Your Best Stories Of Leaving Nightmare IT Jobs

Your Best Stories Of Leaving Nightmare IT Jobs

We asked readers about exiting an awful IT job. Whether you quit in a blaze of glory or were laid off in ridiculous circumstances, these are your getting-the-hell-out stories.

Images via quickmeme, imgur

bigPixel wrote:

This wasn’t really how I quit, but the underhanded method the company I worked for used to lay off a bunch of their IT people.

Monthly fire drill came around, we all exited the building to our allocated assembly areas as usual, and then the HR department came around and took our badges and told us we were no longer employed, and that our colleagues would collect our belongings and bring them out to the parking lot. This was in England, where there are supposed to be laws to prevent that sort of bullshit, but just like anywhere, when you’re a large enough company, you can find ways to circumvent any law and screw your employees.

UpIrons wrote:

I was in college working part-time for a law firm and supporting AS100 transfers and doing windows 95 support (yes I’m old). One of said As100 transfers didn’t work right but I thought it had so thought nothing of it until later in the day the head lawyer called me into his office and berated me, calling me an idiot and a liar in front of several other lawyers and while on the phone with the bank’s IT dept who were basically like “It’s not a big deal, we can do that transfer over again”. Thankfully one of the other lawyers actually stood up for me which was cool, but I knew my days were going to be numbered and I vowed never to be in that situation again. This law firm also fired my fiance’ about 2 weeks prior to that incident and my trust with them was shattered after about 3 years of working there.

That incident is what prompted me to apply for jobs and luckily I got a job (CompuServe) but I was getting married and going on a honeymoon literally 2 weeks before CompuServe wanted me to start so I didn’t feel like I could put in a notice and still trust them to honour my vacation pay for the honeymoon. I felt kind of bad about it but on the day that I decided to quit, it just so happened that their billing system went down (you know how lawyers are about billing) and the head lawyer came in frantic saying like “thank God you’re back from your honeymoon, we need your help” blah blah blah and praising me up and down.

I literally ignored him, went directly to my supervisors office and handed him my resignation letter and walked out the door and never looked back! There were several phone calls that day from other lawyers in the firm but I never called them back. The firm went out of business within a year after that and it couldn’t have happened to a better bunch of arseholes honestly. Ugh, if only CompuServe had lasted a bit longer for me… But it all worked out in the long run. I have a hell of a career now and can’t complain.

It’s not cool to leave without a notice but sometimes it feels pretty damn good!

aja175 wrote:

Waaaaaaaaay back when I was in a callcenter doing cancellations for Prodigy, shortly after they got the internet. I’d decided I was done being told Thursday when I was working the next week and rarely had the same shift 2 days in a row. It took a couple hours to work myself up to it but that was the day I told a customer I’d credit them a quarter so they could call someone who cares, hung up and walked out the door.

My next job was doing DSL support for GTE, then Verizon bought them. They fired everybody in the callcenter, for some reason I stuck it out to the bitter end. On the last day when we were closing up shop and basically just bouncing anyone who called over to a VZ callcenter. I walked in the door, dropped couple hits of acid and had the most fun I’d ever had at work.

Iridium wrote:

I’ll begin with the end. About three months before I left, my mentor there (and one of the real reasons I stayed, I was learning real shit from him) announced his departure and suggested I GTFO too. I didn’t immediately: his leaving meant I was the most senior IT guy (aside from the manager) at the company and that meant some interesting times. Having been the mentee of the old man, though, meant I was the go to guy for everything. Literally, in fact, all but one of IT’s functions was my responsibility: the servers, Exchange, AD, the network, the firewalls, down to and including the office’s keycard system. The one function I didn’t get was the backup system. The manager didn’t want to be *completely* fucked if I left.

So they backfilled another Sr. Admin and stuck him in my office with me. He was dense as fuck: instructions down to a basic level (“Call X at the datacenter.” “OK so I’m emailing Y?” “… No, call X. He’s on duty. His number’s on the list taped to your monitor.” “I don’t see Y’s number here.” “NO, man, X.” “I don’t think X is in today?” “OK know what, I got it.”) were difficult for him. He also spent a lot of time on the phone with his wife, calling her “Baby” in the creepiest way I can imagine. And on top of that, he openly took calls from recruiters and talked salary, with me right there. I told the boss of the difficulties here, he encouraged me to stick with it.

