Comments on: Verizon Strike: Service vs. Smiles and duct tape http://blogs.reuters.com/mediafile/2011/08/08/verizon-strike-service-vs-smiles-and-duct-tape/ Where media and technology meet Wed, 16 Nov 2016 08:48:25 +0000 hourly 1 http://wordpress.org/?v=4.2.5 By: phoneboy800 http://blogs.reuters.com/mediafile/2011/08/08/verizon-strike-service-vs-smiles-and-duct-tape/#comment-390202 Tue, 16 Aug 2011 01:08:44 +0000 http://blogs.reuters.com/mediafile/?p=28636#comment-390202 I’m a Verizon technician currently and was also a manager for a short period of time.

@ lamely37, I am very much like you in the sense that as a technician I do my job, service my customers and am not an FMLA abuser. It was unfortunate how Verizon screwed it’s managers a while back especially their pensions/benefits. Unfortunately, you as well as I know, that when you took the management position, you had no protection. If you did, you and others would have fought to keep what they were trying to take.

I agree about the FMLA abuse but unfortunately that’s a govt program be mad at them. You also forgot to mention that while FMLA time is excused it counts against your retirement so the abusers will be working long after their 30 years in order to collect their full pension.

@ ForReal, I and most union members are not against making contributions to our benefits but the company is being unreal with their demands. Lets look at your gripe about merit increases based on performance. For years I’ve been installing FIOS service. I am not one of the technicians (bosses favorites) that gets cushy work or gets teamed up. Trust me there are plenty of techs that do. 95% of the time I get new non existing FIOS installations (and my area is all aerial). Anyone who’s had new FIOS service installed can testify to how involved (labor intensive) and timely (4-6hrs optimal, without problems) it is. Earlier this year the flavor of the month became our job productivity and we complained to no avail because the techs that do the cushy work looked like superstars. Guess what, nothing happened. There is absolutely no way that work can be distributed on an even keel for what I do. We work in very dynamic environment and there is also too much back alley dealing going on between the managers with regards to our work distribution. In addition our productivity reports are based on an average so all it would take is a few bad days during the course of a month to affect our monthly totals. Sorry, but I don’t think it’s fair I get screwed out of a raise when I bust my butt everyday.

Lastly, Verizon Execs love to complain about their losses in the wire-line business. You need to make a distinction when it comes to that end of the business. Verizon has two outside plant networks, the old copper plant (POTS DSL T1 etc..) and it’s new FIOS network (Voice/Data/Video). Now I agree that when POTS (Plain Old Telephone Service) and DSL (Digital Subscriber Line) were Verizon’s bread and butter that wireless and competition (cable/VOIP) were eroding the business but that hasn’t been the case for a while now. The Telecomm end of the company is continuing to be viable as a revenue source that’s why Verizon pumped BILLIONS into establishing, expanding and migrating it’s customers onto it’s FIOS network. Earlier this year at a meeting our third level manager stated that the company was making a profit on FIOS. My work location services 2 counties and we average 200 new installations a day and our area is no where near saturation. How many companies have invested BILLIONS in their infrastructure and are seeing profits in only 4 years during a recession?? Now think about it FIOS is a great product with the addition of another income stream (Video) and Verizon markets the hell out of it. Even with that who makes it happen and ultimately successful the people on the ground not the managers. If we(associates) weren’t placing the plant, fielding the calls, making the sales, provisioning the services, setting up the equipment on and in homes, making repairs then it’s all a nice dream. Verizon needs to remember that. Also, you can’t blame unions for the 9.1% unemployment in this country, what you need to be doing is getting out there and voting. Business drives job creation but its hard for business to thrive when your government has flawed monetary policy, financial and trade regulations that make it more lucrative for business to exist/operate outside the US.

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By: funguy http://blogs.reuters.com/mediafile/2011/08/08/verizon-strike-service-vs-smiles-and-duct-tape/#comment-390200 Mon, 15 Aug 2011 21:16:49 +0000 http://blogs.reuters.com/mediafile/?p=28636#comment-390200 Then changing to another type of phone service was not such a bad idea then. Good luck with your quest guys.

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By: ForReal http://blogs.reuters.com/mediafile/2011/08/08/verizon-strike-service-vs-smiles-and-duct-tape/#comment-390184 Fri, 12 Aug 2011 17:34:04 +0000 http://blogs.reuters.com/mediafile/?p=28636#comment-390184 So its about millions of $$$ and greed? They want union members to contribute only $100 per month towards their health care? Say what? Merit increases based on performance of the member? You mean VZ actually wants to give you a pay increase based on your performance??? No way! No more MLK holiday?? But they want to give you 5 paid personal floating holidays that you can use on any day through out the year?? Whoa that’s just wrong – This cause would have been better suited if the union made #1 issue outsourcing of jobs OUTSIDE of the US. The union should be willing to negotiate or bargain. To most of the unemployed workers in the US – it appears the union is saying give us all or give us nothing. There are plenty of the 9.1% of american workers that would love to have that opportunity.

