Some jobs just plain suck. This is especially true when the employer flat-out lies on the application, promising a much better experience than what they can offer. We could all use a little extra money in our pockets, but there’s a limit to the amount of abuse that we can take to make that money. These Redditors have been through exactly the same struggles, and when they couldn’t handle it they stood up for their rights and told their employers, “No.” If you’re stuck in a crappy job, take inspiration from these 42 hero quitters who shared their stories of the fastest times they’ve ever quit a job.
1. Head Math
I got hired at a laser tag place. Come paycheck time the owner looks like he is doing math in his head, then counts out cash from the drawer. I took my “paycheck” and never went back. They didn’t stay open that long.
2. The Old Dough
I didn’t come back for the second shift. My first shift working at a pizza place was terrible. Nobody washed their hands. There were two lots of dough. Old dough for new customers and “good dough” for regulars. We were paid from the till. The manager yelled at us a lot. Oh, also? All the employees there were completely miserable
3. Working at Work
It took about 30 minutes. I was hired at a hotel. When I arrived, I guess there was miscommunication for the job I accepted. I thought the hotel front desk. They meant bellhop. I gave it a go for 30 minutes, wearing the uniform, cleaning out ashtrays, cleaning the trash in the parking lot, etc. After 30 minutes, the manager asked me how I felt about the job. I said, “Nope,” and he said I was free to leave.
The job wasn’t bad but it’s not what I agreed to do. Maybe a bait and switch on me. I found another job a week or two later. Come to think about it, I was never paid for that short 30 or so minutes.
4. Racists Never Win
Two days. I was a cashier for a restaurant when I was 16 and a guy asked for an application. As soon as he left, my manager said, “Go ahead and give them applications, but we don’t hire black people here. Too much of a liability.”
5. Garbage Garbage Man
Working on the back of a garbage truck. I lasted ONE day. Those bags can be heavy, nasty, and full of unspeakable liquids that spill all over you. I was a scrawny kid, six-foot and maybe 140 lbs. It was mid-summer in Texas, so very hot. I smelled like rotten food for days, couldn’t wash it off. I have extreme respect for people that work on the back of those trucks, it’s not easy work.
6. Stop Making Things Easier
One day. I was a data entry temp for the Red Cross and my boss was a control freak. I wrote a batch file script to automate my work and they fired me on the spot accusing me of hacking. Almost 15 years ago.
7. The Late-Show and the No-Show
One guy I worked with at a sandwich shop was a known weirdo—never showered, styled his hair with his own grease—but got a cashier job out of pity. We scheduled him to come in at 8:00 am on his first day. When he finally showed up at 3:00 pm singing, “What’s uuuup?”, the boss swung around the counter with that look on his face, you know, when you suck your lips completely behind your teeth in disgusted frustration. “Get out! You don’t work here anymore!”
Another time, we hired help on Sunday mornings after we let another employee go. The boss-man called her that morning, asking if she was held up in traffic or something. She replies, “Oh no, I’m in Texas for the weekend.” She didn’t last a week.
8. Rolling Paper
Back in the 90s, I worked for a temp agency. I was told the job entailed assisting in an IT department, which happened to be my field. I arrive on said job to learn that the job actually consisted of using a rolling pin to fold reams upon reams of printed computer data that someone had loaded into the printer backward and would no longer fit back into the boxes from which it was fed.
As I was handed the rolling pin, I immediately handed it back and told them I was there for an IT position, not a baking lesson, and left. Total elapsed time: about seven minutes.
9. Waiting Sucks
One week. Waiter job, summertime, hot as heck, no air conditioning, 40 tables to serve. The worst job I ever had, a freaking nightmare.
10. Can’t Tie
10 minutes. As I was walking in for my first day, the manager yells at me to put on my tie, that I should be prepared to work when I walk in. I walk back to the bathroom to put on my tie but as I’m struggling in the mirror trying to figure out how to tie it, I decide forget this. If the manager is going to be this much of a jerk from the start, I don’t need the job that bad. As I walk out of the store, I tell the manager, “I quit.” The stunned look on his face is still with me to this day, 30 years later.
