“Did I REALLY Sign Up For This?!” Moment: A Termination Gone Wrong

Posted May 16, 2018 in Latest News & Insights

By Leslie Newhall

In celebration of Did I REALLY Sign Up For This?! hitting shelves, we’ve invited members of The Roundtable community to share their own “did I really sign up for this?!” moments, which we’ll be sharing over the coming weeks. These are times when things have gone to sh*t (been there!), when they’ve thought that perhaps they aren’t cut out to be a leader (ditto!). One is so juicy the author even requested to remain anonymous! We hope you’ll enjoy the candour and vulnerability shown by these amazing leaders.

The organization I worked for was going through a huge restructure, and I was responsible for ensuring that the president knew the script for delivering a termination message to a very senior employee with 20 years of experience in a blue chip company. He was appalled that I would dare to ask him to practice his delivery on me and chastised me, saying he had many years of experience and was doing this before I was born!

Our employee had not even fully entered the room when he said, in true Donald Trump fashion, “Name, you’re fired!”  

She thought he was joking, laughed, and said “Yeah, right. So what’s the meeting really about?” Then she looked at me and realized when I picked my jaw up off the floor that it was true. I asked him to leave and she and I laughed until we cried. I then spent 30 minutes with her reminiscing about our work together, reviewing her package, and taking our time given the appalling message delivery, and through it all she was so gracious.

I still cringe, even as I’m writing this, thinking I did NOT sign up for this!

Want to share your own “did I REALLY sign up for this?!” moment? Email us here. Don’t have your own copy of Did I REALLY Sign Up For This?! yet? Head over here to grab one!


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