It feels like we spend almost our entire lives at work, so a few crazy stories are bound to happen now and then. From terrible bosses, to coworkers getting fired, to secrets nobody is supposed to know, the workplace can be witness to countless outrageous moments—here’s some of the best the internet has to offer.
1. She Has Her Pros and Cons
I was head of HR for an answering service company at one point in my life. Staff turnover was atrocious and most of the resumes that came through were from people that had zero job history or were chronic job hoppers. Imagine my surprise when Renee’s resume crossed my desk. With the exception of a ten year gap on her resume, she appeared to be an ideal candidate.
And then I found the articles from a newspaper about two hours away. That ten year gap? Serving time for kidnapping and murder…with an axe. A freaking axe murderer. I hired her and as far as I know, she’s still there. Model employee. Strong work ethic. Positive attitude. 10/10. Would hire an axe murderer again.
2. Doctor’s Orders
I once called in sick to my part-time job at a clothing store. My manager told me that if I couldn’t find anyone to cover my shift, I was going to be fired. So I FaceTimed her from the ER and had the doctor explain to her that I needed an MRI because they wanted to make sure I didn’t have a brain tumor. I wasn’t fired.
3. Not That Dire…
I know that our company president still took his annual raise last year, despite the rest of the company having had a salary/wage increase freeze for over two years due to our “dire financial issues.” He now makes over a million a year. There are only 30 employees in the company.
4. Work-Life Imbalance
I worked at a cancer nonprofit. We hired a lady who knew about us because her kid had cancer. At one point, my boss wanted me to fire her because she had to come in late or leave early to take her kid to chemo. I refused. Boss said she’d fire me if I didn’t. I told her she could go right ahead. Our CEO said no way.
5. In Plain Sight
The employee stole money out of a customer’s bag. While the customer was watching. While on like three different cameras. She was removed by police, and our senior-most manager on duty went to the police station to fire her directly from there.
6. Falling Like Dominoes
I reported a coworker for harassing a minor. My manager fired me for making the accusation against her friend. She got fired, and then the district manager got fired when he too was caught in a bathroom with a minor.
7. Her Bark Was Far Bigger Than Her Bite
Everything looked good on her resume, she was very professional and enthusiastic in her interview and just had that… thing. That self-starter attitude that made you feel like “this girl is going to get it done.” Wellll… I ran a background check and literally nothing checked out. She was not actually licensed in her field like she claimed and she had about a dozen priors for various white-collar crimes and none of her work history or references checked out. I guess she was just hoping that her charisma would win us over and that we wouldn’t bother checking up on her.
8. This is Not What I Signed Up For
I worked at a fast food chain as a teenager. One day, the assistant manager—who illegally brought her teenage daughter to work to help her out—asked me to clean the restrooms. It wasn’t my normal job but I didn’t mind. I had a good attitude about it and prepared to go clean the bathrooms. I walked into the men’s room and discovered that the reason she asked me to do it was that someone took a dump all over the bathroom.
Smeared fecal matter was all over the walls, the sink, the floor, the outside of the toilet—everywhere. The toilet was clogged and covered in used toilet paper. It was a complete disaster. I walked out of the bathroom, went back to the kitchen, and told the assistant manager, “I’m not cleaning that. You can fire me but I’m not cleaning it.” She sighed heavily and went and got a mop.
9. Knowledge is Power
My boss likes to pretend he’s only making $100K-$200K a year so that the low-level employees don’t ask for more. Meanwhile, he actually makes more than $6M annually. I make more than everyone solely thanks to the fact that I run the books and know how much he actually makes, so I have the leverage to ask for more.
10. If You Don’t Have Your Principles, What Do You Have?
Went into a business meeting for the ice cream shop I managed. I was told that the girl who was seven months pregnant needed to be written up as much as possible so they could have a legal reason to fire her. I told them it wasn’t going to happen and they suggested that I put in my two weeks and find other work. So I did.
Then I was told that I was going to be gone in two weeks and might as well just fire her. There was no way in hell I would do that. I walked into that meeting with a 50 hour a week, decent paying job, and left with nothing but my integrity. I then proceeded to drive to my store, pull the girl aside and let her know what was going on. Last I checked I believe she manages the store now.
11. Pulling His Way Out
Pulled down a male coworker’s pants in the office, during business hours, while said coworker was talking to two female peers. The poor guy wasn’t wearing underwear. The pants-puller was escorted out of the office within that hour. We were all in our 30s and this was at a publicly-traded multinational.
12. Memory Trouble Can Happen to the Best of Us
One of my girlfriends dated a guy who had killed someone outside of the US. He just told potential employers that he “couldn’t remember” his address when he was living abroad and so he’s been passing background checks with no problems. So employees of a large overpriced electronics store, some of you are working with a murderer who did time in an international prison. At least one, anyway.
13. Loyal to the Bitter End
My dog became very ill quite suddenly and needed to be put down. I was at work and I asked to leave half an hour early so I could be there for him. I asked my manager and she got annoyed. She said there was “no way” and that I should have told her earlier. I said, “I’m sorry, I didn’t realize my dog was going to die,” in the most sarcastic way possible, then walked away knowing she’d follow me. I then stood at my desk and began typing my resignation up in front of her. She gave me the time off. No one was going to stop me from being there for my boy.
14. You Needed Me
I work for a company that fixes people’s computer problems. The big secret is that 95% of the time, we just Google the problem and don’t actually have any special skills. Instead of paying us $100 to fix your computer, you could most likely Google the issue yourself and resolve it within the next ten minutes, almost always.
15. Living Life to the Fullest
I was working as a CNA (Certified Nurses Aide) back in the early ‘90s & I liked to have fun with the residents. One day, my administrator found me in a hall wheelchair racing with several other elderly participants who were intent on kicking my butt! I was fired on the spot, citing safety issues. Phhhfff. Whatever dude.
16. Intercom Mistakes
An employee got drunk, called a friend to complain about her boss, and didn’t realize she was on the intercom and not on a private phone call. The boss was me. I fired her immediately. Awful day.
