Getting fired can happen to anyone, even someone who is brilliant at their job. But what if it happens to you? Your first reaction might be shock, fear or anger, and that could lead to a number of negative choices. It’s really important to not do anything you’ll regret. So to try and turn this situation into a positive one, here are ten things you’re better off not saying or doing if you’re fired.
See Also: 7 Signs You’re About to Be Fired
Of course you’re going to be shocked at the news that you’re getting fired. No doubt phrases such as “I’ll never get a job again” will be racing through your mind. But if you panic, you could get yourself into an even bigger mess. Start by taking deep breaths and clearing your mind. Talk to someone close to you and consider your options. It may seem like the end of the world at the time, but it really isn’t.
2. Telling the Whole World About It
Before you jump on social media and tell everyone you know that you’ve been fired, stop. You need to think carefully about how you want your message to come across. Instead of going on a rampage about how much you hated working there, construct it differently. Base your story around a theme, such as the job not being the right fit. Feel free to vent to your family and close friends, but don’t go mad to everyone else. You never know who might see it, like potential employers, which could really harm your future job prospects.
3. Storming Out the Office
It doesn’t matter if you’re in utter shock or if you’ve been dreaming of the day that you’ll quit, this is not the moment to broadcast your feelings. It’s not like a film where you can say your bit, slam the door and make a dramatic exit. Leaving in a professional and smooth way will make you feel a lot better about the situation.
4. Badmouthing Your Colleagues or the Company
You’re not going to get on with everyone you work with, so you’ll probably have negative opinions about some of your co-workers. But this is not the time to share them. Don’t walk up to the person you’ve been sitting next to for years and say, “Let me tell you what I really think of you.” It might feel good, but it will only make you look bad. Save your reputation and your dignity.
5. “I Didn’t Want a Reference Anyway”
It doesn’t matter under what circumstances you’re fired, you still need to try and get a reference. Don’t walk out without one. Be brave and ask for it. The chances of you getting a positive reference are actually better than you might think. Unless you’ve done something really bad, it’s unlikely that your employers will say anything negative about you.
6. Begging for Your Job Back
If there’s one thing that would make the whole situation awkward, it would be begging. Even if you’re desperate and can’t imagine what’s going to happen without this job, don’t ask them to change their mind. Accept their decision, and save your reputation.
7. “I Never Liked the Job Anyway”
As much as hearing the words “you’re fired” will come as a shock and as much as you want the upper hand, don’t try to redeem yourself with silly phrases like these. You might think it’ll make you feel better at the time, but you’ll feel proud of yourself if you keep quiet and act professionally.
8. Hiding Out
Escaping to somewhere tropical might seem appealing right now, or even crawling under your duvet and never coming out again. Getting fired is upsetting, painful and can sometimes be embarrassing. A natural reaction is to be alone and to avoid interacting with people. But you need to get back into a regular routine as soon as possible. Take time to let it all sink in. Then the next day, get up and start looking for work. It will build your confidence and drive you to get another job that much sooner.
9. “I Was Actually Planning on Leaving Next Week”
It can be easy to lose your train of thought when you hear unexpected news and especially when you don’t have any control of the situation. You will want to switch places to try and regain some authority. But don’t try to turn the conversation around so it looks like your decision. The hardest part of getting fired is accepting it. When you do, that’s when you can move on.
10. Letting it Define You
The one thing you need to remember throughout this process is that it can be demoralizing, but it’s only the employer’s decision. This might give you the opportunity you need to regroup and chose a different path. It can be difficult but you mustn’t let this experience linger over you forever. You will grow, become stronger, upgrade your skills, find your passion, and learn a lot about yourself. Keep an open mind and turn the situation into a positive one for you.
Getting fired can either make or break you. You can let it take over your life so it always rests on your shoulders. Or you can use it as a stepping stone and move on from it. Don’t rush into anything. Take this time to reflect and make decisions that are right for you. Managing this situation will not only help you in your career, but will also help you grow as a person.
Do you have any other tips for what not to say or do when you get fired? Let us know in the comments box below.