Like I always tell my dad play it as it lies. It's funny, when I was at a tour stop, the Pros complain about conditions that the average golfer can only dream of. So you are right on the money.


96Ag
Link Posted: 5/23/2005 5:42:42 PM EST
I'm assuming you are in the hill country. If you can consistently get good greens in Texas summers, you will always be able to find a job. Good luck.

P.S. Would you mind placing the cup on the flat spot anywhere not near the bunker /water and at least more than 8' from the fringe.
Link Posted: 5/23/2005 5:50:39 PM EST
Spend the 90 days actively looking for another job.
Link Posted: 5/23/2005 6:26:29 PM EST
Ok...now is the time to call every salesman/vendor you deal with....chemicals, equipment, whatever and shake the tree. If the AG was after this place, they'll know why you are asking if they know of any openings. You are right. You have been replaced and they are doing an end run to get rid of you. You will be let go inside 90 days unless the new wonder boy bails and lets them hanging, then they'll want to offer you a second chance, etc.

Be polite, respectful of the new guy but have amnesia on what was done, has to be done, who does it , etc.

If you are good with equpment, one of the dealers you deal with may have a job for you. A super I know who was in a similar situation as yours now sells the gear.

Good luck.
Link Posted: 5/23/2005 6:34:19 PM EST


time to update the ol' resume and start working the Aggie Network

EPOCH
Class '03
Link Posted: 5/23/2005 6:41:50 PM EST
Ground Sterilizer works well in these conditions. Granules should be spread evenly.
Link Posted: 5/23/2005 6:51:05 PM EST
Find another place
Link Posted: 5/24/2005 3:57:59 AM EST

Originally Posted By rayra:
I would immediately begin devoting all of my available time to securing a similar job at a similar facility on the strengths of your accomplishments where you are at. Make a good presentation ow how far you've brought the place on such a short time and budget.
When you are securly hired at your new location, give your current assholes all the respect and grace they've shown you - quit completely with very short notice and no follow-on support for their chosen golden-boy you can. Do it politely, be thorought / complete in your handoff of responsibilities and technical info, but cut them off. They are fucking you, and it's the only payback you've got. , then bow out gracefully. Don't burn any bridges.



Changed it to my opinion.
Link Posted: 5/24/2005 6:25:06 AM EST
Sounds like you have 90 days to find another job before they shitcan you. Let some of the folks impressed with your accomplishments know that you are looking, the smart ones will jump to get you. I would not trash talk the situation, just say it is a disagreement with management.

Don't volunteer to help train your replacement or offer him advice, just ask him what HE wants you to do. If the GM hires a dumbass that is his problem. After all, you weren't meeting expectations so your opinion is irrelevant.
Link Posted: 5/24/2005 6:35:19 AM EST
[Last Edit: 5/24/2005 6:38:34 AM EST by goodmedicine]
Tell them you were really tired of keeping the gophers away and that you could use a break anyway.

Then...

Two weeks later let 5000 gophers loose on the course.

Man, they will be begging you to come back for twice the money


GM

ETA Be sure to use gophers trained to a whistle or something or you could F#$k yourself



Link Posted: 5/24/2005 6:57:30 AM EST
What's worth more? Your integrity or the job? I wouldn't take the demotion - I'll tell them to piss up a rope. Go straight to a competitor's course with that magazine in hand.
Link Posted: 5/24/2005 7:01:29 AM EST

Originally Posted By 96Ag:

Originally Posted By giacutter:

Originally Posted By AKASL:

Originally Posted By alaman:
Find another job before you quit. As an employer, someone who is working is a lot more attractive than someone without a job. Don't talk bad about current employer when looking. Accept the new position and then start looking.



A big +1

AKASL



Another +1

The "probationary period" is the amount of time they think it will take you to show the new guy the ropes before they can your ass for good.