17. Sounds Like an Absolutely Delightful Fellow
This kid, early 20s comes in for a job, seemed normal enough. Google him and he was wanted in another state for stabbing a St. Bernard to death.
18. Shifting Things Around
I put in my two weeks notice at my wildly understaffed job. Six days later, I got sick. I called around to see if anyone could take my shift. No one was available. I tried to call out that morning. The manager tried to persuade me to come in even though I was barfing everywhere. I noncommittally agreed to call back later in the day to see if I might be feeling up to coming in anyway.
I called back and told her I am still sick and will not be coming in. She blew up at me in front of customers, and was extremely rude. She eventually asked what I expect to do about the shift that needed to be covered. I said that I had done everything I was required to do and that it sounded like a management problem to me. I hung up and turned my phone off.
19. Income Info Inequality
Once, instead of receiving my paycheck, I accidentally received a file containing every paycheck for everybody in the company. Thus, I knew how much money everybody was making, what benefits they had, etc. For the record, this included the CEO and upper management.
20. The Big Sleep
I was working a full-time job and three part-time jobs. I worked every day and on the weekends I would work nights. I rarely slept and this went on for six months. One of the jobs was for a well-known lotion and scents store. The pay and hours really didn’t make a difference but I enjoyed working there. My manager was going out of town and was leaving a new supervisor in charge who I hadn’t gotten to know all too well, and he did not like me for some reason.
Well, the stars aligned and I got a weekend off, except for a morning shift with them. My manager had offered me the day off before she left, but me knowing it would leave her shorthanded, I declined. She told me that if I overslept or was late, it was ok, due to how much I’ve been working. So I go home that night and crash out hard.
The feeling of my bed was the greatest thing ever. I set my alarms and out I went. I woke up over 30 hours later not realizing I had slept through my shift until I saw the voicemail on my phone. The new supervisor had “fired” me and put me down as a no call no show, which was rightfully so. I called the store and he refused to talk to me. So I called the manager and told her what happened. She said it was fine and would take care of it and to come in for my next scheduled shift.
Well, long story short, this little jerk of a supervisor had already submitted my termination files to corporate and classified me as a no rehire. My manager was pissed and fired him shortly afterward. The sleep was the best I had had in years and is still on my top 10 sleeps. Totally worth getting labeled as a no rehire.
21. Just Sickening
I worked at a hospital for children and came in one morning to find the security guard, who was one of my work buddies, waiting for me at my desk (I worked really early in the morning at either 5am or 6am). He was kind of shaken up and it took some coaxing to get him to tell me what was wrong. Apparently, this old guy who worked overnight at the switchboard operator desk, who I always thought was really nice since we’d sometimes cross over by an hour or two and would just chat about the world, had been caught by the security guard looking up very inappropriate material on the work computer.
Keep in mind we worked at a hospital for children, not that it is okay in any other scenario, but it was particularly frightening to know that this guy had access to patient areas and was surrounded by kids all day, some of whom did not have the cognitive capacity of normally functioning kids and tend to be targeted more frequently by those with nefarious motives. Also, as if that wasn’t bad enough, apparently it had a strong element of BDSM as well. I had to cover the switchboard that morning when HR called him in. I never saw the old guy again and my security guard buddy had to speak with a bunch of people to verify (along with the IT department) what he had seen.
22. Was An Evening of Weird Fun Worth the Job Opportunity?
Had a guy apply for an entry-level post with us recently. His CV was okay, so we offered him an interview. Social media seemed okay too. He never turned up for the interview. A couple of weeks later, there’s a story about him in the local paper. Turned out that he was living at the local boarding house, and was found in the kitchen one morning totally wasted, wearing nothing but a pair of socks.
When a couple of women who also lived there tried to escort him back to his room, he got violent and assaulted them. Given the dates stated in the paper, he didn’t turn up because he’d been in jail at the time of the interview. His resume has now been added to the “do not touch with a ten foot barge pole” section in our filing cabinet.
23. I Love the Nightlife
Important note: My usual job was 3 AM to noon and I would sleep from 5 PM to 1 AM. A split shift meant working 4:30 AM to 8 AM and coming back from 7 PM to 11:30 PM. I had been working a series of split shifts and the wacky sleep schedule was really getting to me. I was told I would only need to do it three days in a row, but then it became four days. Then finally, I went to sleep after the fourth shift and got woken up to my boss calling me and telling me I would have to work one more split shift. I told him “No” and that I would only come in for my usual schedule.
He started to argue with me. He asked why it was a big deal and why I couldn’t just do it for one more day. When I explained that I was having issues with sleep and that I couldn’t come in, he said “But it’s your job! I am scheduling you for another split shift.” And I just yelled at him, “Then I don’t need this job!” He started apologizing and said that he would let me get some sleep. I hung up.
I went to work the next morning for my usual shift and everyone there was surprised to see me. My boss had told everyone that he thought I might not show up at all and wasn’t sure if I had quit. I worked my usual shift, my boss came in at 8 AM, and began apologizing right away when he saw me. Then he said, “If working a split was so hard on you, you could have just told me no!” I just turned away and went off to lunch.
24. Don’t Get Seasick When You Read This One…
The chiefs on my ship and others in our home port are being investigated for wife swapping. This may sound harmless, but adultery, even when mutually agreed upon, is technically illegal in the military, so it was therefore always kept as a big secret amongst them.
25. Sweet Revenge
I worked at a liquor store for two and a half years, owned by this guy and his family. Got to learn a lot about alcohol, meet lots of people in my neighborhood, and form a great bond with my customers and coworkers alike. I tell my boss when I begin work that I have lupus and that it means I could end up with a flare sometime in the future.
Fast forward two and a half years, I end up with some obscure infection in my esophagus and stomach where I lose roughly 70 or so pounds and have fevers, night sweats, and awful arthritic pain. My coworkers see this and support me every step of the way, giving me register work instead of lifting boxes and things while I waited for my doc to give me my results.
I got called into the hospital to stay a few nights and told my boss that I needed a week to get pumped full of steroids, and then I’d be back to work better than ever. I get back and they move my schedule from five days a week to one day because I was “unreliable.” I throw a fit because I feel pretty betrayed and it was just not at all how our discourse went prior to that. He told me he would have to look for someone new soon.