11. Dump Bears? No Thank You
A garbage dump sorting stuff. I don’t know why I never thought about it, but there are bears. Lots of bears. I am way too scared of bears. I didn’t come back after my first day.
12. Wrinkle Hater
A month. I worked at a small pizza place. The owner/manager was incredibly anal about everything. He hated how I did everything. Mind you, I had worked at other pizza restaurants before and this was also my second job. My main job was lead prep chef at a more successful restaurant. I like to think I knew what I was doing.
He just had the weirdest ways of doing things. Because his business was failing (recession of 2006), he was always stressed and always trying to find ways to save money. Including but not limited to: not running the water while washing dishes, reusing older dough, and stretching the definition of fresh for fresh ingredients.
Ultimately, I was young and didn’t really fit his working style. I showed up ONE time with a wrinkled shirt and he told me the next time I did, “Don’t bother showing up.” Which doesn’t make sense, but I got what he was saying. About a month into the job, I wake up, go to the dryer where my work shirt was to discover that the dryer shut off during the night.
Then, I notice that everything electrical is out. I discover in a panic that all of the power was out because my crappy roommate didn’t pay the bill!! Terrible time for that to happen but I had to go to work. I threw on a worn work shirt that was in my hamper that wasn’t messy, but of course, was WRINKLED. I thought I could tell him my story and he would be ok with it this time.
I was very wrong. I show up to work and he gets pissed. He says stuff like, “What did I say?” And, “I thought I said don’t bother showing up?” Here’s the thing—it was an empty threat. I was the only person that worked there besides him and it was Friday. Friday business lunch was the busiest time of the week. He needed me there and I knew it.
But, I realized at that moment that I was done. So I helped him setup for the day. Prepped the dough, made some pre-mades, cut the vegetables and meats, did ALL of the prep work. It’s now 9:55, five minutes before we open. I asked, “Are we all prepped?” He said, “Yes,” and I say, “Great,” take my shirt off, throw it at him, and say, “You can take this shirt and shove it up your butt!”
And then I walk the heck out, shirtless and leaving him on his own for the busiest day of the week. He tried yelling something about telling my boss at my other job but I just got in my car and drove away It was very satisfying! I had to go back in a week later to pick up my final paycheck. He didn’t say anything to me.
I had a gigantic smile on my face.
13. You Know, Just Do It
I quit before even starting. It was a police role supporting victims of crime, I went through all the checks and weeks of training, about how to stay safe on house calls and when entering prisons, but at no point did they actually tell me how to do the job—like the paperwork and how to initiate contact. When I asked for clarification, the supervisor became really rude to me.
I didn’t need the job so I walked.
14. Itching to Quit
I worked four hours into a shift at a fiberglass ceiling tile plant. They offered no dust masks or any kind of protective clothing. I was itching like hell by lunchtime, so I just left and went home. I took several showers a day for weeks before I stopped itching. I got paid for three days, I guess they never realized which day I left and never returned.
15. The Old Pack of Smokes Trick
About four hours. Timeshare call center. On my first break, I said I was going across the street for a pack of smokes. Never went back.
16. Dishwashing Nightmare
Eight hours as a dishwasher at a small-town cafe. I wasn’t technically hired there, they posted a help wanted sign and I could use the extra cash, so we agreed to leave the sign-up and I’d work under the table until they found someone legit. I got in there and the workstation was in the back in this tiny room, small enough that if I could put my palms flat against the walls on either side of the room.
It was just long enough for the washing basins and a power washer that was janky as heck and would spray the steam everywhere. I did dish work in a bakery and could handle the heat, it just wasn’t fun. What really killed it for me was when I went to drain the water, that had no visibility whatsoever, the owner comes running in yelling about how I can’t drain the water.
