Appalling behaviour by Asst Manager at 99p store

Aldershot is a black hole of deprivation, so unlike other towns that have pound shops, it can only afford a 99p shop.

I was in there Thursday afternoon. As I approached the checkout, the girl asked me to go to another till as she had finished and was doing voluntary work. I wondered what she meant. Did she mean she was forced slave labour as employed by Poundland where unemployed are forced to work for nothing else risk losing their benefits.

I went to the adjacent till. What she meant was that she had finished her shift, and was not being paid. But rather than simply walk out the store and go home, she had remained to help a disabled lady pack her shopping.

What I then saw was appalling. An assistant manager, clearly a workplace bully, walked up to her, started throwing his weight around and told her off, in front of colleagues and shoppers, for helping the lady pack her bag.

I was appalled. One of the worst examples of workplace bullying I have seen.

Just from his body language he stood out as a workplace bully. From the way he treated the girl, I strongly suspect there was an element of sexism and racism. She being white and female, he male and non-white.

The girl, to her credit, did not bat an eyelid and did not let this workplace bully intimidate her. She finished what she was doing, ignored the bully throwing his weight around, told him she had finished, and walked out of the store with her head held high.

Good for her I thought.

I too was about to walk out of the store, then I thought no, I will give this bully a taste of his own medicine. I walked up to him and in very loud voice, in full view of customers and staff, told him what I thought of him.

Instead of apologising, he tried to justify his actions.

Far from having a go at the girl, he should have praised the girl for staying behind and helping a disabled customer. Had the girl done anything wrong, you take her to one side and have a quiet chat, not have a go before customers and staff.

70 Responses to “Appalling behaviour by Asst Manager at 99p store”

  1. keithpp Says:

    Stop Press: Our little bully is no longer in the employ of 99p store. Special thanks to 99p store to act so promptly.

    No company should tolerate bullying in the workplace, and I am pleased 99p store has zero tolerance.

  2. keithpp Says:

  3. Rosemary Thomas Says:

    I wish to commend the Manager of Family Bargains in Retford Naveen who is an absolute gentleman. Very kind and helpful to customers. I had bought a Lebara Top Up for my mobile phone and I was having trouble putting it on my phone not only did Naveen ask me if I was having a problem but he put the Top Up on for me and being an older lady I was very grateful.

    One other thing I would like to say is that Naveen is very smartly dressed always has a smile on his face and his English is excellent and nothing is too much trouble for him. The rest of the staff are very pleasant as well especially Priya. It is a pleasure to shop in Family Bargains in Retford.

  4. keithpp Says:

    Little acts of kindness
    https://keithpp.wordpress.com/2013/06/28/little-acts-of-kindness/

  5. Sirendra Ratna Bajracharya Says:

    Dear sir/madam,

    I am very impressed with this page of blog with such information. I work as a general assistant and I work at greyhound retail park.

    I am treated very badly as I am the national of nepal. The immediate indian manager mentally harass me everyday laughing at me and using abusive languages. He is very rude to me. I was on work one day when he started same thing again where I stood against my rights. After having argument, I started my work where after some time I felt mentally so much distracted and ill that I felt I need to take rest at home as I was also in medical treatment for stomach ulcer. On request of one day leave off, he said you can rest forever and I need to be present whenever he requires.

    As such, I have mailed couple of times to head office email in order to seek help and justice but however I am not able to get reply from them yet.

    Looking at this blog, I am encouraged to share these things to you hoping that I can get some advice, suggestion or actions required to be done and most importantly fair justice as he have challenged me that he would kick me off from my job very soon as he have powerful management network.

    I am a simple employee having no such contacts just asking for justice.

    Thanking you for your kind cooperation.

  6. keithpp Says:

    I am sorry to hear of your treatment, but sadly this is becoming common place. We are turning into a nation of temporary employment, low wages, zero-hour contracts. Or even worse, where those on benefits are being used as slave labour forced to work for nothing, or risk losing their benefits.

    Your head office should reply, if you are highlighting work place bullying. There should be zero tolerance by your employer to work place bullying. You also hint their may be a racial element.

    The Guardian are currently running a series of articles on poor working practices. They may be interested in your plight.

    Sports Direct: 90% of staff on zero-hour contracts

    I suggest you go along and talk to your local Citizen Advice Bureaux (assuming of course they have not been closed in austerity cuts).