I got the message. So I helped one of my coworkers look for an accounting position at a nice place while he was getting his accounting degree and my other coworker we helped file and manage to help him do his CDL license application and test (English second language). Both coworkers find fantastic jobs compared to the store and we all call out for the week at the same time and after a freak out from management, we all just quit. They sold the store shortly afterward and I consulted the new owners who hooked me up with a nice lifetime discount.
26. More Than Just Drinking On The Job
I actually had to fire an employee on the spot after he returned from his lunch break 30 minutes late and was drunk. I suspect he was high as well but the overpowering smell of alcohol really gave it away. He was on a ladder attempting to put up a shelf when an employee brought him to my attention. When I went to confront him about coming back to work late AND showing up drunk, he dropped the very heavy shelf on my head. FIRED. GET OUT.
27. A Day at the Lake
I worked for a newspaper and they hired a new director for my department. About a year after I left the company, the newspaper’s reporters were writing a story about this guy because he was trying to open a coffee shop. The reporters found out that he had murdered his girlfriend and dumped her body in Lake Michigan, then went to prison for it. The company never did a background check on him. He got fired.
28. You Can Run, but You Can’t Hide
The owner of my company was avoiding the meeting where I would get my raise. I waited over two weeks. Finally, I told my supervisors that I’m walking out the door if they don’t fix this. They told me to go talk to him. I told them they were the supervisors and it was their job to do that, not mine. I’m in an understaffed position at a job that is very difficult to fill. If I left, the rest would have gone too. They knew that.
29. Just in Time
My company was doing badly during the 2008 recession. They hired an expensive new Vice President to lead our division who asked me barely one month in to sack any two people of my choice from my team of software engineers because she thought we had too many. I steadfastly refused and dared her to fire me instead, and the issue really blew up at the time. Before they could fire any of us, though, a new contract came along which needed more people to execute than we even had on our rolls. The VP got fired a few months later as she was way too expensive and wasn’t adding enough value.
30. Til Work Do Us Part
I know that my boss is sleeping with the head of HR. They’re both married—and not to each other. Pretty sure I’m not supposed to know this…
31. Sneaky Tricks
I was the victim of what they call “dynamic tension.” That’s when they intentionally give you ten hours worth of work to do in an eight-hour shift and work you like a dog hoping you’ll somehow manage to fit the equivalent of nine hours of work into your eight-hour shift. They then eventually let you go since you aren’t meeting targets, despite having given them more value than the time they’ve paid you for. It’s a messed up model but more common than you think. Glad I don’t work in a place like that anymore…
32. Trash Delivery
I was the manager of a pizza place while in College and had to fire one of my delivery drivers on the spot. A lady came in with a grocery bag full of trash, including many of our receipts. Told us that the delivery guy dumped it out from his car onto her lawn. I comped her some things and told her I would take care of it. I confronted the guy when he got back from his deliveries and asked him if it was true. Conversation went a little like this:
Me: “Hey man, we had a lady come in with a bunch of trash and said you dumped it on her lawn. Is that true?”
Me: “Was she mean? Did she not tip you or something? What happened?”
Him: “No, my car was just dirty.”
Me: ………”so you just emptied all of your trash into her yard?”
Him: *shrug* “yeah”
Me: “Dude? What the heck? I can’t even comprehend why you would think that was ok, even if she didn’t tip you. The fact that you just did it ’cause your car was dirty’ is even more insane. I can’t have an employee with that little judgment. Hand me your money so I can count you out. You’re fired.”
33. Well I’m Glad to Hear You Finally Learned Your Lesson
I hired a girl, she interviewed well. First day she threw up some red flags, but I figured I was misjudging or misinterpreting. People start missing money and one of my belongings disappears, which had never happened prior to her hiring… She was also insulting everyone and making customers uncomfortable and I wanted her gone (less than four full weeks from her start date) but didn’t want to pay unemployment. Finally we do a search—arrest records in multiple states involving domestic violence and theft. She ended up saying she could “just rape” one of my barely legal employees so I fired her for sexual harassment. Lesson learned: CHECK EVERYONE OUT NO MATTER HOW WELL THEY INTERVIEW!
34. New Year’s Resolution
When I was 17, I worked a summer holiday job at a chain restaurant. I had been there for five weeks already and hadn’t been paid yet. The boss claimed it was because I gave him the wrong employee number. I hadn’t. Anyway, after five weeks of no pay, I rang him on New Year’s Eve—i.e. the busiest night of the summer in New Zealand—and said I wasn’t coming to work because I wasn’t a volunteer and wasn’t going to work for free.
He told me if I didn’t come in, I may as well not come back as I would be fired. I didn’t go to work and had a fun New Year’s instead. Then, a few days later, I called the Employment Tribunal and told them what had happened. They called my boss. He then called me, offered me my job back and was nice as pie for the rest of the summer.
35. Heart and Sole
I know that the shoe store I used to work at covered up problems with their faulty shoes in order to sell more. We were encouraged to sell shoes that they knew were faulty, and to not tell the customer about the problem if they didn’t see it themselves. And then we were instructed to play dumb if they came back for a refund or complaint. It was really immoral and all. I remember serving a pair of shoes to the nicest guy on his 16th birthday, who was there spending his birthday money on this. I knew they had a fault and decided to inform him of it. My manager was not impressed. Glad I don’t work in a place like that anymore…
36. Show Time!
My ex-manager here at the cinema got fired over “budgetary reasons.” In other words, “We don’t like your face because you won’t bend over when we tell you to, wage-slave.” This was also just after he got cancer and had to take days off for treatment. Happened right around Christmas too. While he was working with us, he never really took vacations or days off, and didn’t even claim the extra hours he’d work here, fixing cameras, projectors, computers, databases, etc. When I see him nowadays, he looks way better, less stressed out and happier. Works with helping old people now in his free time and coaching kids in volleyball. I think losing that job was the best thing that could ever have happened to him.
