Do you think a mistake on the first day should lead to you being fired?

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  1. Alecia Murphy profile image72
    Alecia Murphyposted 11 years ago

    Do you think a mistake on the first day should lead to you being fired?

    If it was your first day on the job and you had a slip of the tongue, do you think you'd understand your boss' need to fire you? A newsreader was recently fired for dropping the f-bomb on the air and it was his first day. Do you think the supervisor was justified or just trying to be politically correct.

  2. tsmog profile image85
    tsmogposted 11 years ago

    Great question Alecia. I do not really have an answer. My view is the answer is 'No.' Yet, consider the business, whether a small business independently owned and operated, (note if I remember correctly and not sure in the USA a small business is considered up to 500 employees by the Small Business Admin)

    With a giggle ponder how many comprise the Team at HubPages. The question is are they a small business as defined by the SBA? (Net revenue is the next consideration of the SBA) And, could one infer from that HP is a "ma and pa" business that like many began at the kitchen table, proceeded to the basement or garage for development, and later rented some office space within an operating budget.

    Next, like we do as hubbers owning and operating an entrepreneurial venture of some kind and size one simply adds water, hopefully some TLC, and certainty does share something will occur, and hopefully that is growth of some kind and size.

    With that in mind consider business ethics, business position, reputation and creed, and of course the business concept of the business mission, hopefully with a statement offering. Offering the employee guidance, the client and/or consumer an offering of good faith, and an overall guide for that business enterprise.

    To answer your question much may be considered. However, personally, I would take that employee of to the side away from others, and seek counseling with the who, what, where, why, how, and how much of the matter, and then relate that to the overall mission statement somehow and someway.

    A long answer to the question 'Do I think a mistake on the first day (of work) should lead to (me) being fired? I defer to the answer in the first paragraph. However a tad of sharing a bit and a byte more the State of California is an 'At Will' employment state.

    That means as quoted "California’s Labor Code specifies that an employment relationship with no specified duration is presumed to be employment “at-will.” This means, at least in theory, that the employer or employee may terminate the employment relationship at any time, with or without cause. There are exceptions to the at-will rule created by statute, the courts or public policy."

    The second question "would I understand?", well, the answer is yes. However, I may not be happy with that decision and seek help with knowledge of the motivation of that determination by the 'supervisor.' In not all cases is the supervisor the boss. I would consider recourse as you shared.

    1. Alecia Murphy profile image72
      Alecia Murphyposted 11 years agoin reply to this

      Interesting response, tsmog, thanks for sharing.

    2. tsmog profile image85
      tsmogposted 11 years agoin reply to this

      Your Welcome Alecia. I offer an apology saying I tend to write with length as a personality trait of nature, yet I ponder nurture too. After all, said with a smile I am a hubber - giggle, giggle and smile.

  3. ketage profile image81
    ketageposted 11 years ago

    It really does depend on the job, and the mistake made. I can think of many jobs where it is better to fire the person on the first day rather then wait.

    We used to own a butchery that used commercial sized band-saws to cut up meat and bone. A guy I hired claimed to an experienced butcher, yet on the first day he cut his hand to the bone. I paid his medical bills and 2 weeks wages and let him go on the same day. Some might think I was too strict, but in my opinion I could not in good conscience take the chance of him making another mistake.

    As in  the newsreaders case, I would say yes, it was justified, if I was the boss, I would have done the same thing.

    In another case I had hired a store assistant who managed to price nearly 20 boxes of goods wrong, most of the goods he priced at way below cost, needless to say we sold nearly half that stock in one afternoon, our customers were happy, me not so much, but that kind of mistake did not warrant being fired, although he did get a stern talking to.
    Most People make mistakes on the first day, Whether they stay hired or they get fired really does depend on the severity of the mistake.

    1. Alecia Murphy profile image72
      Alecia Murphyposted 11 years agoin reply to this

      Interesting ketage. I think being an employer makes you see things a little differently than just being the employee.
      I think you're definitely right that everyone does make mistakes the first day.

