In these hard economic times, you don't want to get fired. If you do, for some reason, here is how you do it.
1. Don't bother learning what's expected of you.
Sit down with your manager and make sure you understand exactly what your job entails, your deadlines and any relevant department policies. This eliminates ambiguity and ensures you'll know how your performance measures up.
This writer seems to have a pretty good handle on the subject, probably has been fired a time or two. This works only if your boss knows what is expected of him/her. Not always the case.
2. Learn to say, "That's not part of my job description," and use it frequently.
Everyone needs to set limits, but doing only the bare minimum sends a clear message that you're just interested in a regular paycheck. Sooner or later, your boss will start looking for someone willing to take more initiative.
If you say something like this you deserve to be fired as your boss writes your job description so he/she (I'm going to can this he/she stuff, will go with he for writing ease) can tell you to do anything they want, within legal things that is.
Go shopping in the supply closet.
While you're at it, run a few errands with the company car and pad your expense report. Stealing from the company is one of the best ways to guarantee your immediate dismissal.
Everybody ends up with the odd company pen or pencil at home, just don't overdo it. I doubt if few people raid the company store on a regular basis, I mean how many staplers do you need? But the expense account is a different story. I have seen more careeers go down the drain because of this than any other source. One big place to watch out for is if the COMPANY allows and even encourages you to 'pad the expense account.' I don't know if many companies do it now but a few years ago many companies allowed executives to view the expense account as additional income. The worst example I have seen is a guy went to work for a company, he was encouraged to pad the expense account with personal items, then the company fired him for some reason. He wanted a package and they said no, you stole from the company. And he had.
For those of you clucking about the evil American capitalism that would allow such a thing, it is my experience that most companies that allow expense account padding are foreign companies. The tax rates are so high that living off the company is viewed as ok. But don't make it ok for you.
4. Abuse company technology.
Think your boss won't notice that you spend more time instant messaging your friends than you do working? Think again. Most companies monitor all their employees' e-mails and Internet usage -- and that includes what you do with your laptop after hours. Never use your company computer for anything illegal or X-rated.
This one is on the money. Just read an article in Newsweek or Time and the programs they have to catch you are unreal. I wouldn't go near a computer at work any more for personal stuff. Stay away.
5. Complain about your job to anyone who will listen.
Whether your pay is too low, the work is drudgery or you think your boss is an idiot, be careful of who hears you complain. If it gets back to your boss, she may just put you out of your misery.
It is a sad fact that you spend more time at your company than with your family but it is true. And familiarity breeds contempt. Companies are just huge rumor mills so the least said the better. Get a dog or a punching bag but try and limit the bitching. This is really hard. Believe me, I know.
6. Forget teamwork -- look out for No. 1.
No one wants to work with an arrogant employee who steals ideas or an egotistical worker who demeans others. Helping your co-workers doesn't make you a pushover, it makes you smart. Likeable employees move up the company ranks more quickly, and your colleagues will be more likely to help you find leads when you launch your next job search.
No one wants to work with arrogant employees but we all do. Number 6 is not a bad idea but it doesn't tell us how to handle the situation. Be patient is the best way. I had a boss who when he really got ticked about something would write a memo to the moron that made him mad and then stick it in a drawer for at least 24 hours. Then he would pull it out, read it and decide whether to send it or trash it. He said in all his years of corporate politics he only sent one memo. And it was the biggest mistake of his life.
This is not to say you just bend over for anybody. But don't talk about it. If you got a problem go to the source and confront the person. Unless the problem is your boss and then you have to be more creative.
7. Bring your personal life to work.
It's inevitable that personal business is going to pop up during work hours. But keep in mind that cubicles don't lend any privacy, so the whole office can hear -- and are distracted by -- you making that appointment with your waxer. Keep personal calls and errands to a minimum during work hours.
This one probably won't get you fired. But it is annoying so keep it to a minimum.
8. Consistently work "abbreviated" workdays.
Want to show your boss how little you care about your job or career progress? Regularly come in late and leave early. After all, if you can't be trusted to show up on time, how can your boss trust you with more responsibility?
This is pretty stupid. Work the hours your boss works, at least until you get promoted or there is some sign your boss thinks you walk on water. Bad habits become annoying. Walking past your bosses office 15 minutes after start time when he has been there an hour already will not get you any points. I know because a friend of mine had a guy that did that. Drove him crazy. So for the first few months the solution is easy--arrive when or before your boss does and leave when or after your boss does. May be a bit of a hassle but well, as my wife says, that's life in the big.
9. Treat deadlines more like guidelines.
When you procrastinate, everyone suffers. Your missed deadlines reflect poorly on you and your boss, and they delay everyone else on the project, since they can't finish their work until you do yours.
Again, if you need to know this, you are already in big trouble. They don't call them kind of deadlines. They are deadlines and if you miss more than one your job will be dead.
10. Operate the gossip mill.
While you can't avoid office gossip completely, don't get caught spreading it. Think about it: Do you really want hurtful or untrue rumors to be traced back to you? And remember: A few martinis are no excuse for getting loose-lipped.
Not a problem for me. A few martinis and I can't talk.
Well, that is it. The ten things that will get you fired.