Is It Hard to Get Fired?

Sometimes, the worse you are at your job the harder it is to let you go.

Having recently provided a probing analysis of why people get fired, I was haunted by another burning question. Each day, as I diluted my morning coffee with a dash of organic goat milk, I wondered: is it hard to get fired?

The short answer is, it can be. The long answer? Well, that's why you're here, isn't it? Gather round and get ready for some serious answering.


Why Do People Get Fired?

Taking a dump on someone's desk is one way to part with your company.

At a time when hundreds of thousands of people are unemployed due to lay-offs, company bankruptcies and budget cuts, it only seemed natural to look at the the most common reasons the rest of us lose our jobs.

What are the top reasons people get fired?

To get at the answer I carefully mixed the hazed memories of my own experience and observation with some very dubious internet research. And, to be honest, the results were hardly shocking. I mean, some of this stuff is so obvious it's incredible people do it and get fired for it, but there it is.


Friendship at Work - Oxymoron or Oxygenius?

Should you make friends at work - a philosophical minefield.

Is it possible to find a friend in the cold corridors of a faceless corporation? Yes. Of course it is. What a stupid question.

But since we spend way too much at work it seemed like a good idea to take a look at the way human relationships unfold in the corporate world. I mean, who the hell are these people we cohabit the ruins of Western Civilization with 40+ hours a week? What kind of relations do we build with them?


Dealing with Work-Related Depression

If you find yourself sitting in a fetal  position outside your work, you may want to re-evaluate things.

It could be the beginning of the year, your work-anniversary, your birthday, or a Monday - any day that signals a new beginning. But then again, it might as well be yet another day. Nothing is different, everything is just as pointless as it was before, and whatever new reserves of energy you acquired that gave you the strength to go on are already depleting faster than the ozone layer.

You, my friend, are suffering from work-related depression.


Dealing With Extra Work

Time to learn how to say "no" to your boss.

It's 4:49pm, and in 11 minutes you have to brave traffic, pick up your kids from school, organize some kind of communal meal, visit your mother-in-law in the hospital to make sure the hip she broke while polishing the TV antenna on her roof is healing, go through the mail, pay your bills, dedicate 20 minutes to your secret online poker addiction on pogo.com, and read a few pages from the latest Stephen King novel about an evil door handle that makes people explode, before finally collapsing in bed.

But then you are suddenly interrupted by a call from your boss. Apprehensive, you walk over to her office and when you see her face you already know it's no good. Sure enough, there's a project that needs to get done ASAP. You glance at the clock pointedly, now showing 4:55pm, but she stares you down into submission. How do you say "no" in a situation like this?


The Most Depressing Jobs

It can be exciting, but they don't call it "shell shock" for nothing.

First and foremost, happy New Year! After a lot of thinking, I decided that nothing would say "Bring on 2012!" better than a little entry on the most depressing jobs out there. You may think the Jackal has gone completely insane, but there's no better way to start a New Year than on a crappy note, because it only leaves room for improvement.


The "Fun" Oppression

The clenched fist and raised arm are typical of a "happy" employee.

Across your typical fiscal year, how many pot-lucks, holiday parties, company morale-boosting meetings, birthday gatherings, Secret Santa gift exchanges, baby showers, engagement celebrations, and other fun team-building exercises do you have at the office?

How many inspirational emails do you receive from your CEO, whose frequent Mother Teresa and Gandhi quotes make you think you're going to end world hunger by sorting that Excel data sheet and shipping it off to some corporate wig?

Do you get stopped in the hallway, on your way to get that repressively foul cup of coffee from your hopelessly depressing employee lounge, and get told to smile more? Or worse, that your work is appreciated and that you matter?


What Kind of an Employee Am I?

4 REVOLUTIONARY employees with 
brass balls and some dynamite

Instead of hammering at you with wise reflections on the moral decay of the modern corporate world, the Jackal is going to give you some fun.

It's almost the end of the year, which for some people is a time of self-assessment, laying the foundations for those New Year's Resolutions they never keep. For others, it's just another reason to go shopping and get drunk on New Year's Eve, erasing the memories of the deeply troubled and traumatizing past. And yet for others, it's just a fun time. So, to go with the spirit of the third group, here are some fun surveys to help you determine what type of employee you are:


Office Secret Santa

We've all been there. 

Where did the idea of Secret Santa come from? Well, the history of Secret Santa is as sordid as they get. The twisted hero of this bizarre tale is philanthropist and kind-hearted man, Larry Dean Stewart. Born in 1948, down on his luck, hungry and broke, he was given money for a meal. I warned you - this is disturbing, sick stuff. Anyway, so this Larry Dean Stewart, like in a typical Horatio Alger story, became rich and decided to "give back to the community." And so the Secret Santa idea was born.