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Getting Fired


Getting Fired

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Steve Jones
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Comments posted to this topic are about the item Getting Fired

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Cody Konior
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Some of those sound fair enough.

I've rebooted a production server once or twice by accident during high pressure events, and once or twice when a patch documented as not requiring a reboot suddenly crashed a component and/or forced a reboot. I came clean immediately but the impact was minimal so no damage done.

You have to wonder though. When a company can't afford high availability, and doesn't use VMs so there's no machine-level backups and restore for testing (a WTF in itself), what does it expect? I'm not talking about being cavalier, but due care does not extend to never doing anything because of the small risks involved. You reduce risks by being aware but they never reach 0 (excluding financial systems, health, aviation, the military, etc).

But you know, firing those people only ends up with retaining the workers who refuse to so much as blink without multiple layers of documented posterior covers, and the infrastructure that the company didn't want to invest in in the first place. Consequently, the company is the only one to suffer by acting rashly.

I'm going to throw one more possibility into the mix though. An employee refusing an order. Not every order, many orders, or any order, but an order; claiming it is either impossible, risky, unethical, or technically unsound.

In my mind (and probably only mine!) as an employee I see the contract as a way to provide full-time technical services to a company, but that contract immediately stops at the line where I'm ordered to do something where I would be unable to sleep at night. These events are few and far between but they have happened once or twice over the decade.

In most cases when I discuss it with colleagues I hear the same response: do it under protest, the documentation will cover you.

But I don't feel that way. I feel that ultimately, just like having a gun put in your hand, if someone orders you to shoot then it's still your fault for deciding to pull the trigger. "I was forced!" Yeah, but you'll still be out of a job either way. Now which way do you want to go, with your ethics and self worth (which is lost by violating your ethics), or without them?

To put it another way, would you do something terrible, just so you could turn around and tell your employer, "See! I told you so!" I suspect that would be an unprofessional attitude. So why is towing the line against all your best judgement seen as ethical?

In some cases the company realizes, hey this person is ready to get fired for refusal and so maybe they have a damned good reason, and in other cases it was their way or the highway and I choose the highway. To me, my technical expertise is for sale, but not my self worth. Not for any price. I'd accept being fired from that situation, though, I'm more likely to just hand in my resignation. Even at that point, some companies still feel they can make demands and that they must be followed during your notice period. I definitely don't agree with that.
PhilipC
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Well said Cody, good post.
Gary Varga
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I have almost always left on good terms except once. Most people will want to do so even if it is through gritted teeth as sometimes friction develops in a highly pressured environment. There is no point burning bridges unless the case is extreme.

The one time I was walked offsite was for a company that in its three year history to that point had only one person (out of many) leave of their own accord. The rest were literally marched offsite immediately. There were rumours of tribunals and people settling out of court (as I did). The company lasted a further two years before folding.

I know that was slightly off topic but I wanted to highlight that occasionally it is not down to the individual but the corporate culture.

As for ditching a DBA? I think I agree with almost everything everyone has said so far.

Gaz

-- Stop your grinnin' and drop your linen...they're everywhere!!!
Koen Verbeeck
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I was fired once (due to economic reasons). It was the best thing that happened to me in my entire career uptil now.
At the moment though, it didn't feel that way :-)


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Me too agree with Steve, Brent and everyone on this.

But DBA should keep in mind that this is not the place for falling and riseing approach. I do agree that we are not machine and as humanbeing we make mistakes. As a human there is always RISK to make mistake. However justification for "Getting FIRED" depends on the situation and impact as explain by Brent and Steve. But personally I do not like for any small issues or problem rather mistakes people blame DBA for poor performance or other server related issues without considering the limitations of system and applications.

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Core6430
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The situation where the worker doesn't learn... it costs the company money for that person, plus costs a tremendous amount of time from other employees who have to continously support that person. Not to mention it is extremely frustrating for other co-workers to have to answer the same questions or have to solve every problem along with their own full workload.
Gary Varga
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Although there are differences in the various employment legal systems around the world, I think there is a world of difference between being made redundant (losing the job because the position has disappeared) and being fired (where a replacement will fill your position). Particularly here in the UK, many people who would fall under the fired category agree to technically resign as this is deemed to be in the best interest of both parties.

Gaz

-- Stop your grinnin' and drop your linen...they're everywhere!!!
Koen Verbeeck
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Gary Varga (3/27/2014)
Although there are differences in the various employment legal systems around the world, I think there is a world of difference between being made redundant (losing the job because the position has disappeared) and being fired (where a replacement will fill your position). Particularly here in the UK, many people who would fall under the fired category agree to technically resign as this is deemed to be in the best interest of both parties.


In Belgium, if you really want to leave and you don't care about the stigma of being fired, it is better to be actually being fired.
You get a better severance package and you immediately are able to receive unemployment compensation from the government.
However, if you get fired for urgent reasons (for example making a big mistake or doing something illegal) you get considerably less.


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Good post Cody, though the situation is hypothetical for me - I hope my projection of my strict moral probity has always helped me avoid those situations. Either that or I'm just lucky!

One thing - it's toeing the line, as in obeying the rules at the start of a foot race, not towing the line as in pulling a barge or something. Sincere apologies for my pedantry.

Failing to learn and illegal activity (or pronounced procrastination / facebooking on the job) might be the cut and dried situations for me. Disobeying an order - I can see see how that could occur, but I guess we don't have orders, we have discussions about how to achieve things and agree the tasks we'll undertake.
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