HR Challenge #1: What Is The Cause Of This New Employee Behavior?

True Story. Hire an older salesman with ok references. For a couple week the guy seems ok, comes to work early, leaves late...

Then, one morning you are supposed to go with him on a sales call; you agree just to meet at a diner near the prospect a 8:30AM.

8:30 comes no guy. No call. 8:40 guy gets to diner. He says sorry, he got rear-ended on the way. Looking at the back of his relatively new car confirms damage consistent with story.

Now instead of wondering why he was late, you are amazed he got here only 10 minutes after. You ask him. He says that 'it's no big deal' and he basically just told the other driver it was ok and that he was in a hurry to get somewhere so, he let them off the hook.

He didn't even exchange info... Looks like about $1000 of body work.

What was the cause of his behavior?

Outstanding arrest warrant(s).

Do you want my address so you can send me my prize? :)

Related to John's suggestion, was the car stolen?

Both excellent answers.

Car was apparently the new guys own property.

Guy had passed criminal/reference check 2 weeks prior.

Rex motion malfunction on diner doors can also be ruled out.

Had he been drinking or using drugs and was worried about being tested for illicit substances?


Yes, he had been drinking. He was not drunk. He was an alcoholic.

Yes, it was early AM, no he had not been drinking all night.

The 'case' was first 'solved' accidentally when a couple of days later his 'marked' car was spotted outside a nearby pub, at around 7:00AM! The weird thing was that the parking lot was full and even though the whole crew enjoyed their nightly libations at this same watering hole, no one had any idea it was open at 6:00AM every day for those enjoying requiring a stiff one or two to function properly.

Check your local pubs, there is always one around open before work. Go in if you want to see a bar 'scene' like nothing you have witnessed before!

Thanks Luke, I'll buy you a drink if you get to the States! At night.

Thanks A, that was a sad but useful cautionary tale.

I'll be sure to ask around for Undisclosed A next time I'm in the States!

Yeah, sadder than that. When he was let go, (not by me), he was given time to collect his stuff from his desk etc. Two hours later he was still there, he just kept on working, calling leads etc. He just refused to be fired. It's an interesting technique. We asked him if he needed anything and he just responded things like "I'm fine, don't worry about me."

We decided to let him finish out the day, instead of make a scene.

Fortunately he didn't come back the next day, though I noticed while driving in that next morning that he managed to make it to the pub for 'first call'. :(

Changing the subject, not to be too personal, but from what I gather you reside somewhere in Australia. Yet in your posting I don't detect any of the stereotypical affectations or even outrageously colorful catchphrases normally associated with your fine country. Which leads me to believe either:

  1. You didn't grow up there
  2. Crocodile Dundee is a crock
  3. You transcode to OED in real-time while posting for our benefit

No need to answer the above but if you make it to the states, you'll know me by my lanyard.

I noticed while driving in that next morning that he managed to make it to the pub for 'first call'. :(

What a waste and how terribly sad.

In regards to the language used in my posts, I've spent a couple of decades providing technical support via email and web forums, writing user manuals and other documentation and working with translators to translate technical documentation to and from English. I've found the clearest, simplest and most country-neutral expressions are the ones that are most readily understood by readers. I guess that's shaped the way I write. That's the official version. The unofficial version is that I just can't compete with some of the funny things that real Australians say even though I was born and raised in Australia.

I'll be sure to keep a look out for your lanyard!

Was the employee Del Griffith?

Or Tommy Callahan?

I believe it was actually Jeffery something or other. As luck would have it, he had several other tort-worthy incidents after the first:

But true to his easy-going and forgiving nature, this Dude would simply abide.

Last chance to guess. Both answers are getting warm.

Answer is not random!

Added clue: the Dude was fired within the week.

We had one similar, but just a little different many years ago when I operated an alarm company. Our accounting girl worked so much overtime we brought in some help. She wa in early and out late. It wasn't until the help found checks cashed from the back of the checkbook for about $18,000.00 that we realized why she got in first and left last.

Agree. Check kiters are among the 'hardest' working of all criminals, often skipping vacations year after year (as it is the custom in their trade), in pursuit of a better life. ;)