    • Sirendra Ratna Bajracharya Says:

      I am very pleased and appreciate for your kind advice. I work in 99 p store at greyhound retail park. I was continuously asking for the contact no of area manager for the counselling where I have also seeked help from head office through email. But till date no reply. Manager was laughing becoz he did not give me the area manager’s no and threatened me saying that before u lodge ur complain, I have reported area manager that u as employee is of no use in store. M very frustrated and unhappy for its been 1 year m serving and m getting in trouble only with this new store manager in such manner. However, m finding courage to email area manager which the manager gave me very reluctantly about my concern and trying to chase him in the store Tom seeking help.

      I really appreciate your kind concern and advise to me.

      Thanking you a lot

      • Sirendra Ratna Bajracharya Says:

        Also I would like to let you know that I am handed zero contract hour inspite of all employees getting guaranteed hours recently 😦 it’s only me a victim

  7. keithpp Says:

    I have contacted Hussein Lalani @HusseinLalani1 99p Stores Co-founder and Commercial Director and asked that he investigate.

    What you have described is completely unacceptable.

    • Sirendra Ratna Bajracharya Says:

      I am very grateful to you for your kind help and concern towards me. I really really appreciate that my voice could be heard for justice by owner of 99p store.

  8. keithpp Says:

    Let us hope action is taken. Otherwise I will pass to national media.

    • Sirendra Ratna Bajracharya Says:

      I am very much pleased and really appreciate that you have approached to help me. At least even though I lose my job, I want to let people know about the wrong doing and bullying at work here. I waited for area managers’ email response but have not received yet. However the manager today asked me to take leave tomorrow telling me that he has no hour to give me. But most ridiculous thing is that I have always served the company as full time worker and now this week he only allocated me with 16 hours and asked me for forced leave whenever he thinks is required. He have restricted staffs in his cabin for I pointed him of his wrong practice of playing games In duty. If we cant go to manager, whom shall we go and report our problems to? He is mad on me for not willing to serve till where the fresh cash count before the start of the shift is not provided which I think is totally unfair. I just asked him to give me the till having cash counted before I start the shift.

      I have a impression that he is trying to suspend my job as promised using his powerful management network and creating untrue issues.

      I am very grateful to you for your kind help in raising my voice where I had almost started losing hope.

      I heartly would like to thank you for all your help and support you have provided me. You have enlightened me with the courage for the justice.

  9. keithpp Says:

  10. Sirendra Ratna Bajracharya Says:

    I am very pleased that I had an opportunity to discuss my concerns and problems at work with our area manager today which was scheduled in the morning. He has assured me that he would try his best to resolve these matters. I am looking forward for the application of promise he had made to me today and hoping for the best to demonstrate my best capabilities as before in the service. However, I heartly thank @keithpp, @HusseinLalani and team of 99P store for this approach. I am hoping for the start of healthy working environment having no discrimination and fair judgement.

  11. keithpp Says:

    Excellent news. I trust those who were involved with the workplace bullying are no longer with the company.

    • Sirendra Ratna Bajracharya Says:

      I am waiting and hoping for better results and right judgement.

      • Sirendra Ratna Bajracharya Says:

        I am very much sorry to notify you that I am really disappointed and discouraged serving in 99p store at greyhound retail park, where I had been awaiting for right judgement and fair working environment for me.

        Though I had opportunity to have meeting with area manager, where he had promised me to solve my problems has not been practically applicable in the store.

        Nothing has changed and bullying at work still exist that has mentally harassed me in a very strong manner. In such circumstance, I have lost full hope and finally have decided to resign the service where there is no proper application of justice and keeping promises.

        I am called without having proper rota everyday whenever they like with very short notice like 2 hours before start of shift. Also, to my surprise, every minute the managers are roaming around only focusing me after lodging the complain, so that in any manner they can raise any false they can see on me. However they have not been successful to do so, as I am very hard working and capable person. However, the environment at work is so much weird and unwelcoming.

        During my 1 year service in this store, this period has been the most worst and discouraging where there is environment of discrimination.

  12. keithpp Says:

    What you have described is totally unacceptable. It would appear you have been targeted for highlighting the workplace bullying.

    You say your contract was changed to zero-hours notice contract.