After three weeks I reached out to some former-coworker contacts who got me a job in short order with another company (that has its own fucked up issues). I gave notice, spent two weeks diligently documenting the SHIT out of every last function I performed on a daily basis and uploading them to the admin team’s Sharepoint server used as a knowledgebase. I transitioned this off to a couple of other people, including the guy who was in charge of the backup system.

We skip ahead a few months. The new job is going very well, everything is far more reasonable, and the pay is finally a little more realistic. In this time, although I’d stuck with the prior company’s IM system, I hadn’t heard a peep. Until one day, backup guy pings me. He asks for the passwords to the network gear. I told them it was in my documentation. He asked again. I said I didn’t remember (I can, 8 years later, still recite them all). He said the Sharepoint server died and all the data was gone.

And that the backups hadn’t been happening.

And that the other guy I’d been training left a couple weeks after I had.

And the manager, who also had this info, had been fired (because three senior admins had quit in a few months).

I told him sorry, I couldn’t remember.

About a year after that, the company got acquired by another one in town that was known for buying companies and gutting them for customers. One of the coworkers who had stuck around through the whole process and got hired by the new company reached out to me to explain that basically the company was unable to function, at all, after I’d left. Servers went out left and right, customers left in droves, they couldn’t hire a competent new admin for anything.

On the one hand, I feel slightly bad about that. On the other hand, hell of an ego-stroke, right?

Big Ol Daddy wrote:

I worked as a supply head guy in a warehouse for a brokerage back when they didn’t have inventory control or the like. I set up most of the database stuff on the fly and I thought was doing OK. We just found out we were having a smaller human and this company was just featured for its innovative scheduling around family. Most of what I did could be home based but I was told nope, won’t work. Kind of bummed but put in my notice.

The big boss was an impeccable dresser, odd for warehouse work. He had just spent the morning showing any and all his new Italian leather loafers. I had just spend the morning unloading three days of Burger King into the toilet. It went down but it was a shaky compromise and I knew the next to use it was rolling the dice. It was the boss, as expected. He went into the stall, did his business and the complex shook as the toilet exacted its foul vengeance. He screamed about his loafers as the water came pouring out under the door. It was a good last day.

Your Best Stories of Leaving Nightmare IT Jobs

Julstin Culmo wrote:

First, I didn’t quit, I was technically “laid off” and second, I was put on board with my first company because of my (recently graduated) background in Engineering, not IT. I was more or less the production engineer, but as we wear many hats, I was unofficially put in charge of the server equipment, as well as software, computer repairs, bug removal, training, and I also had to deal with the delicate issue of people’s personal use on the internet (Not that I would know anything about that).

Our business manager handled all expenses; she was the kind of person who made herself important and “solved” all problems by simply squawking the same line over and over like a parrot “Stop spending money! Stop spending money!” If a small Dell server costs $US5,000, she couldn’t wrap her head around it, because her e-machine at home only cost $US400. This carried through to my Engineering job when I had to purchase machine parts for production and I’d have to battle over spending a few hundred bucks to repair a half-million dollar piece of equipment

Well, towards the end of my time there, an older computer (running Win98 in 2010) reached the very end of its life, HDD failed and they couldn’t figure out why I couldn’t just go out to buy a 5GB ATA 100 Drive. This machine was absolutely necessary to certify products so we could ship to our customers. I told them “Give me the card, I’m going out and getting what we need.” Fed up, I got a basic $US600 desktop that would handle the hardware, I also got a few other things on my list, a new HDD for our now FULL Dell dimension server, some needed cables for our switch, and some other very basic stuff, I can’t remember. I spent hours getting the desktop installed and tested, right back into production by the next morning.

The only thing they were interested in was my receipt. Despite a full expense report and justifications on each line, they couldn’t figure out how I spent the better part of (gasp) A Thousand Dollars, on server/client equipment. At this point, I should mention that our revenue was around $US2M and the managers typically would go out and spend $US400 on lunch. Now, granted, I did go over my manager’s head, I was still authorised to make any necessary purchases.

Well, after my “big spending” adventure, the atmosphere in the company changed. I was soon excluded from any important design meetings and I knew my time had come to an end. I called it right to the hour they would come in and let me go. I later find out that the equipment I purchased was all installed by our other (outside) IT guy. They even had me on edge for 2 weeks because the big book of software went missing right after I left. Turns out one of the managers took it home for personal use and then brought it back.

furious_hangover wrote:

Can I tell you how I’d like to quit my terrible IT job? OK then, thanks. It would go something like this:

I’d walk into my CEO’s office and let tell him that I think his unabashedly easy approach on lying to our customers is why his company will never be trusted. I would then remind him that his personal life, which has been gossiped about plenty enough to know that he struggles to be honest or caring for his immediate family, is the disaster it deserves to be, and that he caused it by being a self righteous arsehole to everyone and anyone that has come into contact with him.