37. Cell Phone Games
I worked as a temp in IT at a nurse’s college, and the ground floor was the student loan department. My coworker found an iPhone in one of the student bathrooms upstairs during lunch and subsequently just put it in her desk. A few hours later, the owner came to us (for some reason Lost and Found was in the IT office), reported it missing, and said that she had accidentally left in the women’s room after calling her boyfriend.
My boss found the phone by simply calling the number (it had a unique ringtone, of course). Department head walked in my coworker’s office, opened the drawer and confirmed it was the missing phone, and fired her in the middle of a conference with a student. I overheard him say, “if you can’t do the right thing in a simple situation like this, how can I trust you to do your job ethically?”
To clarify: Since she HAD to walk past the Lost and Found to get back to her office, it seems likely she intended to keep the phone. Also, instead of saying she would return it, when confronted she used the old chestnut, “if they wanted it, they wouldn’t have left it there.” There had been other minor thefts of personal belongings in the building previously, and they stopped after she left. I believe they had been suspicious of her for awhile.
38. Let’s Pull Out the World’s Smallest Violin
I was hiring for our late night shift (shifts ending at 2am/3am) and she was willing to work anything and looking for about 25 hours per week. This was absolutely what the company was looking for. She had mentioned that she was “grieving for her little boy who passed two weeks ago and needed to do something to occupy her time.” She finished her one day of computer training and stopped showing up. Later in the week she sent me an email stating that she “wasn’t ready to come back to work like she’d thought,” which was understandable.
My assistant manager and I decided to look her up only to find that she had multiple GoFundMe pages set up for her sob story with different amounts of time that the supposed child had been dead for. Her facebook was full of selfies and party photos.
She ended up asking for the job back a few months later and we shot her down pretty quick. I’ve recently googled her name and found that all the GoFundMe pages have been taken down and her social media profiles deleted/privatized.
39. No Mercy
There was one guy who messed something up and needed to be fired—but it was his first day back after being out for his child’s birth. Naturally, no one expected me to actually go through with it. But I did.
40. I’ll Stick to Coffee
I know that our CEO secretly does coke before public speaking—and I don’t mean Diet or Zero.
41. Dessert Time!
Not me, but someone in my class. He wanted out of his apprenticeship, so he walked into one of the giant coolers the store had, sat down inside, and began to eat a fully finished, fully paid for, expensive wedding cake, waiting for someone else to enter the cooler and discover him.
42. Caught In The Act
Worked at Staples. The (ex) employee was putting a Galaxy s3 tablet into his pocket in the back room. I was around the corner and the manager was very quick to tell him he’s fired and he will be calling the cops. The (ex) employee said he was just going to leave before the police showed up. The manager reminded him he has his address and information from the hiring process. He proceeded to cry.
43. Pending Disaster
Where I work they hired a guy who was great at the job and a nice, quiet employee. His background check took forever to clear for “some reason” but it ultimately came back clean. Eventually he said he needed to take a day off for court, but he just never came back after that day. Upon looking into it, he had been found guilty of sexual misconduct with a minor (two counts). That must have been why it took so long to come back, they were unsure if it should be reported since it was pending… sigh.
44. It’s Not Me, It’s You
I used to manage restaurants a long time ago. It was awesome. Tons of fun. I then hired my girlfriend at the time. Later on, she just stopped showing up to work. She basically thought that I would just let it go and not do anything because I didn’t want to have her break up with me. I had to fire her. Ouch, that was rough. This story hurts to even think about.
45. Don’t Have a Cow, Man
I’m a cook for one of the food courts at a major university and we have a food section that is run by a very well known franchise restaurant that serves burgers, pancakes, wraps, and milkshakes. I found out recently that the veggie burger that we were told was 100% vegetarian and which we had been advertising as such actually contains beef.
46. Got Out Just in Time
I was working in a small accounting firm making less than minimum wage. The boss was exploiting the fact that people like me were desperate to get their foot in the door of accounting, as it is very competitive in Australia. One day I was stupidly posting on a forum about my situation and looking for advice. The boss found out and fired me on the spot.
Feeling pretty spiteful about the whole thing, I reported my situation to fair work ombudsman Australia. A month later, I got payment for the amount I should have been making at minimum wage for the six months I was there. About a month after that, I landed a much better role at a large company making almost double what I was making previously. The icing on the cake is that the firm ended up getting investigated by fair work and I can only assume they received a hefty fine because they are no longer in business.
47. Finally Giving An Excuse To Be Fired
I was working as a baggage handler (Ramp Agent is the real job title, FYI), and they’d hired a guy whom everyone hated. He was lazy, stupid, and annoying. One of the big rules when working around airplanes is you don’t go anywhere near the engines while they’re still running. They’ll suck you right in and cut you into a million little pieces in 1 second.
They put the fear of God into you about this during training, well before you get near an airplane. Once a plane pulls into the gate, you wait until you have confirmation that the engine has been turned off before you approach it. If you’re not sure, you don’t approach the plane. Well one day a plane pulls up to the gate, and he walks right up to the engine while it’s still running.
People are yelling, his vest is flapping like crazy, but he’s so aloof he doesn’t notice. Someone runs up to him and yanks him back to a safe distance. They had already been building up a case to fire him, but that made it a lot easier. The supervisor walked him into the manager’s office, and he was fired right away. We all rejoiced.
48. An Impressive Journey
I heard we’d hired a new guy and so I looked him up on LinkedIn. Turns out he was just leaving a job where my father-in-law worked. I sent Pops a text and asked him about the new hire and opinions on him, and didn’t get an answer. When I went for dinner the following weekend, I asked again. Turns out this new hire said he was leaving his former job to go and take care of his ailing mother in Africa.
His former company said to not worry about it. Take an unpaid leave, and come back when you can, however long it takes. I went in on Monday and told my boss. He didn’t fire him immediately, but when he didn’t perform well in his job after a couple of months, he got canned…And then proceeded to go back to his former company and tell them he was back from Africa. They did not rehire him.
49. Side Projects
The guy who was fired from the police department because he extorted sex in exchange for pushing applications through for the Police Academy.
50. Tailgate Technology
I know that my boss stores cases of beer in the server room for our computers because the temperature is always kept consistently cool in there.
