30 Years a Virgin | A Mental Health Blog | Part 3


Table of Contents

Mental Health Matters Part 2

Page 1 – The Importance of Evidence
Page 2 – Hideous Bunch of Misfits 
Page 3 – Writing Reviews Post Flight 
Page 4 – Another Incompetent Manager

Mental Health Matters Part 4

Another Incompetent Manager

Having sent Bart’s performance review to his manager on 28th December, I expected to hear from her fairly quickly. Not having heard anything after a few days I sent a second email but still received no reply.

Some days later I spoke with my own manager and said I was concerned at not having heard from her. As with all twelve performance reviews I had written from home, he had been copied in (this was my original manager).

He advised me to send an email to her manager which I did.

The following comes from evidence submitted as part of my appeal;


copy of written correspondence
From evidence I submitted as part of my appeal


Included in documentation received from cabin crew manager Lana who conducted the first investigation, I received the following email. It was from Bart’s manager to her manager;


copy of an email
MPD is a Manager Performance and Development or in other words, a cabin crew manager

A couple of weeks after flying with Bart I sent this same manager another email. It followed a flight I did with a different crew member in her team. Not having received a reply yet again, I sent a second email which can be seen below. I never heard back from her in response to either email.

You may remember senior manager xx asked during the appeal meeting if I had considered asking Bart’s manager to deliver his performance review. This time I had spoken in depth to the crew member face to face as I always had done previously and was following up with her manager.

I had told her I was going to ask her manager to try and arrange for her to work in Upper Class on her next three flights. I did that in my first email.

I’ve re typed the email I sent because in its original format the font was too small to read;


Hi Crew Manager,

I emailed you the other day regarding zz to ask if it would be possible to work her next three flights in Upper Class to gain some experience. 

I haven’t heard back from you so wanted to check you received my email?

Zz had no idea about any aspect of the Upper Class service when we boarded the aircraft.  As upward feedback on me from another crew member confirms, I spent considerable time with her explaining every step of what to do when working in the cabin.

She gave it her best shot and tried very hard but her inexperience could not be disguised. I coached her continuously throughout both sectors and we spoke at length about the importance of working in that cabin more often.

Despite assuring me she would, I know how difficult it can be to secure a position in Upper Class so am hoping you may be able to help out?

Zz has a very senior payroll number so there’s going to be a time where she finds herself having to do the Upper Class galley. I can say without any doubt that were she to find herself in that position, she’d be in trouble.

Zz is a lovely person to work alongside and she’s great with customers. Despite that, she lacks the confidence and ability at this time to offer the standard of service that’s expected in Upper Class.

She told me she knows the Economy service inside out and back to front because she mainly works there.

With kind regards,

Laurence


Having looked at my performance scores for this flight from Voice of Customer questionnaires, I saw we received a “good” from two customers in Upper Class. There was also a comment regarding the experience of a crew member.

Having made a negative comment on the discussion forum about the Voice of Customer programme and the fact it was being used for crew performance purposes, I received an email from the manager responsible for setting up the programme. He invited me to meet with him to discuss the matter further.

The following screenshot is my reply;


copy of an email
copy of an email
J and W refer to the Upper Class and Premium cabin

As you can see from this correspondence, I always allocated one inexperienced crew member a working position in Upper Class. The other three positions where possible would always be given to more experienced crew. I felt this would give junior crew members who didn’t get to work in the cabin that often an opportunity to learn. I also stated it often comes back and bites me in the bum. Need I mention my flight with Bart?


Lana is the crew manager who conducted the initial investigation into Bart’s complaint. She concluded there was a case to answer. It was then passed to cabin crew manager Hayley to deal with the disciplinary investigation.

The following screenshot comes from documentation I sent to her as part of my defence;


copy of written correspondence
PM is Performance Monitoring


Just before I close this chapter of my blog, I want to share this screenshot with you from Bart’s complaint;


copy of written correspondence
From Bart’s complaint


Considering the apparent length of my opening announcement, T who was working as Economy Cabin Supervisor plus several other members of crew had no recollection of it.

