Monday, November 06, 2006
The terminally employed...
Tom Smykowski - "Office Space"
Tom was let go from Initech but hit the jackpot after receiving a huge settlement following an auto accident. (Although, I'm pretty certain he could have gone with an age discrimination lawsuit.)
I was answering some email today and followed a link to a website that had grown out of a blog. The woman had been a web designer and was fired from her company for blogging about people she worked with. (It must have been unflattering.)
It reminded me of another woman a few months back who won a multi-million dollar lawsuit against another woman who blogged unfavorably about the litigant.
Of course, everyone has heard about people losing their jobs just for blogging at work - or wasting time on the internet. (Exceptions would include blogging for the company or with your manager's permission.) Nevertheless, it can and does happen to people who blog on their own time yet write negatively about co-workers or the company. Bloggers beware.
Unless you want to be fired, but getting fired is so much about allowing other people to make decisions about your life.
Signs to watch out for if you suspect your job may be terminal:
1) Excommunication. This may begin with the employee's excommunication of self.
- Dis-interest in one's job, or company policy. (Psychological Equivalent* = Dissociative disorder.)
- Wasting time - on personal, non-work related projects. (PE = Obsessive compulsive disorder.)
- Playing at work, visiting and gossiping with other co-workers. Personal phone calls. (PE = ADD -attention deficit disorder.)
- Negative or combative behavior - it's all about attitude. (PE = Clinical depression.)
- Complaining, complaining, complaining. (PE = Bitch)
- Coming in late, leaving early, absenteeism, taking long breaks. (PE = You don't care.)
*Denotes possible disability claims if you are terminated.
When excommunication begins with management.
- No one talks to you.
- They talk about you.
- When they do speak, it is curt and business-like, with no interest in you personally.
- Your responsibilities are lessened or taken away.
- Your internet access is blocked.
- They take your stapler away.
- You are not included in meetings.
- If you are lucky, you get warning notices - that means you are not completely excommunicated and there is a chance to save your job.
- When you are repeatedly asked why you didn't hand in your TPS report or accomplish other assignments.
- Finally, when you are asked, "What is it you actually do here?"
- Or, your office is moved to the boiler room.
How to know when excommunication is final.
- You are actually terminated.
Then maybe hope for a car accident to happen. Or maybe you can find a better job.