Like, dude, I can put my hand just under the water and can’t see any of it… that’s the “rinse” basin. We did it his way since I wanted to be paid for the day, got paid, didn’t go back and warned everyone I knew not to eat there either.
17. You Leaving?
One day at some factory that made gauges for medical supplies, I think. I knew that I was screwed when I was walking out to my car to grab my lunch while on break and the supervisor wanted to know where I was going and if I was going to come back.
18. Terrible Boss
One month. I was hired by a small company in my hometown after a few months of unemployment. I went in knowing that the boss was notorious for firing people and that his business had a horrible retention rate. For example, the business was over 30 years old, but the senior-most employee had only been there for three years.
I went in with high hopes, but I soon realized the place was a crap show. The owner loved to micromanage and took it as an insult if anyone was slightly smarter than him. He also had undiagnosed ADHD, since every two minutes I was assigned a new task that was completely unrelated to the previous one. He was constantly bouncing from one thing to another in no logical order.
To top it all off, he couldn’t admit when he was wrong. For the same pay as a Walmart cashier, I was supposed to be in charge of tech support, shipping, and inventory. On my first day, I realized that the majority of his customers were beyond pissed. We sold vital equipment for the disabled, yet there was no ticketing system to keep track of customer’s problems.
There was one poor lady who was without this vital device for over six weeks. In the end, the stress of dealing with neglected customers and a crappy boss was too much, so I took a permanent lunch break.
19. Folding Artist
Fresh out of an art high school, I brought my portfolio in to a local print shop that did typical jobs like fliers, posters, t-shirts, etc. Without even looking at my portfolio, she told me to come in the following Monday to start. Yay, my first creative job! Monday comes and I’m sent to the dark back room, where I’m instructed on folding bi- and tri-fold fliers by a huge 350+ pound guy who looks like he’d just been released from prison.
After setting two huge stacks of many hundreds of fliers in front of me, he says “go” and leaves the room. About 30 minutes later I made up some lame excuse about a family emergency and me being needed at home. I noped the heck out of there and they never heard from me again. I felt pretty bad, but I was so naive and had no clue what I was in for.
20. Must Have Been an Important Phone Call
A few months. I worked for Dollar General. I got threatened with a knife over a damn phone card. Alright, I’m gonna get right out, thanks.
21. Free Vacuum
Selling Kirby vacuums. I went to the first day of training and left after I found out the “sign-on bonus” was just a free vacuum we could keep or sell.
22. Tobacco Hoe
Four hours. Hoed tobacco. Was told there would be lots of people. It was just me and the farmers family. Peace out, pay me 20 bucks, yo.
23. The Burger Incident
I lasted two weeks at Wendy’s. I dropped a triple cheeseburger on the floor just as the district manager walked by; he stepped on it, slipped, and fell. It was like a Three Stooges movie. I was only 17 and was so embarrassed that I just went home and never went back.
24. A Sticky Situation
Two hours. Temp job. Minimum wage. Showed up at zero-dark-thirty at a damn industrial glue factory. Yes, this was already looking good. I was the only employee there in the whole place. I meet my supervisor, and he takes me to the big boss’ office to find out my assignment. “Have him clean strainer #5,” says big boss.
“Ohhh. You’re a harsh man,” says supervisor. Wow. things are really looking up. Strainer #5 is a steel tube about 3.5′ across and 5′ long, closed on one end. The interior is caked with about 1/4″ of dried yellow industrial glue, like hard plastic. I’m given a small pneumatic jackhammer and a pair of gloves, and into the tube I go.
Hammering one spot of the glue for about 30 seconds will flake off about 1-inch of glue. After an hour, my right hand is constantly tingling from the vibration of the jackhammer, like it has fallen asleep. After two, I feel like someone has dropped a cinderblock on it, and then plunged it into a nest of fire ants. I crawled out of the tube, grabbed my time card, punched out.
