son got fired

iVillage Member
Registered: 01-30-2007
son got fired
Fri, 06-08-2012 - 7:31pm


I need someone to talk to.  My son got fired from his job, again.  Each job has lasted only about 1 1/2 years.  Jobs in his field are hard to come by, and he has had to be a salesman, which he is just not good at.  Neither place really trained him to do what he was supposed to do.  I don't feel this is completely his fault.  He showed up on time, worked 12-14 hour days sometimes, always did whatever he was told even if it was grunt work.  There were so many other things involved in his job too, that I don't think he really knew what was expected, and they never really told him.  Unbelievable that he has had two completely sucky bosses.  I know he has responsibility in this, but I feel some of it is just plain dumb luck.  He's like a bad luck magnet.  His whole life has been hard, bad stuff always happens to him.  You know what they say about bad things happening to good people?  Well, that is the case here.  My son has a huge heart, is polite and nice to everyone and he is a HARD WORKER!!   Worst part about it, he's getting married soon.  So nice of them to fire him right before his wedding.   My husband is afraid he will not get hired anywhere now, even out of his field.  (and with this economy???) I wish I had answers for him.  It was so much easier when they were little.  I wonder if they will still get married, I hope so.  I hope her parents don't get too pissed at him.  I just cannot be mad at him, he's my boy. 

Avatar for sabrtooth
iVillage Member
Registered: 12-03-1999
Sun, 06-10-2012 - 9:24pm

Nester, you are absolutly correct.  I have both used the "at will" clause--and had it used on me.  Sometimes, the person just becomes a bad fit.  Sometimes, the management changes, and the new broom sweeps clean.  They want "their" people.  As long as there is NO hint of discrimination as the reason for the termination, and the employer does not contest the unemployment insurance payment, in most states in the USA, employment is "at will".

In this case, since he has been fired twice in a row, he really needs to look HONESTLY at his behavior.  Especially in this economy, people have to be more than just "a hard worker".  Employers are looking for pro-active people, who take on responsibility without being told.  Who spend their own time learning the job, and staying ahead of the field.

My dd#2 was recently pursued by a headhunter, for a executive/legal secretary position. The firm trying to hire her away from her current job wanted someone who was on top of the software in the field, and who would be able to introduce the bosses to cutting edge technology, rather than the other way 'round.  They wanted someone who had researched the company and the head honchos, and who would be able to reference the accomplishments and articles the honchos had written, and cases the firm had won.  They wanted someone who understood the company "culture" and would be able to fit in it.  They wanted someone who could reference cases she (THE SECRETARY) had worked on, that demonstrated knowledge of the field.  They pursued my dd because she has in the past, and is now, the admin asst to named partners and presidents/CEO's, and the references she has reflect what they wanted.  My dd decided to stay in the job she has, but the things the headhunter told her the company wanted, are enlightening. 

Avatar for deenow17
iVillage Member
Registered: 10-12-2004
Sun, 06-10-2012 - 9:00pm
This is exactly what I was thinking. Working for an American company, I ran into this issue all the time. They would claim "employment at will" and want to terminate a Canadian employee. We don't have this here in Canada & our laws are very specific. If they aren't followed then you are looking at a wrongful dismissal charge that the gov't will help you file. Also, a termination payment must be paid here (amount varies by province) when an employee is terminated here. We still have crappy managers & little or no training with companies that don't understand the rights of the employees. But if an employee choses to look for assistance then they have options.

iVillage Member
Registered: 08-22-2009
Sun, 06-10-2012 - 12:58pm

 Not if it falls under At Will criteria.

At-will employment is a doctrine of American law that defines an employment relationship in which either party can break the relationship with no liability, provided there was no express contract for a definite term governing the employment relationship and that the employer does not belong to a collective bargaining group (i.e., has not recognized a union). Under this legal doctrine:

“ any hiring is presumed to be "at will"; that is, the employer is free to discharge individuals "for good cause, or bad cause, or no cause at all," and the employee is equally free to quit, strike, or otherwise cease work.[1]
iVillage Member
Registered: 01-30-2007
Sun, 06-10-2012 - 12:37pm

O.K., that is very good to know!    My son says they never helped him, he has asked what he could do better, but I'm very sure that there is nothing documented.   There was never any employee review or whatever.  My husband has worked for a large company for 25 years so, didn't know how things worked in a private company.  Thanks!

iVillage Member
Registered: 10-16-1999
Sun, 06-10-2012 - 12:08pm

Even small companies need to document that they tried to coach the employee before they fire them or they set themselves up for a wrongful termination lawsuit. At the very least, they would likely end up paying unemployment if they don't have good documentation of ongoing problems. It's worth looking into.

iVillage Member
Registered: 01-30-2007
Re: son got fired
Sat, 06-09-2012 - 11:21pm

We wondered if there was anything illegal there, but it is a small company so they probably make up the rules as they go along, I don't know.  It would definitely be worth checking into.  And, no, there wasn't anything except he broke a $30 item once.  WHOOP-DE-DOO!   The field is agronomy, it's a little hard to explain.  He helps farmers better their crops, in a nutshell.