Skip to comments.Guess Who's Being Fired?
Posted on 07/24/2014 5:12:39 PM PDT by Kaslin
Is everything copasetic at your job? Are you feeling happy, content and secure? If so, I have some advice for you -- DON'T!
Know it or not, like it or not, you could be whisking down the road to termination. In the slightly altered words of "The Music Man," that's Termination with a capital "T," and that rhymes with "Thee," and that stands for "Canned."
If you're not worried now, take a quick peek at a recent column by Joann S. Lublin in The Wall Street Journal. Titled "Six Subtle Signs You're About to Lose Your Job," Lublin lays out the itsy-bitsy, teeny-weeny signs and signals that mean your next assignments could be packing your boxes, turning in your card key, and removing your presence from the office forever.
Now, you may think that you would never miss such a clue. After all, you've been fired so often, you could find your way to the unemployment office blindfolded. But remember, management is always thinking up new ways to torture the staff, and in the brief interval between your last firing and your next firing, there may be a whole set of excruciatingly painful humiliations you've never experienced. Yet.
Consider the case of Jill Abramson. Ms. Abramson says that she was totally surprised when she was fired as the executive editor of The New York Times. If an experienced reporter is blindsided by a pink slip, what chance does a doofus like you have?
OK, then, are you sufficiently scared? That's a good sign you are ready to learn about the really bad signs.
For example, "your boss refuses to discuss your long-term projects." This happened to one vice president sited by Lawrence J. Stybel, a leadership consultant. The VP's manager dragged his feet in approving a budget. This should have set off warning signs, but the VP "didn't connect the dots."
Unfortunately, the snail's pace at which you work makes every assignment a long-term project, so you may have to do a little probing and poking on your own.
"Can we talk about what I'm doing?" you might ask your supervisor. "I'm making so little progress, it would be motivating if I thought you cared."
If your manager turns and walks briskly away, it's time to start packing those boxes.
"Rumors fly about a hunt for your successor" is a fairly unsubtle clue, though you want to be cautious here since employers have been known to start fake searches simply to scare "underperforming" employees. To get confirmation, ask your manager if the company would like you to interview the candidates for your job.
"I have plenty of time since the work on my wrongful termination discrimination suit is going so well," you could add, helpfully. "My lawyers were really surprised you would even consider firing a full-blooded Kiowa and an orthodox Druid."
Subtle Clue No. 3, "Colleagues shun you," will not be of much use to you. You've been shunned since your first day. "You're assigned an executive coach to fix your flaws" is also a non-starter. Everyone knows you have no flaws. "You must justify your job" is another clue, and, frankly, if this comes up in your work life, you can be pretty darn sure that you're toast.
Given your sluggish performance, your toxic personality and your hardly hidden contempt for your company, it will be impossible to justify what you do, which isn't much. On the other hand, they have kept you around for quite a while, so there must be something you are doing right. (Maybe it's the fact that when it comes to making sure there are no donuts left over after staff meetings, you're a peak performer. That should be worth a couple of extra months before they give you the boot.)
The final subtle clue is definitely not so subtle: "Your supervisor suddenly interferes with your employees." Reporter Lublin tells the sad tale of a bank executive who was surprised by his out-of-town boss suddenly showing up to run his staff meetings. "'She asked everyone's opinion but mine,' during these meetings, he observed."
After the third visit, "she eliminated his job."
Tragic, but the exec should have been proactive. When his boss showed up at his office, he should have rushed over to her office. He could have spread a little dirt, dropped a few not-so-subtle hints about why she was never at her desk, and nabbed her job, no problem.
It may not be subtle, but it is satisfying
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I get your point Mr. Goldman, but don't imply that someone working for the New York Times, in any capacity, is somehow superior to the rest of us.
I guarantee you that most of us are not a ‘doofus’ compared to good old Jill.
1. You're white
2. You're male
3. You're not gay
4. You work hard
5. You're conservative
6. You're not emasculated
In other words, getting older.
Sounds like the unpublished- “How to get a head, in Government employment”, brochure.
Sounds like the unpublished- “How to get a head, in Government employment”, brochure.
That’s it in a nutshell.