My supervisor saw me as I walked toward the door and said, “Heeyyyy…uh…where you going?” “Home,” I said, without so much as a glance backward.
25. Marine Vs. Cheese
When I was stationed at Cherry Point, NC, there was a Taco Bell that was right outside the gate. My friend, a fellow Marine, got a job there working evenings. If there is one thing that Marines can do, it’s clean. There was cheese on the prep counter that he couldn’t get off. He worked one shift and never even picked up his check. It was that foul back there.
26. Good for You
An hour and a half. Got the run-around for three weeks where they told me to meet them at a certain time, I’d go, and I’d get told I wasn’t scheduled for a meeting. I wanted a job though, and finally got hired. I was doing onboarding training online and heard my new managers talking—it made my blood run cold. They were crapping on all the other departments like crazy and they were smack-talking their own department by saying it didn’t matter that a lot of people had quit that week and they’d always get refilled.
They were also laughing off safety hazards. I was pretty hard up for work and in a bad mental spot for other reasons so I got my uniforms and went home to think on it rather than act rashly. But I went in the next day and just turned everything I’d gotten in to the front desk, requested that they turn it over to the right department, and said I couldn’t work there.
The front desk lady said, “Good for you!” and I left.
27. Corn Detassler
Corn detasseling the summer after sixth grade. I only stayed for one day of work. I decided that constant paper cuts, mud, sweat, and crappy people weren’t worth minimum wage.
28. Surprise! Mandatory Overtime
Two weeks. A logistics company where the client was Mars candy and Wrigley. Same company. They also own Uncle Ben’s rice. No climate control and you had to ask to use the bathroom. The supervisors would stand up at their little station just watching the cameras. If you went into the lobby for water or to the bathroom, you would hear over the loudspeaker for your lead to go get you.
Also, mandatory overtime, they would tell you at the beginning of an already 10-hour overnight shift. All this for a whopping $10/hr. Boxes of Snickers cases get real heavy after eight hours. It was an interim job while my union papers and background BS was being processed for my current job.
29. Ain’t Working for Free
I signed up for one of those college painter companies one summer. Got there for the first day—not getting paid yet, mind you—and was told I needed to jog door to door to get leads for houses to paint before any of us could even get paid. I told the project leader I was not interested in working and not getting paid and told the other people there that if they were smart they’d move on and get a different job instead of working for an MLM.
30. God Closes a Fryer, Opens a Sink
I was hired to work as a nighttime donut fryer at a local donut shop. I tried to make it through my first night, finally broke about an hour from the end. Ended up turning into a good dishwashing position though, so that’s a plus.
31. Law & Order: Paper Shredders
I was recently working as a temp at a law firm in the Midwest. I have no prior knowledge of law except from watching Law & Order: SVU and other shows like that and my degree is in something completely different and unrelated to law. On day one I was put into a small room with no windows, no clock, just a small table and a chair with boxes upon boxes of leases and other law crap stacked on top of each other.
My job was to go through each and every single box and figure out what was still relevant to the business and what needed to be shredded. If it was relevant I was supposed to file it in alphabetical order with the other ones under the same name. As just a temp I had no freaking clue what I was doing and only cared about being paid.
So that’s the attitude I had and probably shredded a good half of them just because I was bored and threw the other half into random file cabinets all across the building. I finished up my first week there, it was a two-week job, and on the next Monday morning as I was waking up I received an email from the company and the staffing agency. I should’ve seen it coming.
It said that I was never to return to the firm again as I had caused a massive filing error.
32. Steal My Identity, I Dare You
Got an “interview” for a call center. I had driven by it a few times, and it literally just said “CALL CENTER” in all capital letters on the front of this weird building with an all-glass front. I had a bad gut feeling about it, plus on the way there I got into a bus crash. I was inside the bus, no one was harmed. Got there and the absolute greasiest slimy dude was the manager.