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By: lamey37 http://blogs.reuters.com/mediafile/2011/08/08/verizon-strike-service-vs-smiles-and-duct-tape/#comment-390168 Fri, 12 Aug 2011 01:01:37 +0000 http://blogs.reuters.com/mediafile/?p=28636#comment-390168 If the associates do not get back to work, they won’t have to worry about their share of the benefits or pensions or how much the executives make. Because the company won’t be here.

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By: lamey37 http://blogs.reuters.com/mediafile/2011/08/08/verizon-strike-service-vs-smiles-and-duct-tape/#comment-390167 Fri, 12 Aug 2011 00:51:59 +0000 http://blogs.reuters.com/mediafile/?p=28636#comment-390167 I need to put my 2 cents in on this debate. I have been on both sides of the coin as an associate and as a manager. As an associate, i know there is a lot of the stuff that everyone has posted above, its unfair, too many rules, etc. However, as an associate, i saw so many things that were unfair. Such as getting bombarded with work because I did my job. Not even that I was outstanding, just doing your job makes you a star. My customers and my managers loved me because I did my job and didn’t bitch and whine and moan about every little thing. thats what happens when you work for someone, you have to do the job that is asked of you.
On the flip side, as a manager, I had employees that would not do their job. They refused to listen to coaching, refused to ask for help, and when I tried to help (which would lead to discipline – especially in the instance of one rep telling me to sit my ass down and read her email since I did not send her what I claimed to send her – shocker but I did) nothing happened. I would have to go to arbritration and take it back. And then she would go out on FMLA. Guess what, while she was out, not a single customer complaint. When she came back, the whole cycle started over again. But I will have to say those are the exceptions and not the rule.

The contract how it is written today is from times when there was no competition and Verizon was fat and happy. Times have changed and so does the contract. There are very few companies that pay FULL 100% benefits to their employers. Verizon spends $23K per year for each associate with benefits, pensions, etc.

As a manager now, I pay for my benefits. And I don’t have a pension plan. But I have a job. And in this economy isn’t that important? There are so many people that would love to have a job like that. And the people that have them do not appreciate it. While we are at it, why don’t we put some pressure on the 15% of the workforce that abuses FMLA and doesn’t come to work on a daily basis. They are sucking the company dry. Wouldn’t your life be so much better if you had a full workforce every day?

So I do think that associates should pay something for benefits like most of the world. And be happy that you are getting that. If you don’t like that then leave. Really, go find something that will make you happy.

I see most of the reports that say Verizon’s executives make too much money and I cannot disagree. However, that is not the issue on the table. From what I can see its benefits. If you don’t like what the executives make then better yourself and become one. Give up your life and your family to do nothing but Verizon all the time. Go into debt for hundreds of thousands of dollars to get the education that gets you there. Quit screwing with the 1st level managers that are killing themselves right now to keep their job.

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By: phonemanphil http://blogs.reuters.com/mediafile/2011/08/08/verizon-strike-service-vs-smiles-and-duct-tape/#comment-390162 Thu, 11 Aug 2011 12:57:47 +0000 http://blogs.reuters.com/mediafile/?p=28636#comment-390162 good morning to all!! to all those anti union people i wish you could talk with us on a one on one basis. we could enlighten you on what conditions we work under. since we cant i will try to fill you in on a couple of things.i do beleive it started with our 5th level mgr. who wanted our crew rooms to look like” her pantry”. no personal pics of any sort,no calenders ,no drawings from your children ,NOTHING,except vz official documents.next came the supply ordering moratorium. its tough to get work done when you dont have the right supplies. techs going to other garages to “borrow” their supplies.it got pretty bad at times.try to get batteries for your test equipment and the foremans reply was “dont have or cant order them so go to the store and buy them yourself,we will reimburse you.” great reply for a multi billion dollar PROFITABLE co. next came the “great truck cleanout ” all tools and most supplies to be removed and trucks to be made to look like “retail centers”. no duplicate tools or excessive supplies on the truck,along with no personal stuff like pics of our families and american flag decales and readig material(other than vz approved).the garage locations were also stripped of anything that didnt look important. thousands upon thousands of dollars of technical equipment and tools went out the door into dumpsters then the landfills. computers,desks ,chairs,speciality tools,circuit cards and even partial boxes of drop wire (thats the stuff wrapped around the pole that started this conversation). i apologize for being long winded but i could go on for a long time with more tidbits. the point im trying to make is that we do the best we can with what we have.we are given productivity goals and mandates( 1hr mandatory lunch…) that are just not attainable all the time,with the threats of discipline if their not met. its not an easy enviorment to work under. and to finish it all off the co. comes at the beginning of july and offers us a contract that strips everything away that has been gained in the last 50 years.plus gives us only 28 days to negotiate it.( i believe vz only showed up 2x for talks).i am sorry for lazy workers,EVERY industry has them,but the vast majority of our workforce DOES give a damn and cares about the work they do and the customer they service. PEACE & UNITY!!!!!!!!!!