51. Your Job or Your Grandma’s Life? You Decide…
I was working at a pizza place at the time, and was probably my second month or so when this occurred. About an hour before my shift starts, my mom calls and says my grandma fell down the stairs and is at the hospital. They need me to go home right away since she works farther away and I can get to her first. I call work to tell them I can’t come in, and my boss said if I don’t come in, I’ll be fired. I say ok and hang up. A few hours later I get a voicemail saying I’ve been let go from my job. Totally worth it to make it to my grandma to check on her.
52. Piss Poor Burger
A guy started his first shift at a pizza place I used to work at. He said when he worked at Hardee’s if someone came in who he didn’t like, he would piss on the grill then cook their burger. Owner overheard this and fired him.
53. It’s a Small World After All
I was the intern responsible for checking references and running backgrounds at our company and this was in my first week where I was just learning how to go about things. This guy did great in the interview so I got the go-ahead to run a background check and call his references. Something popped up in his background so I had to call the police station to figure out how to get a copy of the police report since whatever happened had just happened. I talked to someone on the phone and gave them his name and who I was and what I was calling for. After doing so, whoever I was talking to didn’t know how to go about obtaining the information on her end.
She put me on a brief hold then took a call back number and promised to call me back with some info. Well, it’s a good thing neither of us knew what to do because I received a call from the police department less than an hour later. An officer told me “I’m really not supposed to be doing this but I just wanted to let you know that interview guy had been arrested for carjacking a woman and that woman works at your company.” He saw the company name and the guy’s name and warned us. I’m so grateful too.
54. Smell Ya Later
There is someone in my office who is great at their job, wonderful with people, a fantastic work friend, never complains, and always comes on time—but smells like they haven’t showered in months. Despite several professional mentions of the issue and complaints from peers, they have decided that they won’t do anything about it because they know how valuable they are to the company.
55. Who’s Your Daddy?
I know that my boss has been secretly having an affair with his married secretary for many years and that the secretary’s first kid—now 14 years old—is actually my boss’s biological child. It’s a big secret, no one is allowed to know—ever. My boss is also married with kids of his own, by the way.
56. Reverse Ambulance Chasers
I worked at a place in Ontario. I was the chef. The year before I was hired, they’d left the place a mess and violated health code to the point where they had been cited. I was working uphill against that and a crazy owner who would rather act like she was 21 than run her business properly. On a July evening, someone stuck a hot, dirty, sauté pan into my stack of cool clean pans. I wrapped my hand around it and, man, that was an intense level of pain! I literally had to peel the pan from my hand.
The crazy owner wouldn’t let me call an ambulance because it would be bad for business. They insisted I run service from the other side of the line instead. I took a few days’ medical leave after that, all the while fielding harassing phone calls from the boss about how I was letting them down. This place was awful and I’d had no staff for weeks because, again, ownership ran them off. I handed in my notice and was promptly escorted off the property. It was gratifying to watch their reviews sink after that. Food going out cold. Moldy mushroom burgers. That’s karma.
57. Taking Order
I worked in a doctor’s office and we had a maternity leave that was being covered by help. Well, one person who came to help cover the office had been passed from office to office because she couldn’t do anything right, she couldn’t take a patient back in under 20 minutes, she couldn’t file paperwork, it was just bad.
So she arrives at our office and we put her answering phone calls, she answered the phone, “This is doctor X’s office, can I take your order.” My manager lost it and told her to leave and never come back. Worst part, she called the boss and asked for a new assignment, he had to repeat three times that she was fired and there was no new assignment. She genuinely did not understand what “you’re fired” meant.
58. History Repeats Itself
I was a restaurant manager and the owner hired this guy as a chef without doing basic research (which he did a few times). Anyways, the guy said he had won several awards and worked with celebrities, etc. The guy was a total jerk to everyone on staff. I decided to google him. First hit is a mugshot from a drug arrest.
Then more articles, one about where he lied about getting a James Beard Award from a previous restaurant he worked at. A comment about him owing $25,000 or something to his former boss. The only positive restaurant review he had was from 1990. I came in after the weekend to show my boss this stuff, when I learn he was fired the night before for exposing himself to one of the waitresses.
59. The Right to Bear Insanity
We had a guy who made a big deal about his “right” to carry a loaded gun everywhere he went. He was even once on the local news for carrying a non-concealed pistol into a bank just to “make a point.” Firing him had nothing to do with his Second Amendment opinions—he was just unstable on many, many levels. When we said it was not appropriate to bring a gun to the office, he basically dared us to fire him, claiming it was his constitutional right to do so. So we did fire him. After we fired him, he came back into work—gun, as always, on his hip—and simply went back to working as if nothing had ever happened. We had to call the cops.
60. Side Interest
My boss is secretly a competitive ballroom dancer, but he’s too embarrassed to tell anyone. I found out when my girlfriend and I took a beginner course and he was in the studio working on a routine. I got sworn to secrecy, but I think it’s super cool and interesting.
61. Food Fight
I waited tables at a restaurant/bar and this drunk chick tried to chuck a hot fajitas skillet at me with no success. I then threw her drink right back at her and the guy sitting with her in retaliation. This resulted in the termination of my employment. I kinda felt bad because the guy seemed nice, but sometimes there are casualties in war.
62. Don’t Bite The Hand That Feeds
God, she was a piece of work. Never worked. Called out 2 weekends in a row lying about broken legs or her car not starting. Lied to get other employees in trouble for her mess ups. Bragged about how much work she got out of to the owner’s son, who also worked there. We couldn’t convince the GM to fire this lazy little girl. He had a soft spot for her.
Finally someone showed the GM a Facebook post she made public absolutely trash-talking him, the only person at work who didn’t hate her guts, and lying about how much she works and how the entire store is incompetent except her. He wrote her up for poor conduct, unexcused call outs, etc. She refused to sign the write up because she said she was right that he was worthless and he fired her right there. It was like a 160 lb weight got lifted off of everyone there. 90% of the staff was looking for new jobs. She was a walking toxic cloud.