    There are two sides to a contract. One side cannot arbitrarily change a contract, it has to be with the agreement of both sides.

    Even the worst cases I have come across on zero-hours contract , workers are given at least a day’s notice of change of shift.

    No manager should be hovering around you. Firstly it means they are no doing their job, secondly it is harassment.

    As the Area Manager has failed to resolve the bullying, indeed it appears to have got worse following your complaint, I suggest you contact Hussein Lalani direct as he has zero tolerance to workplace bullying.

    If you resign under these circumstances, it is Constructive Dismissal. Apart from workplace bullying, there is also appears to be racial harassment.

    If you do resign, it is important you sign on immediately at your local Job Centre. They may determine you left your job voluntarily and not pay you. If they do, you must Appeal their decision. It is important that you document all that has happened, on meeting with Area manager, what was agreed or discussed, should have been put in writing, if not, you must put it in writing send to Area Manager (with a copy to Hussein Lalani) detailing what was discussed and agreed.

    It is also important you keep a detailed diary of all what happens, date and times.

    • Sirendra Ratna Bajracharya Says:

      Dear Keith, thank you for your advice, suggestions and most importantly for your kind concern towards me in helping me to raise my voice against the work bullying and discrimination.

      I believe 99 p store is a very reputed store where the customers are served by the products in very cheap and affordable price for its customers. I had very pleasant and good experience during my 1 year of working period except these last few months under the new manager who has never been genuine to me for being a citizen of Nepal. However, I would like to extend thanks to @HusseinLalani1 and the company for making me part of the team.

      Unfortunately though seeking lots of efforts for reporting the work bullying happening, I have been helpless where it’s been so much mental torture that unwillingly I have to resign which I think is very unfortunate reward for me despite of my sincerity and hard work during my 1 year tenure in the company. Through this message I just want to give the message to the owner of 99p store to be aware of problem of the general sales assistant (GSA) having no option of help and genuine working environment.

      I thank you @keith heartly for your kind concern, cooperation for helping me to raise the voice against discrimination, work bullying and unhealthy working environment.

      I am just still in a small hope that someday the company would be aware of these malpractice activities going on in the store and take necessary action required by the company.

      Thanking you for your kind cooperation.

      Regards,

      Sirendra

  13. keithpp Says:

    A question I was going to ask, and you have answered it for me, a new manager?

    • Sirendra Ratna Bajracharya Says:

      Yes, we had new manager at store few months ago since then I have been struggling and been threatened to be waived away from my job frequently in many occasions by himself and his assistant who claim to have good network in higher level of management. Me being just a general simple employee had just asked for fair working environment in which sooner the complain I lodged, more mental harassment everyday.

  14. keithpp Says:

    I asked was new manager, as the situation changed with the new manager, whereas you have remained the same.

    Had you always been treated this way, or had the treatment of you changed under same manager, one would then ask what had changed for you to be treated differently, but in this case, different treatment changed with new manager, which points the finger at the manager for causing the change.

    Today, Money Box Live on BBC Radio 4 is on employment conditions.

    http://www.bbc.co.uk/programmes/b039q5f5

  15. Sirendra Ratna Bajracharya Says:

    Yes, I have worked with two previous managers at store where I have never faced such problems. However, this new manager have an attitude on Nepalese people and have made very aggressive comments on some of the issues. In contrary, the previous managers were very hard working and used to work on the floors whereas this manager have the attittude that he is superior and need not do it. He always favour the staffs in the store who bears his cost for his lunch and bar expenses giving them opportunity to work longer shifts who are students not even the full time employees. He mostly keep himself busy playing mobile games in his cabin in which I have raised the voice for not being right. As a result, he restricted the employees in his cabin.

    In contrary, I am called mostly at the times at the last moment of my shift. Therefore, I asked him to issue fair rota and the time sheet which can be visible by all employees which he denied to show and do that. On request to distribute the equal working hours to all the employees, he got really angry on me and asked me to do 14 hrs a day just to pressurise me. When I said I cant work 14 hours a day, that week he only allocated me with 16 hours and told me that he might ask me for forced leave anytime he thinks is required and have been in such leave for some days which made me very upset. When I could not have peace discussion with the manager, I asked him to provide me the area managers number and he denied to give me but instead told me that he have very good chain of management contacts and my complain is of no use.