The first thing he did was give me an employee information sheet to fill out with only my name, SIN number, and phone number. It was a group interview and we were all immediately forced to begin making calls. He said we were collecting donations for “charities,” which I looked up on my break—they were all bogus. I finished my “interview”, walked away, and never looked back.
Also, I never got so much as an email address from this guy. I couldn’t call the call center or any management at all. No website, no nothing! I was scared about them having my SIN number, but I’m a broke student with no assets, so if they really wanted to help me out and steal my identity and pay off my loans, I’ll take it.
33. You Seen my Gun?
A pizza place. Worked one shift with the owner/GM. He was kind of a dick the whole time and kept bringing up other staff’s sex life. Like outing a driver to me, and talking about another girl’s open relationship. He randomly decided to close the store an hour early because it got slow, I was told that happens often. I couldn’t afford to lose hours because he wants to close on a whim.
What sealed the deal for me was him misplacing his gun. As we were walking out the back door, he stopped and he had to look for his gun first. Then he remembered he left in his car. I called my old job the next day and got back on their schedule.
34. Call Center Blues
During my second year of college, I got a job in a call center. I was one of those insufferable people who calls you, during your dinner hour, to request that you make a donation to your alma mater so we can build a new library or keep the landscaping pretty, some garbage like that. Because the burn out at this job is impossibly high, they always overhire.
This meant when I showed up for my second shift post-training, there weren’t enough work stations. I knew this, so I got there 30 minutes early to secure myself a spot. The manager, knowing it wasn’t my first shift, ended up sending me home so someone who was working their first shift could have my computer. So I came all the way to campus to work, got sent home, didn’t get paid, AND had to reschedule my shift to keep my minimum hours.
Oh, and the job was freaking awful. I didn’t show up to my third shift.
35. Got Some Fly Suspenders, Though
About four hours. When I was about 16, I applied for and landed a job at a local movie theatre with the express intent of stealing the black and red suspenders they used as part of their uniform. I showed up, got my uniform, took my 15-minute break, and just never went back. I’m not super proud of that story, but I’m not ashamed either.
36. My Way or the Highway
10 days. Was hired to sell cars for the main VW dealership, ended up being the showroom slave, doing all the jobs nobody else wanted to do. Speaking with the manager he said it was going to be like this for at least six months. When I asked why this was the case, the boss said, “It’s my way or you can leave,” so I stood up and walked out.
Don’t hire people and make them do a different job!
37. Slave Wages
Technically two weeks, but really it was like 20 minutes. It was summer between 10th and 11th grade. I lived in the suburbs of a big city and this particular area had many well to do families that had a lot of expendable income. Mine did not, hence job search. There was an “elitist” daycare that was looking for summer junior counselors.
So, I applied and got chosen to go through the interview process, met the kids, got an offer on the same day. It was a Monday to Friday 8-5 job, and I was stoked to finally get a paycheck. I go in two weeks later for orientation and to do mandatory training. In the introductory meeting, the director of the program asks if I have any questions.
So I asked about my salary and the payment arrangement—biweekly or weekly—and she got very stiff and told me that I’d be getting a lump sum payment at the end of the summer in the amount of $400. Biggest awkward pause I’ve ever had in my life. I could feel my heartbeat in my ears. This lady was expecting me to work 40+ hours a week, with young children, all summer, for $400.
Not even minimum wage. I was young and naive, but I wasn’t about to waste my summer dealing with children for pennies. I finally blinked my way back into the conversation and apologized for wasting her time, but I was not going to be able to accept the position anymore. She argued that I misled her and that she turned down other applicants and I was being selfish, and that the parents of the children that are enrolled are quite generous with parting gifts.
I remember scoffing at that and said that I didn’t want a gift, I wanted a fair paycheck, and that I wasn’t being selfish I was being smart because it isn’t right for me to work for someone who thought paying me about $1 a day was fair. My friend got the job instead, and when I asked her about it at the end of the summer she told me that some of the parents bought gift cards for her and the staff.