63. There’s Always More to the Story
Had a guy come in to apply for a dump truck job, seemed ok, very well spoken, clean cut, not the type you usually see applying for a job driving a dump truck. He told me he had a phd in Psychology, had his own DWI/addiction counseling business but his wife divorced him and he lost everything. So I googled him, he wasn’t lying, but the story goes much deeper…
Turns out his wife was cheating on him, when he found out where the boyfriend lived he snorted almost enough coke to give himself a heart attack and went to his house, where his wife’s car was parked. He shot 30 rounds from an AR-15 into the house and the car with them inside the house! Somehow he got off with only six months in jail and probation. He didn’t get the job.
64. I Think They Learned Their Lesson
When working as a teacher, I told a classroom full of bratty freshmen to “Shut the hell up.” One of them told on me and the administrator came to fire me shortly after. It was worth it.
65. Mine! Mine! Mine!
Someone had been stealing things from everyone’s desks in our office. I set up a teddy cam on someone’s desk (with their permission) to find out who was doing it. Turns out it was the owner of the company. I confronted him about it in private. Over the course of two to three months, the majority of things then started reappearing and the stealing came to a stop from then on. At least for the most part—occasionally something would still go missing, but it wasn’t anywhere near as often or severe as before.
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.
67. Not Counting The Candles On The Cake
Server at an Italian restaurant. A coworker tried hitting on a guest who was celebrating her 14th birthday with her entire family. Her friends were telling him not to try anything, but he still asked for her number and her mom overheard everything. The mother quickly informed our GM who confronted the server and fired him on the spot. About a year or so later he tried asking for his job back. To clear things up a bit, you couldn’t serve if you were under 18, but if I remember correctly he was around 20/21 years old when he pulled this stunt.
68. Having the FBI Involved Is Always a Good Sign
We had hired a new entry-level graphic designer. Let’s call him Will. He had talent and a decent portfolio, but there were some strange things right from the beginning. For example he would always come in wearing expensive suits, despite our being a jeans-and-t-shirt office, and his having a very low-paid position. We didn’t care much about that. No clue how he affords that wardrobe, but that’s none of our business.
He’s a designer, and I guess he likes to look nice. The weirdest thing was that he adamantly refused to accept direct deposit for his paycheck. He wanted a physical check every other week. Strange, but okay. Designers are eccentric sometimes. So, one evening we’re all working really late on a project together. We’ve got some bottles of wine around, some pizzas, etc. It’s miserably long hours but we’re a good team and having a good time.
All of a sudden Will looks up from his computer and freaking runs as fast as he can out the door. Not a word to any of us, he just dashes out. We all look at each other, try calling him, etc, with no answer. We finish up the project and go home still wondering what happened. The next day Will doesn’t come into work. He doesn’t come in the next day either. We try calling his emergency contact, but don’t get any response there either.
So we Google him, and see the FBI press release. Turns out he was arrested about 500 miles from our office a few hours after he ran out. I guess he got a tip that the FBI was onto him and decided to make a run for it. Turns out he had been defrauding payroll companies for years, to the tune of about $1M. That’s why he didn’t want direct deposit for his paycheck. What he didn’t know was that we processed our physical checks through the same payroll company as our direct deposit, and they reported his new address to the FBI. Oops.
69. On the Lam
One of our guys disappeared from the office for a few years without explanation and just returned recently. I know where he was that whole time. Turns out he took a work van to rob a bank. He got arrested and after five years of “working somewhere else,” he “decided” that he wanted to come back to work for us again.
70. Setting the Record Straight
My mom worked at a lousy retail place, and when I was 16 she got me a job there. One of the co-workers basically bullied my mom daily—she’d cry often and eventually quit. A week or so later, the bully’s fiancé gets hired and I proceed to talk to him about how nasty of a woman and how ugly she is—pretending I wasn’t aware they were engaged. Got fired that day. Not even mad, that place was a soul sucker.
71. Some Sad Some Awful
I hire contractors for large teams and I’ve had a few.
Most common: being drunk/high at work. It happens way too much.
Creepiest: girl complained a guy was stalking her at work. I talked to him and said he needs to stay away from her. Walked in on him licking her computer mouse and touching himself.
Most impressive: It was a team of attorneys working on a document review and privilege log. She was absolutely the best one I had: smart, competent, super friendly, knew the law backwards and forwards. Her agency showed up with a security guard from the firm. The woman had lied on her background check and was using someone else’s name. She was not an attorney and had never gone to law school. She already had a history with the law of impersonating other professionals including an accountant, a locksmith, and a darn doctor. I don’t know the full story but I’d like to believe she was as good at those positions as she was at being a lawyer.
Saddest in retrospect: The guy came highly recommended but was constantly messing everything up. Just terrible mistakes, completely missing meetings, leaving tasks undone, just all around completely incompetent. I worked with him to try to get him to do better and he was genuinely trying. When I pointed out the mistake it was obvious to him and he couldn’t believe he made it and couldn’t explain his thought process.
He was so frustrated to the point of tears because he was trying so hard. I eventually called him in after a very public screw up and said we had to let him go. I find out later that shortly after I fired him he found out he had a brain tumor which ultimately killed him. Apparently, before this he was really sharp and really good at what he did. There but for the grace of God go I.
72. Chasing His Dreams
Happened earlier this week. Near perfect resume. Guy has quite relevant experience up until about four years ago, and has been trying to get his own startup off the ground since then. It’s not working out (no big deal, most don’t) so he’s looking for another job. Of course, I go and Google his startup. It’s complete and utter BS. He’s been trying to get people to invest in the equivalent of a perpetual motion machine (not that, but similarly fanciful concept of another type). No wonder he couldn’t get any investment or traction of any other type.
So yeah, hard pass.
73. Crossing the Line
We had a sales rep with six kids, who thought no one would ever fire him because he had been working there for so long and had a good reputation. No one wanted to do anything about it. Finally, he crossed the line when he started harassing and hitting on all the female employees—including my wife. We fired him.
74. This One Stings
At the convenience store where I work, a few of us found a live scorpion inside the frozen yogurt machine one day. The manager does not want to let the public know that this ever happened.