  4. Glimmer Twin Fan profile image94
    Glimmer Twin Fanposted 11 years ago

    I think I know the clip you are referencing, and if this is the one, then in this case definitely yes, that mistake should have gotten him fired.  Not only did he say those words (although I could not even hear it when I watched the clip), he was extremely uncomfortable and awkward in front of the camera.  He looked totally unprepared and in that position he was supposed to represent the station.

    That being said, I certainly don't think everyone should be fired for making a mistake on the first day.  There are so many things going on that first day that it is easy to make a mistake. 

    Of course, if you tell a company that you can do something during an interview or on your resume and then, when it comes time to do it, you can't, well that is another story.  It's much easier to let someone go early on than wait until they have been at the company a while.

    Basically, I think every situation has to be looked at separately.

    1. Alecia Murphy profile image72
      Alecia Murphyposted 11 years agoin reply to this

      Excellent point. I think it should be on a case by case basis. Some people reveal themselves to be unqualified early while others manage to mask it.

  5. FatFreddysCat profile image94
    FatFreddysCatposted 11 years ago

    That TV station will likely have to pay a fine to the FCC due to that guy dropping the F-Bomb on air. Plus, it makes them look bad. So yeah, I can see why they'd show that guy the door quickly.

    You can't help but feel sorry for the reporter though. Worst first day on the job EVER! Haha.

    1. Alecia Murphy profile image72
      Alecia Murphyposted 11 years agoin reply to this

      Hi FatFreddys Cat,
      I forgot about our friends at the FCC. Hopefully if he can get another job he'll be better prepared.

    2. FatFreddysCat profile image94
      FatFreddysCatposted 11 years agoin reply to this

      I dunno, I feel for the guy, but if he can't handle the pressure of appearing on live TV in North Dakota (!!), what chance does he have anywhere else? Haha.

  6. Levertis Steele profile image75
    Levertis Steeleposted 11 years ago

    Unless the boss wants to run the risk of it happening again, he should feel comfortable with his decision to fire the guy. People who issue a slip of the tongue are practiced "cussers." It will happen again!. How many times have I been in conversation with a person who said a curse word, grabbed his/her mouth and said, "Sorry. That slipped." How many times have I heard the same cursers apologize? Many. Since this guy is a newsreader, the boss should get rid of him, unless he knows him well enough to believe that he can control himself. It is not likely to happen, although it is possible. Considering that his job involves  speaking to hundreds of thousands of people, I assume, he needs to take a hike. The boss has to be wise enough to protect the integrity of the station.

    The newsreader has skills and will find another job. Sometimes tough experiences are the most effective teachers. Who wants to get fired again? That certainly does not help to make an impressive job portfolio.

    First day or last day has not one thing to do with the cursing.

    1. Alecia Murphy profile image72
      Alecia Murphyposted 11 years agoin reply to this

      Hi Levertis Steele,
      Interesting point you make about experienced cussers. I don't so I'm always  intrigued at any point when someone curses in public. But you're right it probably would've happened again.
      Hopefully he can learn from this.

  7. MickS profile image61
    MickSposted 11 years ago


    1. Alecia Murphy profile image72
      Alecia Murphyposted 11 years agoin reply to this

      Thanks for responding.

  8. Stephanie Henkel profile image93
    Stephanie Henkelposted 11 years ago

    Absolutely, this guy deserved to be fired! He was hired as a co-anchor to a tv news program. By the nature of the job, his boss and higher ups in the company put their trust in him to act in a professional manner as he represented the station to thousands of viewers. Even if he were not on the air, he should been more professional than to curse in front of his co-anchor and other staff of the show. To make the mistake of dropping the F-bomb while on the air was inexcusable, a betrayal of the trust of his superiors and his audience. It makes it even worse that this was his first day because he should have been on his best behavior...what will happen on his 10th day? or 100th?

    1. Alecia Murphy profile image72
      Alecia Murphyposted 11 years agoin reply to this

      From your perspective it makes sense. Especially since this is a job where you show your face to the public. The same goes for anyone in customer service.

  9. Miller2232 profile image61
    Miller2232posted 11 years ago

    There are so many thing you have to take into consideration.

    1. Alecia Murphy profile image72
      Alecia Murphyposted 11 years agoin reply to this

      Thanks for your response!

