Firing employees is never fun, but sometimes the circumstances are so bizarre, they read like fiction. To honor the Halloween season, we asked some of our favorite employers to tell us their scariest or oddest reason to fire an employee…and we were not disappointed. In fact, some stories we couldn’t even publish. Here are our top 13.
“An employee stabbed another employee in the back (literally) because his team lost a World Series game. Apparently, the victim touched the other employee’s team bumper sticker the day before and jinxed the team.”
“Got a call from another state asking if a particular person was working for me. When I said yes, they told me to keep him at work until FBI got there. He was wanted for murder. Later, I got a call from the individual’s attorney wanting me to give a good reference.”
“I’ve fired sales staff for stealing costume jewelry and then, forgetting the pieces were stolen, wearing the jewelry to work.”
“A colleague of mine fired a guy who would routinely walk past his female cube mate and pick up the hairs that she had shed on her chair and jacket. Turned out he was cataloging her hairs in an orderly fashion in his wallet and carrying them around with him.”
“A system admin came to work drunk on a weekend to upgrade a system. The individual managed to destroy a server motherboard and almost caused a fire.”
“I’ve fired people for repeatedly “drinking their lunch” and both times they just could not understand why it was a problem, despite a written company policy stating no alcohol use during a shift.”
“I threw my shoe at someone who was sleeping during a staff workshop. I didn’t fire him that day but he was fired by someone else soon after. It wasn’t my best “boss” moment.”
“I fired a lady at the end of her first week because the rest of the team complained about the way she smelled. It was a very low moment. In my defense, she smelled so bad.”
“An employee wouldn’t answer his company cell phone so I took it away from him. When I opened it up and looked through it, I discovered that he had recorded himself [committing a crime]. I turned the phone over to the police and fired him. He applied for unemployment. It was declined.”
“I shot headshots for a new client. During the shoot she invited me into a threesome with her and her boyfriend. I delivered the photos, didn’t charge her, and erased her from my contacts and my memory.”
“My Executive VP called me at lunch and asked me to return to the office ASAP. When I got there, she had an employee—who seemed high on something—in her office. I noticed there was an E-Cig, a lighter, the employee’s bachelor’s degree, and a ‘private’ toy from home on the desk. The employee informed me that the toy had a bomb in it, that his wife was trying to kill him and he didn’t know what to do. We called the police.”
“An employee suddenly started crying, quickly packed her personal belongings, and said she had to leave because her mom had a heart attack. Her mom lived in another city and she didn’t know when she would be back. Two weeks later, we find out she’s been working at another company. She returned to work and we confronted her. She admitted to receiving a job offer with more pay and wanted to try it out. While explaining that she didn’t like the other job after all, she started to unpack her box at her old desk. She was fired on the spot.”
“One of our employees was very handsome and had a lot of charisma. Unfortunately, he used that charisma to his advantage and started having ‘relations’ with co-workers. Eventually, I started getting complaints that he was offering shifts to women in exchange for love. We had to terminate him when this came to light after two coworkers became pregnant at the same time by him. Once terminated, our receptionist found out she was also pregnant…with his child.”
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