75. You Made a Good Choice, Sir
My wife was due with our first daughter. The company asked me to go on a two-week trip that overlapped with her due date. I told them it wasn’t gonna work for me. They then offered a single week trip that still overlapped and told me to choose one or the other. I chose to cut the umbilical cord. I’m sure they broke the law but it wasn’t worth the fight. Had some cash put away and spent the next couple months changing diapers until I was ready to put my skill set back to work. Thank goodness finding subsequent work wasn’t that hard.
76. Winners At The Bar
I fired a chick because she passed out on the register, while holding a customer’s credit card, because she was drinking more vodka tonic than she was serving. Poor dude was so nice, just wanted the card back. Fired a dude for trying to sell fentanyl at the bar…my boss sure knew how to pick them, I just had to weed out the useless ones. Fired a guy the same night I promoted him. He was a barback, a real hard worker and seemed nice. The moment I made him a bartender, he started acting like a pretentious twat and being condescending to the barbacks. There were a few others, but less on the spot.
77. Dropping the Ball
I was working at a small retail sports chain as an assistant manager. The District manager hired another assistant manager for our store. About a month into him working there I asked him if he could cover one of my shifts. His response was “I would but my probation officer doesn’t want me working alone with girls under the age of 17.” Ummm what? Up till this point neither my manager, DM, or myself knew that he had a probation officer.
I knew that he was formerly in the military and where he was from so I simply googled all the information I had on him. It turns out he was dishonorably discharged because he had been found with ridiculous amount of child porn on his computer. I texted our district manager the links I had found and that was it…so much for background checks.
78. Leaving on a Jet Plane
I was in the military and was trying to take my vacation time before I lost the days. They denied my requests four different times and I hadn’t had a day off in three months. I was working 12 to 16-hour shifts most days. I was beyond done. I was teaching some new guys part of the tasks for one job. Everything was fine, and I went to do something else on the plane. This Quality Assurance guy that everyone knew was a pain came in. I did my stuff well and he never bothered me, so I didn’t pay him any attention. He started talking to one of the new dudes.
He then asked to talk to me and pulled me aside. He asked why I hadn’t told the new guy about some super obscure caution about water under a grate in the hangar floor. It was something that had nothing to do with our job and didn’t really matter at all, he was just being a pain. I was over the job, so I told him, “Listen, I’ve been denied my leave four separate times and I’ve been working for three months straight, so if you have a problem with the way I taught them then write me up. I don’t give a damn and you can stuff it up your behind too. Tell my boss I said that.”
It was a little extreme but I was pushed to the breaking point. When I went back in, I knew I was in deep doo-doo because the guy walked out of my shop head’s office and I got called right in. When I went in there, the shop head said, “I heard what happened out there, submit the days you want to take leave right now and I’ll approve it for you.” Score one for me.
79. Losing It All
I’m a casino worker. I know about a disturbing number of suicides that happen on our property. Almost none are reported to the public.
80. Vanity Cam
I know that only one of the security cameras in our building actually works. The rest are for show.
81. You Can’t Handle the Truth
I told my Muslim customers that the food they were being served was not halal, despite being told by my boss to pretend it was.
82. Letting It Slip
I had an employee who was brought into the office for doodling on product packaging. The other manager in the room said, “Do you know why we have you in here?” He replied, “Because I was stealing.” Yep, fired on the spot.
83. A Lot On His Pallet
I used to work at a small, family-owned grocery store for a few years. We got our load in on Mondays and Thursdays, and we got passed over one Monday. The distributor said we’d get the missing load in on Thursday. So, what essentially happened was a double load, and my two receiving partners were out sick. I was the only person in the warehouse receiving at the time, and got to take on 15+ pallets of groceries that needed to hit the shelves immediately.
I was specifically told to not go up front, and to just do what I could while the front end crew covered the aisles and cash registers. Well, a lot of them were either lazy, untrained, or just putting in their hours so they could pay bills. I put in my earbud (just one) and got to work. I’m halfway through checking in the pallets when I get called up front. So I ignore it and continue. Then I get called again. So I head up there and get yelled at by a new hire with a bad attitude to “do your job and bag for me!” Luckily, the customer was a regular and we got along very well. She told me that she was fine and could bag her own groceries.
Between the customer and the fact that I wasn’t having it, I walked away. I had three years and two ranks on her, so I went back to my pallets. Then, I get the newest hotshot manager in my face about having an earbud in on the clock—which is allowed as long as you have one ear free. She said I could be sent home and not come back if I wanted to listen to music. I gestured to the pallets and said “Go for it, these all need to be checked in and broken down. Have fun.” I got to keep my earbud in.
84. Gambled and Lost
A guy was stealing from my company, thinking I would never fire him because he was my best friend. He was wrong. He hates me to this day, six years later. It was not an insignificant theft. I felt I had to protect the livelihood of the other 1,000 people who worked at the facility.
85. Soap Opera
The hotel I work at tries to save money by making our own detergent to wash the linens in—out of all the unfinished complimentary soap that you used and left behind.
86. So That’s How You Really Feel?
I worked at a café chain known for soups, sandwiches, and salads throughout high school. I was good friends with exactly three people. Whenever our group got to close the store, it was always a fun time. We ended up messing around a bit with the drive-thru headsets after hours while chatting and cleaning up the store. There was a particularly attractive new manager who had been hired recently and she was a bit of a hot topic between a group of high school guys.
We were unaware that the store mics and cameras ran to an app on the manager’s phone. We all got called in the next day. They didn’t fire us. Oh no, it was much worse. The manager had a good sense of humor. She made printouts of our conversation and made us repeat it verbatim to the new hot manager, who was in tears laughing at how terrible we felt. Taught us a good lesson. Good managing right there.
87. Taking It To The Next Level
A Lieutenant had already made himself a reputation as an irresponsible idiot. Overseas, he’s given a nice office job with a very, very responsible NCO in the hopes that he can’t mess things up too badly. But the NCO can’t babysit during off-hours. LT proceeds to get drunk (big no-no right there when deployed). Steal a gator (think ATV) from the motor pool. And crash it into his Battalion Commander’s door. Idiot was on a plane back to the States within 48 hours.