I would then walk into several other offices to let them know that their white, suburbanite, racist, homophobic agenda is embarrassing, which is why no one truly respects them, and that living behind the high school and college party years is why they will never be looked at as responsible or respectable parents, let alone interesting and unique individuals, and that I feel sorry for their children. Those kids will grow up thinking that being racist, homophobic, over weight, obnoxiously boisterous to make up for the fact that, in regular conversation, you don’t have anything interesting to offer, so you choose to be loud and overbearing, will be the way you’re supposed to be as a white republican living in the good old United States of America.

Then I’d light my cubical on fire, pull my dick through my open fly, and, no hands, urinate all over the place as I walk out through the front doors smiling.

Oh, this sounds like everyone else’s job?

What a nightmare.

Your Best Stories of Leaving Nightmare IT Jobs

The Time Police Wrote:

When layoffs gutted my Engineering department (think 40 engineers and support staff down to 10), I was able to dodge being canned and move over into our in-house IT. Our 200+ head organisation had been running two hardworking techs ragged for months, and they were trying to reign in the insane OT these guys were racking up.

A month in, we are given notice that 40 new project managers and 22 new business analysts are going to be joining in waves over the next 4-6 weeks.

Our senior lead had to take off for a kid in the hospital, and left us peons in charge…

So we are setting up to clone 80 dell workhorses, and can’t figure out which of the 20 cloned HDD’s to use. The notes are cryptic (i.e. Clone – Dell 3/9 out/enc.) We settled on the one that looked newest (Clone – Dell 6/4 – HFI). We spend the next week running them in and out like an assembly line while dealing with all of the incidentals of the job.

All this time, we never once thought to call the Lead (he had his hands full), and besides, we KNEW we were doing it right.

Fast forward to the next week. Some of these people have already started, and now calls are coming in that “offensive imagery and videos” are appearing on the company network, and people are complaining about porn on their machines. It takes about an hour to see that the porn on the network was being synced FROM the terminals…

We call the lead, who immediately asks if we used Clone – Dell 5/5 – NBI (Newest Base Image). We say no, we used this other random one that was stored separately, like one would think a master copy would be. Nope, we cloned 80 computers with a drive Held For Investigation by a guy who used a VPN to DL super-sketchy porn (think incest, vomit, scat, sleep, and underage candids) all day long instead of working.

Lead lost his shit and left the hospital to come and try to fix it. Senior partners are having conniptions about liability and all that. I look over, and my co-worker is filling his messenger bag with office supplies, tools, and parts. He smiles and says, “Quit or Fired? You have about 30 minutes to decide.” He shakes my hand, grunts his bag up on his shoulder, and just walks out. I see him go to the parking lot, get in his car, and drive away.

After some soul-searching, I realised that there was no coming out of this clean, and followed suit. Best decision of my life, as my next job paid waaaay better…as DBM for a big porn site.

Interesting note: Everybody I met working at the porn site wore formal business attire and would do all kinds of logical/philosophical/moral contortions to avoid specifically talking about the actual product they produced/sold. No girly posters, no frat-bros, mostly female staff. Cognitive dissonance doesn’t even scratch the surface.

gordol wrote:

Last year, I took on a new temp / contract position for a major IT service company at one of their client locations, in what was essentially a hardware break-fix dispatch position. It was supposed to be a step up from the tier one help desk jobs I had been bouncing between for the previous few years, including two 1-year stints on the help desk at that client company, itself a major player in its own field of business.

The “team” I was joining was comprised of two employees, one contractor, the office boss and assistant-office-boss. One of the employees had been promoted, and the contractor was supposed to transition to employee. I was being brought on to backfill that contractor spot. I was supposed to get training on the hardware systems I had no experience on, no big deal.

Except that the one I was supposed to take over for consistently refused to train me on anything, and got upset with me when I was trying to do the parts of my job that I already knew because it was bringing HER ticket volume down.

Except that I found the work environment to be toxic, too much animosity between office mates. I consistently found empty coffee cups at my desk, sometimes clean, sometimes used. When there were trash buckets at every desk. More than once, paper balls or aeroplanes were thrown at my head. My snacks would disappear when I wasn’t there. People on both teams in the too-small room (we had been moved to another, smaller, office a week after I started) were downright RUDE. I mentioned one of my hobbies to the boss, and then he would consistently ask everyone else in the office if they were interested in joining me (I sing in a men’s acapella chorus) despite my repeated requests to stop.