That's the feeling I get. They need me but I think that bad feelings between the gm and I are what brought this to a head. As a funny side note, this is the 4th gm we have had since I took over. The 1st was the owner's brother, the owner fired him. Second was a golf pro who quit because he couldn't take the daily absurdity, the third , in the opinion of one member, needed a personality transplant. Then we have the fourth, and current , gm who feels that I didn't show proper respect. (read kiss his ass)

I am mainly tired of fantasies of Augusta National with less money than the local muni courses. Our equipment was repossessed in November, I was able to keep the course going with borrowed equipment. After several months of being turned down by every equipment company we found one to sell us an equipment package. This package is one third of the previous package both in cost and quantity of equipment, yet expectations have remained at fantasy levels. This is just the tip of the iceberg. At one point the State Atty. Gen.'s office had us listed as a company not to do business with.
Our health insurance was cancelled in October of '04 but no one mentioned it to us until the middle of December. The only way we found out was our mechanic began to receive bills, he called and was told that our insurance was cancelled. Two months later our mechanic was let go because of an inability to pay him.

So in addition to my job I have been trying to maintain our fleet of equipment. The thing that really chaps my as is this, If they give the new guy the resources that I was denied and he succeeds I will look like an ass becuase they will not share the info on their financial past with anyone. If they don't give him the resources am I an asshole for not warning him?

You'll notice I am not worried about him succeeding with the same resources I was given


96Ag

ps. Thanks for letting me vent. It helps.



WOW. Dude, if it were me, I would quit within the hour. Not paying insurance? WTF?!?!?!?!??!!!! How much insult are you willing to take? Get out, and preserve your dignity man!!!!!!!!!!!!
Link Posted: 5/24/2005 7:01:56 AM EST
It sounds like he wants to keep you around for a short time so that you can train/deal with whatever screw ups arise. Find another job A.S.A.P.
Link Posted: 5/24/2005 7:08:17 AM EST

Don't volunteer to help train your replacement or offer him advice, just ask him what HE wants you to do. If the GM hires a dumbass that is his problem. After all, you weren't meeting expectations so your opinion is irrelevant


I hate to say it he is right...

It sounds like he wants to keep you around for a short time so that you can train/deal with whatever screw ups arise. Find another job A.S.A.P.



There is a reason for this since you are not happy there someone is sending you a message
Link Posted: 5/24/2005 7:12:14 AM EST

Originally Posted By fxntime:
Leave gracefully but don't teach the dip taking your position your job or allow your boss to take advantage of information that might be useful to him since he does not think you should be employed. Oldest trick in the book, keep the soon to be ex employee on board until the mind is picked, then throw him to the street. You do realize as soon as they get all info and contacts you have made you are outta there, don't you? Be polite, nice and leave ASAP. If the SHTF when the new guy finds out he is screwed, you might at least be reconsidered for the job. Just tell them you need to look for other employment as soon as you can based on the playing season and other courses needs. Stay til fall and you know employment can be hard to get in the golf biz.



+1 this man knows of what he speaks. See it all the time in SW development too (Thank God I'm not a developer!!).

Short version, stay on and collect the check, but do NOT help this new guy in any way. In the meantime, bust your ass looking for new job.
Link Posted: 5/24/2005 7:15:27 AM EST
ah gee lets see what should you do.....I know stick around and take it UTA like you have been......
Link Posted: 5/24/2005 7:32:16 AM EST
Check with your state agency that regulates unemployment benefits. You MAY be able to quit immediately, and STILL draw full unemployment.

How?

SOME states allow you to quit and still draw benefits IF your job and or compensation materially changes.

Demoting you, and putting you on probation, and cutting your pay, qualify as "materially changing your working conditions, I DO believe."

Check it out.



Lonny
Link Posted: 5/24/2005 8:33:21 AM EST

Originally Posted By USMC2111:
Eject, eject! Life is too short to work under crappy conditions.



+1
Link Posted: 5/24/2005 8:49:04 AM EST
If you can, find another job, quit asap, no notice and then offer yourself as a "consultant" at $100 an hour to help them through thier bs as they try to figure out what to do next.
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