Why you should not be afraid of a sack letter

  • “Getting fired hurts, regardless of the circumstances. But as with most everything in life, it can be an opportunity. You can't un-fire yourself, but you can choose your experience of being fired. You can find the blessings in the beast.” - Laura Simms

    Most employees, especially in the third world countries where unemployment rates are very high, dread being sacked. This is very understandable because getting another job after losing one may be quite difficult; just like it was, getting the first one.

    The fear of being sacked, however, has turned many employees into zombies. They practically take all sort of instructions from their bosses, hook, line, and sinker; just to protect their jobs.

    They are usually not allowed a say when taking critical decisions which they will be blamed for if such decisions eventually fail.

    Some employers frankly tell their staff: You are not paid to think, you are paid to listen to instructions, which is obviously the cause of lack of creativity and productivity at the workplace.

    Because of job scarcity, employees also adapt to the system and work like machines; always carrying instructions without their professional inputs or critique - all because they don’t want to be sacked.

    This is very dangerous!

    Being sacked does not mean you are a failure. Just ensure you are sacked for the right reason (s), and you may not know, such reasons could count as advantages for getting your next job.

    Employers sack for many reasons: an employee can be sacked due to incompetence (on the part of the employee or the employer), financial constraint (on the part of the employer), and so on.

    An employer that shuts you up; says you are not paid to think but to listen to instructions is a sheer demonstration of incompetence. If you get fired for speaking up on the right things concerning the development of the organization, then you get fired for the right reason.

    It is apt to quote Shawn Hunter, the President and Founder of Mindscaling, here:

    “Yes, you could lose your job for being inept, incompetent, missing deadlines and milestones, or simply failing to do the work. But you will not be fired for taking chances, and embracing risk and then accepting the responsibility that goes along with it. And if you are fired for taking an honest chance, with positive intention, and then owning the outcome, your boss is a coward, and your company is on the brink of irrelevance.”

    The danger of being afraid of a sack letter

    If you are afraid of sack letter, your tendency to grow in your chosen field will be very limited. Just because you want to please your boss, you carry out every instruction as spelt out even when you have better alternatives to getting things done. You will be shocked, the same boss whom you listened to blindly will one day fire you for the same reasons you were afraid to speak up - he might even accuse you of complacency.

    Your creativity level will be zero because you cannot try new methods of doing things on your own. You will never increase your productivity at work when you don't do things differently. Employees grow when they are given some level of freedom to do things on their own and take responsibility when such things succeed or fail.

    Thus, when you leave the company or you are eventually sacked, after all, it will be difficult for you to function well in saner establishments who are not interested in zombies but creative employees who can bring new things to the table. For such companies, measuring productivity at work is done by allowing employees to explore new ideas that could potentially push the company forward not by subjecting them to prescription.

    How to erase the fear of being sacked

    There are many ways an employee can follow to avoid being sacked on the basis of immaterial reasons. These ways do not mean though employing dubious means. They are practical and realistic strategies that would not only spare you for the present job but also take you through the huddles of career development - these are the essential things that recruiters look for when they hire.

    The number one thing is to continually upgrade your knowledge and skills. Don’t relax, knowledge is not static. Learn new ways of doing things; learn new tools, be up to date.

    Jessica Glazer, the Recruitment Director, Founder, and CEO of captures this well when she said: "The bigger an asset you become to an organization, the less likely they are to fire you.”

    Second: have confidence in your ability. Understand what you do very well and do not be afraid to tell your employer the right thing when you believe something goes wrong or is going wrong. If they are not ready to allow you to offer your expertise, they are not good for you, look for other opportunities and leave before they come with their sack letter.

    Three, understand that your expertise or academic/professional certificates are not customized for a specific company. If a company says no, you move on to others.

    As Paolo Coelho, the Brazilian lyricist and novelist said: "If you're brave enough to say goodbye, life will reward you with a new hello."

    The road is rough, but certainly, you can navigate it if you are adequately prepared and confident enough to do what you believe is right.

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