The HR Professor

The HR Professor

Teaching You How to Navigate the Workplace

Am I Going to Get Fired?

All of us at some point have had that paranoid moment when we were wondering if we were going to get fired from our job. Sometimes, the concern is justified and sometimes not. There are some signs that may mean the bad news is coming sooner rather than later:

  • You have been working on a project for weeks or months and you are suddenly removed from it and the project is given to another person on the team.
  • You are no longer invited to meetings that you were a steady participant in for some time.
  • Your manager begins to cancel your 1:1 meetings on a regular basis when this was not a normal occurrence in the past.
  • Management team members avoid eye contact with you and don’t stop by your office space as often as they used to.
  • You are not receiving new assignments or projects, and your e-mail traffic slows.
  • Your manager asks you to document your major work processes or tasks in a detailed format.
  • You make an impactful mistake that loses the company money, you lose a major customer account, etc.
  • You start to receive verbal feedback about performance that you need to improve in some areas. This verbal feedback is followed up with an e-mail summary.
  • You are the subject of an investigation. It may be for harassment, creating a hostile work environment, and so on. The investigation results will determine the termination decision.
  • You received a “poor” or “weak” or “not meeting expectations” score on your performance evaluation.
  • You have received one or more written warnings or are on an official PIP (Performance Improvement Plan).
  • The company is going through a re-organization. Employees are being moved to different teams, new managers, departments, and so on.
  • New leadership is hired.

If one or more of these situations happen, it doesn’t guarantee you are going to lose your job. However, I suggest being proactive and reaching out to your manager as often as possible to ask for feedback. Ask how your performance is and in what ways you can improve. Then do your best to make those improvements. Ask what you are doing well and focus on those strengths.

What were the signs you noticed if you were terminated from a past job?

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About Brenda Maday
Portland, OR