    However, I got an opportunity to have meeting with area manager who agreed that the issues that I have raised is no good for the store and the employees, therefore he assured me that he would handle the rota system and let all employees know the working shift at least 1 day before and the distribution of working hours would be equal to everyone. However, it has been so many days and still I am called on the spot.

    The managers are always wandering around me since the date I have lodged the complain so that they can mentally harass me and can pick any of the issues where I happen to make mistake. However it is not applicable to other staffs. Since then, I lost so much of hope of justice that I finally decided to resign because I see no prospect of help and justice.

  16. keithpp Says:

    OK, what you have described is completely unacceptable behaviour for any manager.

    You need to contact head office, tell them what has been going on, and explain, that when you asked your manager for contact details, he refused.

    Racial harassment is an offence, as is workplace bullying.

    If you are not already a member, please join the trade union for shopworkers. They may not be recognised by 99p Stores, but will be able to give you free advice.

    http://www.usdaw.org.uk/

    That you are raising these issues, you are doing 99p Stores a favour, as you are showing they have a serious problem in the workplace.

    • Sirendra Ratna Bajracharya Says:

      Dear Keith,

      Thank you very much for your kind concern, suggestion and most importantly kind support and help towards me. I would definitely try to follow your kind guidelines and try my best hoping for the best.

      • Sirendra Ratna Bajracharya Says:

        I have sent the email to the area manager and regional manager reporting my problem on 4th september where I have not received their response back. However, m still awaiting for the same.

  17. keithpp Says:

    You need to bypass the entire system and got direct to the board.

    • Sirendra Ratna Bajracharya Says:

      M tired of management behaviours in 99 p store where there is no light of help and justice. I have messaged Mr. Hussein Lalani notifying about my issues in twitter and the mails at head office and area manager many times. but, m surprised why top level are silent. m figting for justice and I would not hesitate to move on to seek justice where there is dominance of inhuman nature at work. M writing these concerns in this page as you have been helping me a lot and you have been only the light of encouragement for the fight against injustice.

  18. unknown Says:

    Did you get a conclusion on your situation.? I know what a terrible company 99p stores are to work for.. a lack of respect to employee’s not holding a manager title. Camera’s covering every angle of the building and management’s job to countielly watch u on Cameras.

  19. Molly Says:

    I recently quit 99p stores because of poor treatment by management, and appaling health and safety. After several complaints to head office nothing was done. On top of this staff are not getting their contracted hours, which by law they should be. It is the worst place I have ever worked, and myself and other members of staff have been subjected to bullying and poor treatment. It sickens me to think the managers behave the same way in other stores.

    • Hungarian girl Says:

      Same experience here. Every time i raised concern over unfair practices as mentioned.before,manager bullied me/cut my hours/shouted.at me. I s becime v bad n stressful. Also they tried to force me resign. I ve v similar experience to the Nepalese gentleman. N ng happened. Management regularly does this to people whobgt fed up n leave all the time.

  20. Annonymous Says:

    I currently work for this pathetic excuse of a company. It is so unprofessional it is unbelievable. Managers make GSA’s work like dogs whilst they sit and chat in their office. Given an hours notice to come in to work on your day off due to short staff and if you refuse your hours are threatened to be reduced. No proper training has been given i have been an employee for just under 6 months now. Managers abuse their power shout at employees absolutely appalling. I intend on leaving at the end of this month. Please don’t work for this company unless you do not value ur life!

  21. Naveed Hussain Says:

    I am a store manager working for 99p stores currently in Ashbourne. I can assure you not all managers are like this, I train and develop my staff and work with them on the shop floor. I even sweep and mop the floors with my staff at the end of shift. I try and equally distribute the working hours among my staff, unless they dont want them.

    In retail these managers who act like this need to realise that the staff are the driving force of your store. the success lies with happy staff.

    However I do have to say that from reading the emails it is true that the head office usually do not respond to complaints, and do not take your actions on board. If you have a good network and relationship with the higher level of management you will become successful. Hard work and dedication is not appreciated.

    After working for the company for 3 months I am disappointed in the attitude of higher level management. No training has been given but expect you to do everything, and if its not done your in trouble Area managers will shout at you and treat you like dirt. I have complained to the MD Mr Hussein Lalani and new Chief Operating Officer Tony Brown, I did get a reply but my question and query was avoided. I have made the decision to leave the 99p stores in Ashbourne. I will be handing in my notice.