So in the end she wound up making $500. Total. For an entire summer. Really dodged a bullet there.
38. Pretend You’re Constructing
Four hours. I was a student at the time and was hired by a temp agency for a summer job. According to the job description, I was supposed to do car preparation for a major brand. In this location, there was one person in charge of receiving brand new cars, and preparing them before the delivery to the customer (final cleaning, checking the levels, put some gas in, etc.).
But when I arrived, the manager told me that I was to go outside and clean an area next to the store. This area was supposed to be the location for an expansion of the branch. As the construction permit was already open, they needed to prove that some activity was going on. But as the construction had not started yet, they hired temps just to be there, and pretend something was happening.
So my job was to be there, outside, without any personal protective equipment nor suitable clothing—remember, I thought I would be inside cleaning car interiors—and pretend to clean the site. This was a long drive from home, it was a summer job, I did not need the money, so I just told them I would not come back from my lunch break.
The temp agency really did not know that the job description was wrong.
39. Never Work With Robots
Not really fast, but worked for a company that sets up those robot arms in production lines for car manufacturers. I’m a coder but also had to mechanically install that thing and wire it all up (with coworkers), THEN do the coding/teaching, and then watch them to see if everything is still fine. So far sounds like an okay job, but this was after a 70-hour week, AKA 10 hours/a day Mon-Sun, and I simply asked at the last day for a few hours off for sleep.
Nope, got denied. So I noped out of there fast and quit the same day where I was standing at the line. He didn’t believe me but had to let me go. This was like 700km away from home and I had the rest of the day to enjoy the train trip home. A few months later, I read something utterly disturbing about the company in the newspaper. A co-worker got killed because another fell asleep due to overworking and crushed him against a wall with a Robo-arm.
Well, good thing I left.
I worked as an internal audit intern for a local municipality. I was 20 years old and hadn’t even taken an audit class yet. After a few weeks, I realized quickly that I was underqualified for the job. However, I still tried to learn and work my tail off.
I noticed there were some issues with the policies and procedures in place. For example, missing money and weak controls. Anytime I brought it up, the manager would sweep it under the rug and ignore it.
Long story short, I had a huge argument with her and she let me go.
Three months later, the FBI show up at my door. They asked me a few questions about my old manager. Turns out she conspired with the mayor to accept donations in exchange for certain actions. Not sure what those actions were. Either way, she got fired and got charged, along with ten other city officials.
41. Mic Drop
I worked in a bar with an awful boss. He would always flirt with the young female bar staff and make us all uncomfortable, even though he was 50 years old. We all knew his wife and two young children, but about six months into me working there he began to “date” a 22-year-old customer.
By date, I mean he used to go downstairs to his office and sleep with her—all while he was on shift. No one was allowed to talk about it but we all knew. He knocked her up quite quickly and ended up breaking up with his wife, but he still flirted with his staff relentlessly even when his new baby was born.
He once told a male employee that he liked asking female bar staff to pick up things from low shelves so we would bend over and he could check out our butts.
He always broke health and safety rules if he could get out of doing a task he didn’t want to. He was prolific at asking bar staff to clean human waste—vomit/poop customers had done on the floor—even though legally anyone cleaning that stuff needed to have passed a certain health and safety qualification. I spoke to my assistant manager about this and she confirmed that only management can do it, and I should refuse next time.
One day he demanded I cleaned up vomit in the male toilets, and I refused, repeating what the assistant manager told me. My boss went absolutely mad—he wasn’t used to people standing up to him. He told me to come downstairs to his office to speak about it.
At that moment I knew I wanted to quit, so I told him I won’t be going downstairs with him. He asked me why, and I replied: “The last girl who went down there with you ended up getting pregnant.”
Lost my job instantly but it was totally worth it.