  10. wvugirl2007 profile image75
    wvugirl2007posted 11 years ago

    I would have to consider the job and the mistake. If it is an assistant copying the wrong file and having to do it again that is not a good reason, but saying the f-bomb on television may be. I believe it also could depend on the person's past actions. If the person has been let go before for the same actions in the past than they might not deserve another chance. If they have never had any issues at any past employment then maybe they deserve a chance. With this being a local news and that they do have to fight to get viewers from other channels they probably have to be politically correct to keep people happy.

    1. Alecia Murphy profile image72
      Alecia Murphyposted 11 years agoin reply to this

      Yeah television news is definitely a politically correct arena and I imagine they still have to fight for viewers tooth and nail.

  11. Sunshine625 profile image86
    Sunshine625posted 11 years ago

    In reference to the anchor being fired...I think they did him a favor. Yes, he was wrong for not following the cardinal media rule about your mike always being on, but he just seemed so awkward and out of place. The way he approached his audience when he began speaking was more like he was in a sports bar then on camera. I thought we were being punked the first time I saw the video. I thought it was a spoof, but I guess it was real. I think he might want to consider a career behind the camera instead of in front.

    1. Alecia Murphy profile image72
      Alecia Murphyposted 11 years agoin reply to this

      I know exactly what you mean. I did broadcasting in high school and so many of the kids doing it had no presence. He was one of them. Maybe he should just produce or direct where you can say those words and not get fired.

  12. stanwshura profile image72
    stanwshuraposted 11 years ago

    It depends on how severe the "mistake" was, and often how public.

    I think that, in general, employees, new or not, should be forgiven innocent mistakes so long as their work is usually good and especially more so if they work hard and try to do a good job.  Some mistakes leave management little to no choice.  Others can and should be corrected kindly but certainly by a competent and compassionate boss.

    Buuuuut, back to my first point:  A broadcaster dropping the f-bomb on air - sorry - see ya!

    1. Alecia Murphy profile image72
      Alecia Murphyposted 11 years agoin reply to this

      It's hard to cover an on-camera F-bomb. Otherwise, I'd say give him a chance if it was stuttering or mispronunciation. Hopefully he learned his lesson.

  13. lburmaster profile image73
    lburmasterposted 11 years ago

    It depends on the mistake on the first day. Cussing, not too much. But that depends on the job. Say a swim instructor should definitely fired for that on the first day. But a newsreader, not so much. That supervisor might just be too picky. The newsreader would have a good talking to and if he makes one more mistake, he's out.

    1. Alecia Murphy profile image72
      Alecia Murphyposted 11 years agoin reply to this

      Thanks for sharing your answer, iburmaster.

  14. nanderson500 profile image77
    nanderson500posted 11 years ago

    In the situation of the newsreader, I think the station didn't have much of a choice but to fire him thanks to the FCC. In the vast majority of cases, however, I don't think it would be fair to fire someone on the first day. It's hard to expect someone to be a good at a job right away. Even firing someone after the first month seems overly harsh unless they are just totally lazy or incompetent.

    1. Alecia Murphy profile image72
      Alecia Murphyposted 11 years agoin reply to this

      Thanks for sharing your thoughts.

  15. Lor's Stories profile image60
    Lor's Storiesposted 11 years ago
  16. kristykmr1993 profile image58
    kristykmr1993posted 11 years ago

    I don't think you should be fired because of that. Everyone deserves a second chance and a warning. Some people are just used to their potty mouth and forget to acknowledge it. Now if it happens twice, then I think he definitely deserves to be fired. But not the first mistake.

    1. Alecia Murphy profile image72
      Alecia Murphyposted 11 years agoin reply to this

      Thanks for sharing kristykmr1993.

  17. teaches12345 profile image76
    teaches12345posted 11 years ago

    Great responses here.  This is why you must read the employee manual before the first day or ask what the protocol is in language, especially in broadcasting.  He was hired based upon his qualifications, and that speaks highly of his having the credentials to do the job.  I find colorful metaphors unnecessary in communicating in general,  there are better ways to get your point across; again, especially in broadcasting.

    1. Alecia Murphy profile image72
      Alecia Murphyposted 11 years agoin reply to this

      Great point teaches12345, he really should've thought before he spoke. Thank you so much for coming by and answering!


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