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Wednesday, November 12, 2014

Help(less) Techs

We live and die by our technicians. Without them, we are nothing. It's like the scene in Full Metal Jacket.
This is my rifle. There are many like it, but this one is mine...Without it, I am nothing.

Great techs make great pharmacists. However, there are always those ones that annoy the crap out of you. Every job, every profession has them.

We all know the type:
1. hears all the gossip any customer or fellow employee whispers but manages to be deaf to the sounds of the phone or the drive-thru bell;
2. is ready to go on break the second it's time and arrives for work at the last possible second to be considered on-time;
3. knows how to do most things, but would rather (play dumb) delegate the "hard stuff" like looking up insurances, rebills, and adding discount cards;
4. can't make eye contact or acknowledge anyone is at the counter or if they notice, will always say "someone will be right with you" while also asking the other person to get the phone;
5. takes the refills out of the queue but ignores the lone, difficult e-script that's been looming for 2 hours now;
6. manages to turn a 15 minute break into a half-day episode of Where's Waldo?;
7. suddenly can't reach any medications that are "too high" or "too low";
8. complains about where things are placed on the shelf, but doesn't alphabetize anything after the second letter in the name;
9. has never met a full trash receptacle he/she can't completely walk past and ignore;
10. will stop counting in the middle of a prescription because it's break time;
11. strategically knows when to call off certain days of the week/month;

The problem here is it's a double-edged sword. If we pick up their slack because they don't do it, they are encouraged to continue this behaviour. If we refuse to do their work for them, we get further behind and have to work that much harder the rest of the day to make up for their ineptitude.

(Short of firing them, which in many places is not an option, what is the answer?)