Except that the contractor who was supposed to move to employee kept failing the drug test and so the company would/could not hire her, but also not fire her.

Then they reorganized the office, rendering my spot “redundant” and canned me – while I was out sick. And didn’t have the decency to let me pick up my stuff in person. I was already working on my resume, so I wasn’t all that upset to leave that place in my past. The temp agency was decent about it, and got me some day work a few times until I got another gig.

And in retrospect, the timing turned out to be pretty good, as it left me available for a three-month project elsewhere, that rolled into an open-ended project at another facility in the same organisation, that, two months ago, turned into a permanent hire. I’m back on a tier one help desk, (strangly enough, the same one I was on as a temp immediately prior to that job-from-hell) but now I’ve got the traction to advance vertically.

Your Best Stories of Leaving Nightmare IT Jobs

Jungle Boi wrote:

New Director of IT started – put me on as a programming resource to a guy who’d literally suffered brain damage after a fall during Hurricane Wilma. He’d been working on a “deviated cost” project for 3 years and not gotten it out the door. He shot me over a spec – some data massaging – and I got the routine done, I worked remotely that week. The spec was flawed so the end result was, also. We went into the weekly Senior Staff meeting wherein the new Dir told all dozen or so there (that Id known for years) that there was no progress on the project because Id “been out sick” – right as the meeting ended. I told him to wait for a moment and close the door. He looked me in the eye and said, “You don’t understand office politics, you can’t always tell the truth.” I got up, walked into the President’s office and stated that the Dir had lied, the spec was flawed and tendered my 2-weeks notice.

PixelJunkie wrote:

I worked at a place where the term “vacation” was used for the time between when you chewed through the restraints and when they caught you. I found a new job closer to home as a part-time contractor then got hired on full time. I’m still at the new place. No matter how bad things get here it’s not as bad as the last place.

hercules q. einstein wrote:

I watched this happen from my desk: I used to work at US News & World Report, which is owned by media tycoon Mort Zuckerman. Who is a world- class assface (he calls his employees “the overhead”). His assistant back then used to work for the Queen of Mean, Leona Helmsley, and said that Leona was way easier to deal with than Mort.

Anyway, we didn’t have to see his stupid face that often because he is based in NYC and we were in DC. But he was a nightmare when he was around. One day, he screwed up his computer and called for an IT guy. The guy showed up and Mort told him he had three minutes to fix the problem or he was fired. I was sitting there with my mouth gaping open like a moron because I couldn’t believe what I was hearing. Mort hovered over the IT guy, looking at his watch, berating the poor dude the whole time. Oh, while blowing cigar smoke all over the place. Of course, three minutes later, he yells at the guy to get the fuck out because he’s fired. I felt so awful, the guy looked like he was going to cry (and he had only started recently).

I went to the top editor in our office to tell him, and he just laughed and said, “don’t worry, we’ll just hire him back tomorrow and mort will never know”. And that’s exactly what happened.

itguy26 wrote:

I was hired on at a well established startup as the sole IT support engineer. With multiple certifications and years under my belt, I came with the promise that I would have a team to lead. Soon after I started I realised that my manager knew nothing about IT but swore new shiny objects and operating systems were the only way. If I dared question the decision to upgrade the whole company to the newest OS on the day of a realease I would get a stern talking to in a meeting. This lead to multiple “check-ins” a day and questioning my every move. Literally, I had my email swept through one day because it looked too “messy” and that my grammar wasn’t always up to standards (even though I have a Bachelor’s in English).

I worked many 12 hour days and supported everything IT for a 100+ employees, including multiple new hire configurations and trainings a week. I asked countless times when I would have my own team, with the answer always being “we are looking into it.”Eventually I was told they were going to just hire another counterpart and keep my salary where it was. The final straw was when I was given notice that a huge project was due on the exact weekend I told my manager months ahead I would be out bc my family and gf were planning something for my birthday. I put out my resume and got hired at a large firm within a week. Put in my two weeks, spent two weeks teaching a temp everything I built for the company and then got the hell out right before the big project weekend. They called me that weekend for help and I told them I could give remote advice after my party for a very large consulting fee, which they turned down. I still have nightmares from that place and possibly some PTSD ( not really) but thankfully love my new company.