    However I thank Mr Hussein Lalani who gave me the chance and opportunity, I loved working in my store and I think it will do very very well. However I think 99p stores are expanding too quick and the communication and lack of structure is denting the company.

    • Sirendra Ratna Bajracharya Says:

      99p stores management is just very hopeless. Though I have quit the store way back, I really feel the management is really sick. I feel very bad that it’s still same to all employees.

  22. nicola Says:

    this is still happening. my daughter is finally resigning tomorrow. Area managers who bully and harass staff and a new store manager who is so scared of the area manager its a bloody joke. how this company runs on a daily basis is beggar’s belief. Mr Hussein Lalani doesnt give a flying hoot what happens to his employees … even head office do not follow up on accusations… I suggest that there should be a public forum for the employees to express their concerns and that HR AND HEAD OFFICE actually do something along with Hussein. My daughter has had to endured sexual advances, lack of support from an area manager and two shop managers who dont do things by the book… hussein get a reality check on your company and stamp it all out once and for all. The national press would have a field day with my daughter’s story. Anyone from 99p stores reading this get mr hussein to be accountable for his companies managers .. bet he wont!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!

  23. Daniel Says:

    i totally agree withe comment i for one used to work for 99p and the inderhanded tactics being used from bullying intimindation, poor working conditions which has mice infestations. All the stock has been chewed and damaged but they still try to sell this. The managers just bully people as mostly are foreign nationals on cheap wages (if they get paid)
    I was working as an undercover reporter and shortly the real truth will come out for 99p stores, photo’s, recorded videos the lot.

    • Sarah-Jane Says:

      Hi Daniel 🙂

      I’m Sarah and I’m a current employee of 99P Stores Ltd. I work for one of their stores in Scotland, as part of their expansion programme in Scotland to create over 30 new stores in the next 3 years. I must say health and safety conditons aren’t exactly the greatest, also there is no air conditioning in our store at all, therefore the temperature is always very high and very uncomfortable to work in. I’m surprised none of our staff or customers have fainted by now. The immense heat has made a lot of potential customers walk straight back out and around 80% of customers who have approached my till have commented on it being far too hot. Also, every staff’s hours in their contracts have been cut down to the bare minimum for weeks now, yet the store has been making more business and it’s got to the point where on the last few Saturday’s, for the whole morning, only a Manager and Sales Assistant has been in the store. Staff hours on the Rota are seriously messed up, meaning our delivery timescale is miles behind target and because a lot of staff have been dismissed in the last couple of weeks, there is now only 1 colleague serving on the tills most of the time, even when the queue gets large, it’s running up to the Festive Period now, therefore because there’s hardly any staff left, there is a lot more pressure and stress on the remaining staff there to deal with a larger workload and therefore have to “speed up” when serving. Now considering there is such strict monitoring on our Voids and Till Balance, also having to be very fast because of how muh less staff are still at this store, it makes the job a lot more demanding and stressful for us, however I have been told that on work performance, they have nothing to find fault with and that it’s at a very good standard, so that makes a big difference. Don’t get me wrong, I really enjoy my job, just wish there was a much better way of dealing with our shortage of staff and the rota hours, especially those only on 8 hour contracts. Also, the heat, apparently though there is nothing that can be done about that because of the way it was removed by the previous store.

      I find it pretty interesting you mentioning the mice subject. Just the other week, I overheard to of my colleagues discussing how mice has got into the building from the Delivery Van, were already inside a few of the boxes and had made holes in bags of sweets. I was absolutely mortified, especially when they showed me an example of this being done. However, I was reassured that the mice didn’t come from within the building and in fact were from the Delivery. My worry is that they are still inside and have managed to escape being caught before Management checked through all the delivery. I’m seriously starting to consider reporting it to Trading Standards. What do you think I should do? Please get back to me asap. Thanks.

  24. keithpp Says:

    I look forward to your report Daniel.

    If mice were chewing the stock, which was then sold, this should have been reported to the local Environmental Health.

    99p Store in Aldershot, mainly, if not entirely cheap immigrant labour.

