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a retirement party
Old 01-19-2014, 12:01 AM   #1
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a retirement party

Just in case there are still any of you out there who have emotional attachments to your career and a life of service...

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Old 01-19-2014, 01:17 AM   #2
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I understand his disappointment and upset, but he kept going on about how he got nothing from his company. I assume he was paid for 31 years and left with a pension? Also, he did mention that some of his co-workers bought him donuts, so it looks like they recognized him and will miss him. That would have meant more to me than whether my union recognized me or not.

I'm not trying to be dismissive but if his pension and/or savings are decent I bet that once he's enjoying his retirement, this will seem much less important. I think he's over-reacting a bit, but then I hate it when people try to organize get-togethers for me!

PS - I don't think posting that video was a particularly classy move on his part.
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Old 01-19-2014, 01:30 AM   #3
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I guess he is hurt because he feels like nobody cares about him. Well, maybe they don't! So what. Maybe he didn't do much to inspire friendship. Whatever. It doesn't matter what they think, because he is FREE.

Why does this remind me so much of junior high school?
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Old 01-19-2014, 04:04 AM   #4
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No matter how good they've had it some people are just whiners. The last thing I expect when I retire after 35+ years is a party. ( Although there are probably a few that will celebrate that I'm gone )
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Old 01-19-2014, 07:39 AM   #5
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No matter how good they've had it some people are just whiners.
+1

I didn't have a retirement party either, which was just fine since I didn't want one. Just rode off into the sunset....
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Old 01-19-2014, 08:06 AM   #6
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I didn't watch the video, the comments here were more than sufficient.

Where I worked the retirement gatherings had a funeral-like aspect. When the retiree was genuinely liked there was sadness and tears at the departure, when broadly disliked there was joy and unkindness, and there was always too much scotch whiskey. Not wanting to test this myself, I took a pass and went gently into a good night.
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Old 01-19-2014, 09:33 AM   #7
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....

I didn't have a retirement party either, which was just fine since I didn't want one. Just rode off into the sunset....
I requested that they not give me a party. Boss insisted on taking me to lunch anyway. After I said my goodbyes, I slipped out the door just like I arrived 30 years earlier.
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Old 01-19-2014, 09:35 AM   #8
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They asked if I wanted a cake and coffee thing but I declined. Instead I emailed a bunch of people and told them to meet me at a bar downtown. It was fun and we closed the joint down. That was nice and going home I actually felt like it was final. Even better, I told them to meet me at 3pm, which meant I was giving everyone permission to leave work early
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Old 01-19-2014, 09:36 AM   #9
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Was walked to the door...

But I did get a nice SS Weber gas grill!
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Old 01-19-2014, 11:02 AM   #10
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It may be he was not particularly liked, or as the article mentioned could have been mere oversight due to holiday scheduling. Although no one is owed a retirement send-off, I think 31 years deserves some sort of good-bye. Even if it is only a luncheon, or quick "meeting" with all of the workers and management, acknowledging his departure and giving good wishes for his next life stage.
I only had 2 + years tenure with my last company before leaving. In my last week the senior executives were on a business trip, and a couple of people on vacation. People came to me to give me a hand-shake, but that was all I got.....and all that I expected. If I had 31 years, I probably would have expected more.
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Old 01-19-2014, 11:24 AM   #11
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My guess is the same as W2R's: the guy was unlikeable and people elected to stay away from him. People rarely let you go without some sort of memento, even a standard-issue certificate from HR.

I never made any effort to be popular, but I received a modest but satisfying ceremony, with some big cheeses showing up to give short speeches about me, and various mementos (plaques, certificates, challenge coins, an American flag). I also got a gift card, bought from co-worker contributions. Several people had to go out of their way to arrange all this, as it is not HR's job, and we no longer have clericals who are "office social directors" as part of their duties! I gave a short speech, which people seemed to like, about the cool opportunities I've had during my career. A bunch of people shook my hand, and we all went back to work (carrying slices of excellent cake).

I was quite satisfied with the doings, especially since I hadn't worked in this particular job all that long. Some people get elaborate roasts, etc. but most don't even get as much as I did.

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Old 01-19-2014, 12:12 PM   #12
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Really, the video is sort of hilarious in that no one else is there, in the office or in the shop or anywhere. Completely empty except for him. His last day was Monday, 12/30, so the place must have been closed 12/31 or presumably that would have been his last day? Someone could have talked to him to plan something for the last day everyone would be working with him and obviously didn't (but even the week before was Christmas, so maybe it was closed down several days then too, maybe the week between Christmas and New Year's, or both weeks even), but he seems to have expected everyone to have come into work just for his retirement party.
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Old 01-19-2014, 12:32 PM   #13
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I think the video reflects more poorly on him than on his employer. The building was completely empty - not another living soul. Seems like the place was either closed for the holiday, or he drew the short straw and had to work that day on a skeleton crew due to the holiday. Either way, I know my organization would never schedule a retirement party for the week between Christmas and New Year's - everyone is GONE then!