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By: kgb04 http://blogs.reuters.com/mediafile/2011/08/08/verizon-strike-service-vs-smiles-and-duct-tape/#comment-390159 Thu, 11 Aug 2011 05:27:42 +0000 http://blogs.reuters.com/mediafile/?p=28636#comment-390159 As a former verizon sales consultant/customer service rep as well as the spouse of someone still working his a$$ off to support verizon’s greed, i’d just like to say that I can verify 100% that the comments made by jakrok are so on point its scary. What I mean by this is it is true that verizon does not care about its employees or its customers just about making more money and I don’t mean more money for us, I mean more money for them. I am saying this after being cheated out of numerous sales awards throughout the years as well as being told one day I’m doing great and then the next having my job being threatened because I actually wanted to be on the phone longer than 2 minutes to actually help a customer. Yes america you read correctly, we were reminded daily and repeatedly that we had to do what we can to get the customer off the phone because the next call may be a sale.oh and let’s not forget that our jobs were also threatened if we didn’t underhandedly add an additional 30 dollars to the customers bill with our broadband extras and essentials,you all know what I’m talking about, those mysterious charges that show up on your bill the next month after you called in to get clarity on your bill or to report a problem with your phone line. And that’s just one of many “dirty little secrets” that verizon expects its employees to keep to themselves. Please don’t fall for the hype that is corporate america(b/c verizon is not the only one) these union members are fighting to keep (barely) middle class wages, pensions and affordable healthcare all things that they had to fight to get in the first place b/c any of them will tell u, its hard as h*ll to get a job with verizon and then its a constant,day to day struggle to keep the job and keep from going insane from the stress.so give them a break and show your support. I’m done

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By: proud2B-UNION http://blogs.reuters.com/mediafile/2011/08/08/verizon-strike-service-vs-smiles-and-duct-tape/#comment-390157 Thu, 11 Aug 2011 04:34:35 +0000 http://blogs.reuters.com/mediafile/?p=28636#comment-390157 *
This strike is not just about Verizon employees and their benefits and pay. This strike is about how “CORPORATE AMERICA” wants their cake and they want to eat it as well. There are A LOT of people out there saying “those people should be happy to have a job”. Yes, I am happy to have a job. But think about that. YOU, would have a job too if “CORPORATE AMERICA” would stop sending our jobs overseas. And the jobs that are here, people are underpaid and overworked, so the CEO can get a bigger bonus. A person used to be able to work a job and support a family. Not the case now. Why? Because the people at the top want it all and will do anything to get it. Unions give the people a say and “CORPORATE AMERICA” will do ANYTHING AND EVERYTHING to break the Unions. Once they’re gone, try getting them back. It won’t happen. Just because you may not have ever worked for a Union, don’t think that a Union just causes problems for the company. The only problem that arises(for them),is that now, YOU have a Voice!!! PS: Do some research on Unions. They are the reason that “some jobs”, are “GOOD JOBS”. The reason people want to work for companies like Verizon,are the benefits and job security (Which would not be there if there was not a Union. And by the way, the Union is YOU and everyone else, coming together, to keep what should be ours. We work hard, and its all of our hard work that makes or breaks a company. So when the CEO’s get all those millions in bonuses, they have only those that work that 40+ work week to thank. And this is the thanks we get. “Hey Verizon employees, thanks for all the hard work, but we need bigger bonuses, so we want to take away everything that you have worked so hard to get and keep, and we’ll just blame it on the economy, everyone else is, so why can’t we”.

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By: CZTIIibew http://blogs.reuters.com/mediafile/2011/08/08/verizon-strike-service-vs-smiles-and-duct-tape/#comment-390156 Thu, 11 Aug 2011 03:11:21 +0000 http://blogs.reuters.com/mediafile/?p=28636#comment-390156 @onthejob you said its was a brethren that did the repair. are you sure about that when verizon has had non-union contracors before the strike even started. ps.. if only the tip was connected to a bad wire like you said that wouldn’t be a short it would be an imbalance.

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By: proudphoneman http://blogs.reuters.com/mediafile/2011/08/08/verizon-strike-service-vs-smiles-and-duct-tape/#comment-390120 Wed, 10 Aug 2011 03:17:04 +0000 http://blogs.reuters.com/mediafile/?p=28636#comment-390120 im sorry your service is still out…wish i could help but until verizon decides to come to the table and willing to work with our union your service will be affected…..even wireless because cell towers are fed off the wireline backbone…i know because i work on the t1 lines that feed the towers…WE trained competent techs feel all of the publics pain..thank you all for your support…..ONE PROUND PHONEMAN

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