    This is even more so in Lidl in Aldershot, cheap immigrant labour and the service is appalling.

  25. Tamas Ratz Says:

    keithpp while i greatly admire your passion and dedication for worker’s rights and better workplace environment i must warn you over your last reply. For me, it seemed rather racist of you referring to the 99p Store in Aldershot with a clearly derogatory “cheap immigrant labour”.
    My question to you is, have you ever revisited that store after the incident with the assistant manager? I don’t think you have, because if you’d had, you’d know that the store, its team, and the service provided, not to mention the work that they put in, shouldn’t be described so coldly and unjustly as “cheap”.

  26. keithpp Says:

    Sadly, a lack of understanding of English language.

    Use of the phrase “cheap immigrant labour” is neither cold, nor racist, nor implies not hard working, it translates as immigrant workforce on low wages.

    Or are you trying to say 99p Stores are paying higher than minimum wage, that they are paying a living wage, that they are not employing immigrant labour?

    It is what many of the commentators are saying, and they are not English.

    Go to the fields in Lincolnshire, you will will find hard working cheap immigrant labour.

    I have visited the Aldershot store many times. Not once have I said they are neither hard working nor unhelpful. The Nepalese girls on the cash tills always have a smile.

    It helps to understand the English language, and not to jump to unfounded conclusions.

    I am not displaying ‘passion and dedication for worker’s rights and better workplace environment’, though I would agree, they are worthy things to pursue, I am merely providing the forum for others to raise these issues, having exposed one unpleasant incident.

  27. keithpp Says:

    99p Stores obstacle course
    https://keithpp.wordpress.com/2014/06/19/99p-stores-obstacle-course/

  28. Tamas Ratz Says:

    The only thing i’m saying is that you should NOT have used the word “immigrant” at all. I knew all too well what you meant, trust me I know 5 languages and English isn’t the hardest.
    If you would have used just “cheap labour” as you did with your example, everything would have been fine.
    From what i can see you like doing your research, with pictures and all that, although with hasty conclusions, so what if i told you that the 99p in Aldershot and the one in Farnborough both have English managers, along with English employees, 1 in Aldershot, at least 3 in Farnborough.

  29. keithpp Says:

    You have still completely missed the point.

    There are a lot of McJobs around. The wages are low, not a living wage, often less than minimum wage, zero-hours, temporary, no security, poor workings conditions.

    These are the jobs that go to immigrants, as they are dazzled by what they think are high wages.

    Sports Direct: 90% of staff on zero-hour contracts
    Unemployed forced to take zero hours jobs or be sanctioned for three months

    How many staff employed by 99p Stores Aldershot, of which only one, the manager, English?

    Also note the high staff turnover.

    In 99p Stores Farnborough, a very charming and always helpful Indian assistant manager. And the prices are cheaper at 97p, though not as cheap as Poundland at 95p.

    What is the minimum wage in Romania? What is the level of unemployment?

    I have not said English is hard or easy. Though the lack of ability of native residents in Aldershot to communicate in their own language, would imply difficult, at least for them.

    Your own comprehension of English poor, as you keep construing arguments that are not there.

    If you knew what I meant, then why state I meant something else?

  30. keithpp Says:

    Working poverty is ‘national scandal’ says Archbishop
    http://www.bbc.co.uk/news/uk-politics-27981975

  31. keithpp Says:

    Long queue at 99p Stores Aldershot, at least three staff standing around. Eventually guy on check out calls for back up.

    Is this what is meant by service?

    • Hanna Says:

      Hi Keith, I am the store manager for one of the stores you have mentioned. I won’t say which one as I don’t wish for my comments to be construed as being ‘on behalf of my employer’ however I think that what the colleagues have had to suffer is outrageous. I fail to understand how anyone can treat another human being in this way! Retail management is tough, it’s tougher if you don’t have a team who are happy, who enjoy their work and who respect you. The company I work for DO NOT issue zero hour contracts. I could never work for a company that does.

  32. Jason lowden Says:

    I wish to make a formal complaint about a manager who I was working for within your company I find her very rude and abrupt

  33. keithpp Says:

    Sexual harassment is a criminal offence. It should be reported to the Police.

    Health and Safety breaches are potentially a criminal offence. These should be reported to Health and Safety Executive (HSE).

