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New Hires Under Fire

, , , , | Working | January 25, 2018

(We have a coworker who is in the habit of playfully saying, “You’re fired,” every time someone makes a mistake. No one ever takes him seriously, since he is always smiling and laughing when he says it. That changes one day when we are training new hires.)

Coworker: “You’ll need to hold down the shift key while you make this selection so it’s a perfect square.”

(The new hire fumbles about a bit and has difficulty pressing two buttons at the same time. I can see they’re frustrated, and my coworker attempts to make a funny in order to put them at ease.)

Coworker: “You’re fired. Here. Let me take over, and I can show you again.”

(The new hire is oblivious to the second half of what my coworker has just said. They start to get a glassy look in their eyes and totally lose any color in their face. I can see that they have the first-day jitters very bad, so I step in to calm them down.)

Me: “Oh, no no no no! He was just trying to be funny! You’re not fired at all!”

New Hire: *wipes their eyes and looks at me* “You’re terrible! I quit!”

(They storm into the back room to where the time cards are and where we keep our personal belongings.)

Me: *to coworker* “I never thought that your joke would ever get that kind of reaction, but I guess you have to be more careful from now on.”

(The new hire suddenly appears behind us with a smile.)

New Hire: “Gotcha!”

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