Read a couple of article by some journalists on what they thought will get you fired. Maybe, and some of the points were well taken. But here are a couple more from my experience. (Not being fired but seeing people get canned for stupid things.)
Don't Get Into Fights
I'm not talking politics here, I'm talking real fights. I have seen two and they were ugly and three of the four people got fired. The first fight was between two Human Resource people that finally went over the edge. The woman won, the man didn't. But they both lost because they both got fired because most companies fire anyone involved. The second fight was between an Indian and a Pakistani. These guys were top level PhD's who let a little nationalistic, religious rivalry get out of hand. One of them got fired. The other would have but he was the key guy in a certain drug development program so he got off but they locked him up in his own wing.
Abuse Expense Accounts
The number 1 reason for getting canned has to be this. Or close. Many people view expense accounts as supplemental income. They are not and they get reviewed and you can lose your job if you abuse the privilege. My rule was if I incurred an expense because I was away from home, I expensed it. This did not include the morning paper.
Some companies encourage use of the expense account, even to abuse it. My experience has been that foreign companies do this the most because personal tax rates are so high internationally that the expense account becomes a company benefit. It can also be used against you because a boss that wants to get rid of you knows what you expensed and he will use it against you. As always, honesty is the best policy.
Do Something Stupid
In business, as in life, accidents happen. Just don't let them happen to you. Becoming the laughing stock of the company is not a good idea. I know of one tax lawyer that was sent on an assignment to Brazil. Only thing was he didn't make it. Got on the plane in Chicago, transferred in Miami, flew to Sao Paulo where he got turned away. Seems you have to have a visa to enter Brazil and he didn't have it. The guy never lived it down and his nickname became Brazil. I'm surprised the guy didn't jump out a window. But he did get fired. Was he fired because of his Brazil stunt? Probably not but it sure didn't help. Try to avoid stupid.
Get Drunk At A Company Event
Enough said. The free drinks aren't free. Be careful, you are being watched.
And the Number One reason for getting fired--Not doing your job.
Amazing that the author of the article did not mention incompetence, anywhere. You will keep your job as long as you are useful to the company. If you start screwing up, thinking two and two is five, you are on your way out.
So forget the office gossip, the expense account and doing stupid things. Concentrate on getting the job done and you will keep your job. Not only keep your job, you will get promoted.