Knowing I was now dealing with a prolific liar, I contacted Customer Relations. I asked them to look at the passenger manifest from our flight.

Having confirmed my identity with my manager, they told me there was nobody with those names sitting anywhere in the Upper Class cabin. Furthermore, the two customers sitting in those seats were female.

This also comes from Bart’s complaint. As you’ll see he’s an amazing crew member. Instead of carrying one torch with spare batteries as was required, he carries three torches.


copy of written correspondence


He claims both encounters were witnessed by Upper Class Cabin Supervisor Katrina but she never mentioned it in her witness statement. The answers she gave were brief and to the point but she closed with this statement;


copy of written correspondence

Considering I had continuously accused Bart of being dishonest, crew manager Lana who compiled the questions for the witness statement could have spoken to Katrina and other members of the crew after receiving their statements.

It took her two months and ten days to complete her investigation. During that time she didn’t speak with any of them.

Crew manager Hayley who took six weeks to investigate the matter could also have spoken to the crew. She spoke to nobody.

Senior manager xx could also have questioned Bart and other members of the crew. During the period of almost eight weeks that it took her to complete her investigation, she didn’t speak to anyone either.


It was my intention in chapter 4 of my blog to publish the performance review in full that I wrote on Bart along with his response. I’m now going to do that in chapter 5.

In chapter 4 I want to cover the incident that took place between myself and a company director.

I want to do this to show how minor the incident was yet senior manager xx used the opportunity to serve me with a second final written warning.

The entire matter should be covered in one chapter. I can then return to the grievance raised against me by Bart.

Earlier on I mentioned something that Bart, Anna and Mia accused me of in the hotel lobby in Atlanta. I said I’d come back to it but haven’t had the chance. I’ll talk about that in chapter 5.

To kick off chapter 4 I’ll explain why I believe senior manager xx was so determined for me to lose my job.


7 thoughts on “30 Years a Virgin | A Mental Health Blog | Part 3

  1. Thank you Julie. I loved my job and felt privileged to be working for the airline. I always did my best and couldn’t do more than that. Sadly what happened to me has happened to many others. I’m just the first to document my experience. Bullying damages lives. It certainly damaged mine. The whole situation is a disgrace.

    Things are slowly getting better but it’s a long road to full recovery. It’s taken almost three years for me to get to where I am today. x

    Like

  2. So sad and unnecessary. I’m sorry and saddened that you had to go through this. You always showed so much integrity, loyalty and was so much fun to fly with. Always professional … always smiling.

    Wishing you a brighter, fairer and happier future x

    Liked by 1 person

  3. Ahhh thank you Justine. We flew together many times and I always remember your smile. I met so many amazing people during my time with Virgin Atlantic and you were definitely one of them. It really was the best job in the world.

    The company has certainly changed but so has the world we live in.

    Thank you for your lovely words, they mean a great deal to me.

    x

    Like

  4. I always loved flying with you Laurence , im sorry you have gone through this after so many years working for VA with an unblemished working record .. you were always the name on the check in sheet to bring a smile to the crew that it was going to be a fun flight ! Big hugs J xx

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  5. Thank you Donna for your kind words. It’s been a tough couple of years and what I had to deal with has certainly taken its toll. Life goes on and I am trying hard to get back on track. Sadly it doesn’t leave me with very good memories of my time at Virgin Atlantic.

    I had twenty eight amazing years and two terrible ones. In time I’ll hopefully forget about the last two and remember the previous twenty eight.

    I hope life is treating you well.

    Like

  6. Hi Lawrence, I have just managed to read all you have written and I feel sad to hear what a horrible time you had, I worked with you on numerous flights, I was crew from 1996 to 2010 , I was always happy to see your name on the list and always remember you to be fun, approachable and professional, I was actually shocked to read this and the terrible things said about you, I wish all the best for the future and hope you can find some peace after all this

    Liked by 1 person

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