One day I told a co-worker “You know, we have no job security. We could be fired any minute.”
He asked “Do you know something I don’t know?”
I told him “No, I just got a feeling.” Thirty minutes later I got fired. That was in 1984 and I still haven’t been told why.
Very good and accurate list.
My then-wife told me that her bosses suddenly became very concerned about her physical and mental well-being. I told her, “Start looking for another job. They are going to fire you.” A week later they fired her.
At the first company I worked at (a semiconductor company) one of the industrial engineers was quite surprised when he saw a job posting for his job on the bulletin board. Sure enough, within 1 hour he was out the door. (Could have put the posting up the day after but I guess it eliminated the awkwardness of his boss having to inform him.)
That sounds like cowardliness to me, but then it’s no different then being informed via email or text message
And I just knew. I actually had my stuff in a box before they called me in. I knew my new immediate supervisor didn't like me. My previous boss had thought I was great, but she went to a different (better) company and the new girl... yeah. She had a friend she wanted to give my job to, and as far as I know, she did.
In my former grunt life I went to work expecting to be laid off or fired every day. It served me well because nearly every company I worked for shut their doors eventually. It’s especially common in aircraft manufacturing. Now, I have my own business and I wish someone WOULD fire me.
And I’ll bet you were a perfect lady.
There is a 7th sign - all of the above plus you’ve just turned 50.
This must be satire—a white guy at a construction site? Not in the last decade.
I can reduce it to one golden rule/sign:
1. You're working for someone else.
As long as you are under someone else's thumb you are an at-will employee. True security only comes when you can choose to either do business with, or fire your customers.
You forgot if your older, like over 45 years old.
People over 45 can’t get jobs a rodent petting zoos.
But if ya get lucky, watch the fatcorp fast talker talk about incentives and bonuses. He won’t tell ya it’s all BS, and these are handed out once every decade in lieu of deserved raises, if the company profit margin is up 200%.
As as soon as they tap dance about their great benefits, you’ll soon be told the company just dropped all that. But you’ll get an extra dollar an hour to buy into a super duper $600 per month family insurance plan where most everything isn’t covered. Don’t get a toothache, or your screwed.
I once worked on a very large underground construction project. While at the very bottom of the cavern I was overcome by carbon dioxide poisoning and hauled off to the hospital. When I returned to the job site the "Safety Officer" told me she didn't think I was physically qualified for the job and needed another physical.
At my sub-contractors trailer I was told that the Safety Officer had terminated me.
Going out the front gate the security guard told me, "Don't feel too bad. Last year there were 41 guys who got argon poisoning and were terminated. This "Safety" Officer is working on a "2 million accident free hours" award. If you had returned to the job, yesterday's incident would have to be considered an industrial accident. But since you are "physically unqualified", no harm, no foul, no lost "2 Million Accident Free Hour Award."
Once, I worked for United Airlines. They kept cutting my hourly wages and being buttheads in general. I stayed long enough to get free air fare to a job I lined up in Japan. After several months of angry letters being forwarded to me, I called the UA boss and told her I had quit. She refused to accept it, saying I had to come in for my ... wait for it...... EXIT INTERVIEW!! It has been 20 years and I somehow just never got around to it.
Yes, the workplace is a very brutal environment and I am not talking about gas poisoning or particularly dangerous jobs. That is particularly true in a state where the employer can fire one on the spot without reason.
My wife was an executive assistant when she got fired because she would not consent to a sexual invitation. Of course, they waited two weeks before actually firing her. That was well before all of this sexual harassment humbug. ;-)
Tell the firing party you are gay, they can’t refute it and will be condemned. That will be the last day you have to work while still getting paid.
Honorable mention on your very valid list goes to being a Christian. Maybe you could make that 6a.
Just ruthlessly efficient.
I remember when I left that company for another (better) job. I was getting my exit interview in the HR manager’s office (back then it was personnel, not HR). Behind him was a chart of the plant population. It went from a high of over 2000 to a current level of 561, all well within a year. He asked me why I was leaving and I pointed to the chart. LOL.
I have no idea how I omitted “Being Christian” from the list. Thanks.