Why Do People Steal From the Office?
Know anyone who goes shopping for school supplies in the supply closet at the office? How about someone who insists on and for my Sistah Girls on NOT buying coffee because there’s tons of it in the Break Room?
Years ago, I worked for a company that offered bagels and coffee every Friday. It was exciting and after a few weeks one of the team members thought it would be a good idea to bring zip-lock bags every Friday so that she could load up on the office freebies. It seems that she and her whole family looked forward to bagels and coffee at her house on Saturday mornings. I remember people laughing about it around the office and I remember that she was cool with a couple of other Sistah Girls who followed her Zip-Lock Leadership. Well, there was a hater in the group because someone told someone else and it got to the Corporate Office. The Loss Prevention Team showed up, tallied up the estimated value of the goods and pressed charges!
In 2006 www.careerbuilder.com launched a survey that revealed that 38% of managers they interviewed had to fire someone for office theft. The survey also revealed that hot ticket items like paintings, plants, Band-Aids and toilet paper were a popular choice for workplace theft.
The Break Room Bandit
Stealing is not just limited to office supplies. The office refrigerator is a gold mine for some Stealing Suzies. In 2012, www.monster.com revealed data that showed that 18% of those that responded had no problem stealing meals out of the communal fridge. Some responses noted that they only take things like salad dressings and condiments. Whoa! So now you know why your honey mustard packets are missing.
Ms. Snack Bags
Former Wal-mart employee Penny Winters, frequently walked the aisles of the store scarfing down Oreo cookies as she went about her daily duties at her $11.40 per/hour gig. She was caught after management found empty cookie wrappers lying around. They launched a sting and watched her make these casual selections on video. When caught, she said she stole because she couldn’t afford to buy food. Hmmmm….
Top 4 Reasons Not to Steal from the Workplace:
1. You are getting a paycheck….no matter how under-paid you believe you are….You can buy your own damn post-it notes.
2. It’s addictive. I don’t have any evidence but I believe that stocking up on office supplies and stealing out of the fridge just for the thrills….is gateway behavior that could lead to more intense criminal activity.
3.In the majority of states, Petty Theft can result in a year or more of probation or prison.
4.See above….Really….re-read #3.