There’s a whiff of something that doesn’t smell quite right in bragging about how efficiently I corrected the mistakes I made in January, because I spent the whole month making those mistakes and took one morning to (a) find them and (2) put them right. I didn’t get on the phone and tell the Boss how badly things were going, or how well I’d come out of it. He doesn’t think I’m perfect, but he also doesn’t know I’m capable of screwing up a whole month.
It all started with a phone call that of course I didn’t take. I recognized the last name of a former employee on the caller ID, but it was early and I wasn’t ready to deal with anything yet. As it turned out, I had to deal with it anyway, because it was the employee’s mom. She was doing his taxes and noticed a discrepancy on the W-2 I sent him last week. It showed him making twelve thousand dollars last year, which wasn’t very likely since he’d only worked for us for three weeks.
As I told her when I called her back, if he was making that kind of money, he probably wouldn’t have quit.
I scrambled for the payroll records and sure enough, it was my fault. I’d carried over the wrong person’s previous quarter totals into this guy’s fourth quarter record. Fortunately, it’s easy these days to correct a W-2 on line, but it also affected every other annual report I’d had to send to the government. So I spent the morning and half the afternoon redoing DE-7’s and 940’s and the like. The quarterlies were correct, I think. And no other employee’s W-2 had been affected, so I lucked out there.
But there’s most of my day, shot like a possum in the pantry. I had to work twice as hard and twice as long the rest of the day, just to make up for having given over so much time to doing something that would have been so much easier if I’d done it right in the first place.