    Infestation by mice should be reported to local Environmental Health.

    Scotland has different legislation to England. It may be different bodies handle these matters.

  34. Anonymous Says:

    It’s really saddening and disgusting to hear this kind of incidents happen. I would like to add that I am an ex staff member of Family Bargains shop in Slough and I was appalled to see how many staff would be bullied and made slaves which resorted to them leaving, the Trainee Manager would make sure they give resignation letter to make a point so Head Office do not query this. Trainee manager at this shop would play manipulative games and is still working there whilst now dating one of the staff member who works there. I left as I was gifted with a much better and well paid job, whilst leaving I truly feel for those poor employees left there who have to put up with this abuse and misconduct from management, all being threatened that they will get the sack. Money would be shifted from the tills just to get the cashiers sacked this is happening in the 20th century. Never experienced anything like it in all my years. I am sure if all the employees past and present were to be interviewed justice will prevail.

  35. anonomys Says:

    Firstly ,I I would never wish my worst enemies to be working at this store.the working conditions of an employee is beyond appauling .there is no regards for health and safety.I have witnessed fellow employees work for 15 hours and then expected to work same hours the very next day all in the name of flexible zero hour contract. Sometimes even going without a single day off in 2_3 weeks with hectic hours.this leaves no room for an employee to establish any personal life or plan anything as there is no rota.employees are told what shift they will be doing at the end of their shift.when employees complain of tiredness they are simply disregarded.All big deliveries are done manually with uncertain break timings.there is no training given on health and safety procedures.very bad management.

  36. KarenPalmer Says:

    i started work at the 99p storeshop in Aldershot in November.The health and safety is really bad and no training.There people working very long hours plus u dont get paid for your breaks.My last day was on the 22nd December they saId my cotract runs out Christmas eve.Why on the 22nd December they were interwing people.Me knowing i am going to be out of work.Crap company to work for

  37. Frances Says:

    I am disgusted at the bullying that goes on in the workplace. I am a primary school teacher and am passionate about tackling bullying in schools but sadly I think there is more bullying in the workplace by adults than by children! I have been through hell and back with my husband who has been bullied for 6mths since starting his new job in retail. His manager, who is an egotistical control freak, has systematically belittled and stripped all my husbands confidence leaving him to have depression before Christmas. He is desperate to oust my husband and the language and names he calls him is appalling not to mention the body language and pointing in his face and ignoring him for the whole day. We have some documentation (emails and texts) and I have finally (after much supporting and encouraging) persuaded my husband to take charge of the situation and take out a grievance against this pig of a man. Sadly many staff hate this man but are terrified to log a grievance and the union have said they all pull out at the last minute. Hopefully the company will act appropriately following receipt of the grievance but who can we go to if they take the bosses side? He may be a nasty piece of work but he gets them the results so will they side with him? I am not willing to allow him to get away with it after the grief we have had and I will take this further on behalf of my husband if need be. Any advice of next steps would be appreciated.

  38. keithpp Says:

    Document everything. Time, date, what was said etc.

    Yes, file grievance complaint and copy to boss of company, with additional note, does he/she tolerate this sort of behaviour.

    Yes, involve unions.

    Talk to CAB and get advice from union regionally or nationally, as they will have specialist people in this area.

    Good luck.

  39. Frances Says:

    Thank you. I appreciate your support with this. I know he has done most of the above. He has kept a diary of incidents and has printed out abusive emails with swearing etc. He was signed off for a few weeks due to stress at work and the doctor has recorded this for him. I guess we just have to wait now and act accordingly once they acknowledge the grievance. Reading some of the stories on here has made me realise he is not alone but I am shocked at how common it is. Many thanks.

  40. keithpp Says:

    Bullying in the workplace is not only unacceptable behaviour and counter-productive it is illegal.

    All work places should have zero tolerance to work place bullying.

    Ask the boss, does he/she condone workplace bullying? If not, then you expect the person to be fired and compensation paid.

    Working practices such as zero hour contracts, encourages bullying.

  41. Neelu Hasnat Says:

    Recently i too have decided to quite 99p Store. one of the most poorly trained, badly coordinated, ill-mannered staff run companies. I have recently written to M Hussein to draw his attention about a specific indecent [along with other issues that too also involves abusive behaviour by a senior member of staff] and letter I have done some research/investigation into the matters. Let’s see what Mr Lalani’s action/response in this regard, then i will get back with full story.