88. Role Reversal
When I showed up for my interview the hiring manager was not there. I was told he was “out sick” but I could interview with his backup. Halfway through the interview the office starts buzzing with activity. Whispers of an emergency were circulating and the “sick” manager’s name is part of the emergency. We wrapped up the interview early and I went home. Later that day I googled his name. He wasn’t sick. He had turned himself in that morning for shooting/killing his baby’s mother. The bullet also grazed the baby but didn’t cause serious injury. I got the job.
89. Your Safety Is Our Number Two Priority
I told my supervisors, manager, and safety department about severe issues at work, including broken equipment and more. They didn’t do anything. I told the union and they didn’t do anything either. I reported the issues for SEVERAL months—nothing. So, I finally said forget it, and reported them to the government. Suddenly, I had my supervisor freak out and ask if I called them.
I told him straight up, “Yes, you’re darn right I did.” He threatened to fire me. I told him about the whistleblower laws and how that would be the stupidest decision he could ever make. I told him to please do it, as I would love the easy $200k I would easily win from the lawsuit. I haven’t had any issues at work since.
90. Jack of All Secrets
By jumping from department to department over the years, I knew a whole combination of things at my old job that no one person was ever supposed to know. I knew alarm codes, vault combinations, locations of keys, passwords, schedules, location and functionality of cameras and security systems. This led to pretty much nothing more than a lot of idle daydreaming on bad days of things I could, but never would, do if the company didn’t keep me happy.
91. Raise a Little Hell
Over the first year I worked there, I took over most of the tasks in my department which led to a massive increase in productivity. I then found out that I was being paid significantly less than what others in my position across the industry were making. So I go to my boss and tell them I had done all this work increasing productivity and I would like to discuss a raise. They said no.
So, I work there for another year, asking for a raise every now and again until I was offered a job somewhere else that paid double. It didn’t start for a couple months so I asked for a raise again, thinking “Why the heck why not give it one last try?” My boss goes off, tells me I won’t get a raise and says some very colorful things about me.
It culminated with her telling me “If you don’t like your pay, maybe we should evaluate your future at this company,” to which I replied, “Already have, I took another job and this was your last chance to offer me what I deserve. I quit.” I then walked out of that office. My friends told me that my sudden departure caused a massive backup of work that ended with my manager being fired for it.
92. No Kids Or Old People
I was 21 and a hostess at a fine dining restaurant. For some reason, even though I was well-versed in the seating chart and was careful to make sure it was fair, this girl had it out for me. She came up to the hostess stand and bawled me out, let me know that “if I ever sat another kid or old person in her section she’d let me have it (what?!).” I went to the GM and told him I’d quit, it was either her or me. He fired her on the spot. She threw a full-on tantrum and called me every name in the book. Goodbye.
93. Going Out Like A Shark
Worked at the Tempe Improv for two years. We had pre-shift meetings about 30 min before each show. One day, during shark week, my buddy showed up 20 mins late (on one of only a few days where the owner was actually there) scotch drunk, wearing a full-on shark costume, wielding his Keytar. He proceeded to get on stage and perform a rap about sharks accompanied by his Keytar and then sat down next to the owner like nothing had happened. It was so legendary, even for a comedy club.
I was working in the service industry and one of my customers ordered something that had since been reworked on the menu. I could tell he didn’t like it but didn’t want to complain. I told my manager exactly that and she got mad at me because he didn’t actually complain. She yelled at me about how I couldn’t know what he was thinking, so I asked her to just go talk to the guy and if I was wrong she could fire me. You’ll never guess exactly what the guy said to her. She didn’t look me in the eye for over a month. This was the second time something like this happened with her.
95. Red Scare
I work in a restaurant kitchen. The big secret from the customers that I know about is that our most expensive salmon dish on the menu is not actually the expensive red salmon you think you’re getting, it’s just cheap pink salmon with red food dye.
96. Company Transformers
From my last job: “Under no circumstances are you even to look at what’s going on in the other half of the plant.” I peeked. What was going on? They were building an automated side of the factory. I got replaced by a robot a year later.
97. 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.
98. Lady, Get Over Him Already
I used to manage a group home for developmentally disabled adults. I was in charge of hiring the staff that we needed to make the house run properly. I saw a name come across my desk that I had to interview and I instantly looked them up. Turns out, this was a girl that had an obsessive crush on me from years ago and, based on her social media, she still did.
I was in a panic, because she was basically stalking everything I did, and I really couldn’t back out because it was five minutes before the interview. She came in, and it was so weird… she acted normal. We interviewed in a professional manner for about 15 minutes, I showed her around, and I thought, “Wow, maybe she has done some maturing and just let it go.”
Then we got back to my office. I started a sentence like, “Well, (name), it’s been a pleasure having you here and I-……” “Oh, no no no, we aren’t done yet. You think you can ignore everything like you don’t know what’s going on?! I know where you work, now. I know where you live, and I’m going to keep calling.” There was more she was saying along the lines of me telling her to kindly leave, but a phone call to the police, as well as a restraining order, kept her away from work and my life.
99. An Inconvenient Store
I worked at a convenience store. My coworker and I were classmates, and we were 16 or 17 years old at the time. The place got broken into, food and drinks were stolen, and when I came to work, the owner and his daughter were yelling at my coworker. He was angry and wanted us two to be liable for the damages. So he threatened to fire me and my coworker—but when my coworker told him that he’ll have to clean up the mess with only his daughter, the owner suddenly mellowed out. We quit a week later anyway when we found out that it was the daughter who had let her friends in to steal stuff, and then roughed the place up to make it look like a break in. The place shut down a few years later because of violations.
100. Big Pharma
I was promoted to VP of my company. The company was in trouble, and the CEO had asked me to figure out why and fix it. I arranged for a random drug test. All employees, the CEO, me, everyone. All on the same day and everyone went down at the same time. Even said I would ignore weed but anyone with anything stronger would be gone. We get the results back and I fired everyone who had tested positive for any drug other than weed. The CEO and myself were the only two people left working for the company.