Friday, April 22, 2005

How To Lose A Job In Ten Days

The suggestions for "how to get laid off" are starting to flow in.

B.D. offers a conventional approach:

-Never volunteer for any projects

-Do enough to JUST get by

-Any projects that you do, do mediocre (i.e. do minimal research)

-Never work more than 40 hours

-Work on projects that don't necessarily help the company, just busy work

-Never have any ideas

-Question all changes, be annoyed by changes within the company (i.e. process changes)

-Bug your boss a lot about your work (the inability to work independently)

Not bad, although I don't know if it's enough to differentiate yourself from 80% of the corporate workforce.

Das shares a coworker's experience:

When I was an engineer at Honeywell I had a coworker, Frank, who hated his job and all his peers. During one of the annual layoff/purges of engineers Honeywell always has, a management drone, comfortably ensconced at layer 16 of a 35 layer deep org-chart, decided to interview all of us to make us justify our jobs. In this group interview Frank, when asked what he did all day, said "I usually sit at my desk and tinker with my pc for an hour or so, then I walk around the plant until lunch and then nap until 4:00. He then asked "What do you do to add to the bottom line?"

This wasn't enough to get him gone. So one day he sticks his head into a big meeting at about 11:00 and says "Hey, I'm going over to a movie at the Cooper (It was still there at the time) and then to TGI Fridays for a few drinks. You can reach me there."

That still didn't work, so he got into a fistfight with a coworker. That worked.

Life imitates Office Space? More likely the other way around.

Finally, Shawn sounds a warning:

That list of "things I've tried" all seem, to me at least, to be things you could do that could get yourself fired, rather than laid off. "Fired," of course, meaning that there is no severance package, mediocre or not. Granted, I'm no HR professional, nor do I play one on television, but doing something like surfing for porn on company computers opens the company up to some serious liability for a sexual harassment suit. One inadvertent "Ctrl-P" could print something out, a screen could be left open and someone see it, someone could be looking for a file on your computer and come across a stash, etc. That seems to be the most egregious thing I see on the list. The other items just make you appear to be an ignorant lout.

And offers a possible way out:

Now, if you are looking for the lay off, and think they are coming (we always knew when the date was for layoffs at my previous employer, and most days knew who was affected the Thursday or Friday before the event), one thing a guy could do is go to his boss and just say: "Hey, I get the feeling (or know) that there are layoffs coming, and I know it's a hard decision for you, and I'm really not that happy here anymore. Do us both a favor, and have me on the list."

Brutal honesty? Hmmm...Nah, it'll never work.

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