    However at this point in time I can confidently affirm that the company has got a very efficiently rude Customer Services head who is particularly good at ‘sweep unpleasant things under the carpet’. Well Cover up is a way of doing business! 😛

    Amen!

  42. Leon Ogden Says:

    How do i tell you i know not to walk back in your Leeds store with the why i was treated, i went in for josh sticks not one packet in sight.

    So as i left the store the secuirty guard asked me to open my suitcase, so i said back yes when you get the police called to make you look like a clown because there’s nothing in this suitcase from here ? So am sorry i won’t walk back in with the way i was treated .

  43. keithpp Says:

    You do not have to open your suitcase. Politely tell them to get lost.

    I you are detained, it is unlawful imprisonment.

    If they lay a hand on you, it is common assault
    .

  44. Josh Says:

    Some of the current 99p stores upper management are racists. They are currently replacing foreign managers who worked very hard for them for years. I am not disputing here that there were some store managers behaving inappropriate, and clearly these are cases which need to be sorted out. There is no doubt that incidents like this can damage a brand. But not all of the store managers are bullies at work; some were very polite, caring for their staff, competent and hard working. They just didn’t speak English by the book. There is no reason to throw them all in one pot. I do not know if the owners of this company are aware of that or what they are being told by their area managers. A good company owner is hearing out all sides if something’s not right, and not just the ones in his immediate vicinity. I know that they are employing at least one area manager who had to leave his previous company due to racist behaviour against employees and apparently he just continues this at his new working place. I do not work there myself but I have friends in both companies from the upper management.

    Firing someone due to breach of health & safety rules and deliberately looking for these errors to get rid of them, while the whole working place is a risk – not even to their employees, but also to the customers is nothing less than deviousness. The buildings in the UK are old so you better think twice next time when you see dust on the floor or on the shelves, it could be asbestos. (Sarcasm on) It’s better to be greedy instead of fixing broken stuff and train the staff before firing them for things they have not been trained on, isn’t it? (Sarcasm off)

  45. keithpp Says:

    99p Stores Farnborough had an excellent manager from Sri Lanka. Sadly no longer there.

    99p Stores Aldershot has an excellent manger from Romania. Also a lovely English girl Laura on the cash desk, always has a lovely smile.

  46. jael Says:

    I’m very concerned well to be honest angry the way someone close to me who works in the 99p store… i would like to know their policy on overtime… cos as it stands this person contracted hours is 8 a week.. starts around 8am and is expected to tidy the area which they work no problem.. but my fury is staff are unable to leave and afraid to for fear of being dismissed.. so working up to 11pm at night and told they have to stay… can I get help please to take this matter further…

  47. jael Says:

    I’m very concerned well to be honest angry the way someone close to me who works in the 99p store… i would like to know their policy on overtime… cos as it stands this person contracted hours is 8 a week.. starts around 8am and is expected to tidy the area which they work no problem.. but my fury is staff are unable to leave and afraid to for fear of being dismissed.. so working up to 11pm at night and told they have to stay… can I get help please to take this matter further…company say short staff reason being but overtime is a choice and the person is becoming stressed..

  48. Veda Says:

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  49. R Thomas Says:

    Why no comments on 99p stores is it because they have changed to Pound shops

  50. keithpp Says:

    99p Stores have not changed to Poundland, have been taken over by Poundland.

    Not good news, as restricts choice.

    It was not good for Poundland either.

    It caused their share price to collapse. That and a weak pound, Poundland in turn has been taken over. Poundland is now owned by a South African firm.

  51. keithpp Says:

    No problem, use as forum for 99p Stores and Poundland.

  52. keithpp Says:

    No, I do not think staff conditions have improved.

    Talking to one staff member, had relocated from store to another, then told not wanted, had to relocate to another store as store could not afford to employ.

    Each time new employment, which means do not accrue any employment rights.

    If I understood correctly, and staff member may have got it wrong, employed by the store not the group.

    Poundland, were (and I do not know if still true), part of workfare. If on benefits, forced to work for Poundland for nothing else lose benefits.

    I do not think they operate zero hours as for example Sports Direct, but I may be wrong.

    An employee may wish to clarify these points.

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