A Man Was 2 Minutes Late To Work But Was Declared Absent For The Full Day So He & Went Back Home Since The 'Punishment' Is The Same

He had no incentive to finish out the day.

Man telling his story of walking off the job, woman checking the time @comedian_tank/TikTok; Taras Grebinets/Shutterstock

Workplace policies around attendance are there for a reason but should be well thought out. A TikToker under the account "@comedian_tank" shared a "story time" video in December 2022 where he detailed his reaction to being reprimanded when he showed up to work two minutes later than scheduled.

He started by telling viewers, “I think I [have] worked in every customer service call center there is, and they all have the same rules, especially when it comes to attendance.” He explained that missing a day of work will put an occurrence on your record, a documented instance of unplanned time off. Tank explained that usually, being tardy to work will only get you a half occurrence.


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Photo: TikTok

After receiving a full occurrence and getting in trouble for being 2 minutes late, he went home.

Believing he knew what the standard rules for customer service work were, he admitted he didn’t pay much attention during training, and so when he was given a full occurrence, he was shocked.


He had just started a job at Truist, formerly known as SunTrust Bank. After training, during his third week on the floor — meaning he was taking calls — he had been scheduled to clock in by 9:00 am. On one particular day, he had opted to spend the night at a woman’s house and underestimated the traffic and travel time from her residence to his job.

When Tank arrived at work, he got off the elevator at 9:00 on the dot. As he walked toward his station in the call center, he passed by his supervisor who was glancing down at her watch. He greeted her and she responded by letting him know it was 9:01 am and instructing him to go into "after call," a status where no new calls come in, so she could chat with him.

As he chatted with the boss, she let him know that contrary to what he believed, there was no grace period, and he was expected to be clocked in at 9:00 am. Since Tank did not log into the system until 9:02 am, he was late and would receive an occurrence. This was a surprise to him because he assumed it was customary for tardies to be just half an occurrence and not a full incident.

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He asked the woman, 'So, I get a whole occurrence for being two minutes late?' 

She confirmed that was the policy and Tank asked for additional clarification. He said, “If I call out right now… if I had never [come] in and just called out, that’s an occurrence?” When she confirmed, he replied, “Well, I’ll catch you tomorrow then. You already told me it’s like I’m not here. I already got my occurrence. I’m taking my a-- back home. I’ll catch you later. Bye!”

People in the comments were hilariously entertained by the story. One person said, “They make the rules and then get mad when you make them work in your favor,” and someone else replied, “I mean he was already marked like he was not there so, give them what they accuse you of.”

Tank was able to add a comedic spin to the situation that left people laughing at the loophole he found, but for employers, it’s a learning opportunity. Make sure the "punishment" fits the "crime." Discipline should be progressive based on the seriousness of the situation. If an employee gets the same repercussions for being a couple of minutes late as they do for missing an entire day, the only incentive to stay is not missing out on a day’s pay, and for some of us, that is more than enough.


RELATED: A Mom Went To Visit Her Son At Lunch & Caught Him Receiving An Unusual Punishment For Being 'One Minute Late' To School

NyRee Ausler is a writer and author from Seattle. She covers issues navigating the workplace using the experience garnered over two decades of working in Human Resources & Diversity, Equity, and Inclusion.