Of course, here's a thought - it is possible his coworkers came back in the new year and threw THEMSELVES a big party to celebrate his departure.

Based on his gripes in the video, he had multiple problems with how the place was run - saying people got jobs/promotions because of who they knew, and not on talent, etc. Well - yeah. THAT is how the world w*rks. It is certainly true where I w*rk. Life isn't fair, and if he didn't figure that out a long time ago I am surprised.

My organization spews all this stuff about "we are a family" and "we care about all of you" and yada yada yada. Baloney. They are not my family. I already have my own dysfunctional extended family, thank you very much. I don't need another one. I provide a service, and they pay me for that. End of story.

He sounds very bitter - I would not waste a minute of precious freedom thinking about the employer if I were him. Just take the pension check and run!!!
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Old 01-19-2014, 01:33 PM   #14
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For what it's worth there are academic studies showing that having a retirement party of any sort (big/small/lavish/informal) can be incredibly valuable to the mental adjustment that comes during the transition into a retiree's new retired life. The studies suggested that such retirement parties were valuable to the retiree even when the effort was insincere.

One such academic book "The Experience of Retirement" by Robert S. Weiss and David J. Ekerdt (Cornell University Press) was that a retirement party of any sort helps the new retiree cope better with the end of the old life and the begging of the new one. Much as a funeral helps some move on with their life after a loss, a retirement party helps many. And whether your working life was good or bad the end of your working career represents some sort of loss.

The book which is a detailed academic study of 89 people before and after retirement, their feelings and emotions and why they chose the path(s) they did.

As an aside... I thought this book was incredibly thought provoking/enlightening for someone contemplating a retirement. I posted a review of it (linked below), however many of the posts that followed were from people that didn't want to hear what the author's had to say:

I Think I'll Keep Working
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Old 01-19-2014, 01:39 PM   #15
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Oh dear oh dear, I hope it doesn't come to that, after all our scrimping, etc.!

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a retirement party of any sort helps the new retiree cope better with the end of the old life and the begging of the new one.

l
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Old 01-19-2014, 01:41 PM   #16
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Really, the video is sort of hilarious in that no one else is there, in the office or in the shop or anywhere. Completely empty except for him. His last day was Monday, 12/30, so the place must have been closed 12/31 or presumably that would have been his last day? Someone could have talked to him to plan something for the last day everyone would be working with him and obviously didn't (but even the week before was Christmas, so maybe it was closed down several days then too, maybe the week between Christmas and New Year's, or both weeks even), but he seems to have expected everyone to have come into work just for his retirement party.
Here's what was happening in Toronto around that time:

Toronto ice storm: hydro crews restore power to 90% of city - Toronto - CBC News

My guess is that the Toronto Transit Commission had more urgent issues to deal with than this dude's retirement party.
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Old 01-19-2014, 02:04 PM   #17
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This guy could have been upset for a variety of reasons. Maybe he really put his all into his job, and couldn't believe they would treat a loyal employee like that. Maybe he's just a grumpy person who is easily slighted.

Whatever the reason, I can understand somebody feeling that way after 30+ years some where. One would hope after 30 years, a company would make sure somebody was recognized upon their leaving, no matter what the scheduling is.

However...for myself, I don't expect, nor want, any kind of sendoff. When I first graduated college, I thought I'd stay at one place my entire career. My first job out of college lasted six years, which was a couple too long in hindsight. I learned quickly. Better to be mercenary about ones' career, and jump ship when appropriate when a better opportunity comes along.

I figure there's no loyalty anymore from corporate America (or Canada, as the case may be), so I don't give my employer any more loyalty than necessary. They buy my loyalty two weeks at a time with every paycheck, no more than that.

So, when I finally leave (in another year, hopefully), I don't expect, nor want, anything. Certainly not a big sendoff, because I'm not one of those people who like the limelight, or a big fuss, anyway. I'll say my goodbyes to a select group of people, turn in my badge and laptop, walk out the door, and never look back.
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Old 01-19-2014, 02:41 PM   #18
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I felt pretty good about my retirement send off. I was taken to a very nice lunch and given a gift card. But what really touched me was two of the younger team members told me they couldn't stand to work there anymore if I left. Within two months both had resigned and left for other companies. One other had taken a lateral move in the company. I think I was actually missed.
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Old 01-19-2014, 02:51 PM   #19
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What I find amazing is that he spent time making a video. Get out, go home, enjoy your retirement. I think there is more going on here that we aren't hearing about.
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Old 01-19-2014, 03:32 PM   #20
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Here's what was happening in Toronto around that time:

Toronto ice storm: hydro crews restore power to 90% of city - Toronto - CBC News

My guess is that the Toronto Transit Commission had more urgent issues to deal with than this dude's retirement party.
I was going to ask you if something more than the holidays was going on on your side of the border. I hope this guy spent at least part of his last day on the job helping with the transit problems that day and not just waiting for his party.
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