Big congrats to public transport provider Transport for London (TfL), which has clinched Smarta’s Daily Mail Award for Party Pooping after they told all staff they must provide a ‘good reason’ for missing work last Monday, or they won’t be paid.
Monday, as those Londoners who weren’t on holiday or dead will fondly recall, was the day six inches of snow turned the capital from a city of gurning, rage-filled commuters into a winter wonderland in which thugs were transformed into frolicking children and moon boots were, for a day, a fashion must-have.
Monday was also the day TfL took the prudent decision to remove the city’s buses from the streets after they realised a London bus essentially becomes 9.5 tons of health and safety nightmare when combined with icy roads, as well as halting most of the overground and underground train networks.
Now, though, it has said if staff are ‘not able to provide a good reason for why they were not at work’, they will be expected to take annual or unpaid leave for that day – even though the mayor had advised commuters not to travel ‘unless absolutely necessary’.
Smarta would like to congratulate TfL for its Victorian workhouse-inspired approach to staff morale, but suggests an alternative tactic may have been to give staff a break, give them a chance to have a couple of snowball fights, and allow them to come back to work refreshed and happy, and then reward those who did make the effort to turn up.
It’s called positive reinforcement, chaps: you should give it a try.