KatetofTacos wrote:

I got this part time job, really close to home that was looking for someone to do bookkeeping, light admin work and provide backup IT support. The head (and only) IT person trained me on all the duties so I could jump in and help as needed.

Two weeks later, the head IT person was fired and suddenly I was performing all of her duties as well as mine. So now I’m in charge of redesigning the website and SharePoint (because she wanted to fire the company that was managing all of this), managing the network, and providing IT support along with all of the duties I was actually hired to do. Boss increases my hours to 40 hours a week. I figure I can manage this, and I need the income, so I don’t argue.

After I launch the new website and SharePoint the boss immediately cuts my hours in half despite the fact that I had explained to her that, since she didn’t have a company managing these things anymore, it was going to require more man hours. So now she wants me doing the job of what was two people and a hosting/IT company in 20 hours. This proves to be physically impossible of course. Next thing I know, I’m getting gaslighted about mistakes I didn’t actually make and I’m being micromanaged to death by someone who, frankly, has no idea how to do what I am doing.

Fast forward about two months to my boss telling me that she thinks the role has “grown too big” and she needs to hire someone to handle all the admin duties and provide backup IT support… Yeah. I see where this is going. So boss hires the new admin (who is older and has no tech background at all) and tells me to teach her stuff like how to write macros and recover files from a failed hard drive. All while simultaneously telling me how much I’m messing everything up and that maybe this wasn’t working out.

Yeah. I quit. Effective immediately. Said that, since I was making so many mistakes, I didn’t want to continue to be a liability to the company.

They were STILL calling me on a weekly basis almost five months later begging me for help and offering me about 3x what I was making to come back. No way in hell, lady. I value my sanity more than your money. I actually blocked the office number and boss lady’s cell phone, and then the new admin started calling me from HER cell about two days later. I hadn’t heard from them in a while and moved on with my life… until three days ago when I got a text from the NEW new admin begging me for help. Sweet Jesus. I’m going to have to change my number.

Your Best Stories of Leaving Nightmare IT Jobs

JamTime wrote:

While working for a fashion retailer a number of years ago, we started to run out of capacity at our fulfillment center. With the exception of the CEO, all of the senior managers decided it was time to move from the legacy system and building, into a state of the art facility 30 minutes south of the current location. At the time the CEO was not interested in discussing expansion of the warehouse.

At first the project was great. There was collaboration between business groups and we tackled issues that had plagued the company for years. There was a consensus that the business as a whole should move away from a heavily customised IT solution towards best practice requiring less customisation.

Then the CEO got involved.

A decision needed to be made whether to go live as planned in late summer, or to delay until after the holiday season, as there had been some delays because of software issues and interface design. Rather than push the project timeline to accommodate some of the setbacks, the CEO pushed the project forward, before all of the unit testing could be completed. 8M units of inventory were moved into the building over 14 days, 600 additional staff was hired (usually the warehouse operated with 250), and all operations were moved to the warehouse.

At this point the CEO moved into the building. Literally moved in and didn’t leave for 63 days. A shower was built, additional fridges were brought in and one of the offices was turned into a bedroom.

It was requested that we also work a similar pace to the CEO, which was roughly 20 hour stints.

At some point during all of this nonsense, someone missed some critical piece of information and when the CEO asked who was responsible for it, my name was thrown out. I woke that Thursday at 4:30a (after getting home at 1:00a) to incoherent yelling. I conceded that I would be there as soon as possible.

By the time I arrived the night operations team had been worked into a fervor by the CEO. I walked into an incoherent rant about racism, elitism, and the wage gap. His speech suggested that we excluded minorities from the management team (two of ten were white males), that we excluded women from the management team (my direct report and the head of the department was a female), and that I made too much money. He proceeded to go around the room asking everyone what they made while repeating I made 6 figures (I did not). All of this was capped off by punching a hole in the wall less than 6″ from a coworker’s face.

I quit that afternoon.

In an ironic twist, after several other people were quit or fired, I was asked to come back as a consultant to help with unit testing and process optimization.

Matt the Iconoclast wrote:

I recently quit my job with a Healthcare IT company in South East England (not London), the commute was as much as 3.5 hours a day and 9 hours in the office, so far, so gruelling. That made quitting easy.

But that was not all.

This company had it’s own proprietary software, a good 5 different programs in total, so despite my certifications in IT I had no experience in using the software I was supposed to assist with.

You’d think that with this being the case they would provide training for someone contracted to log and troubleshoot inbound calls from rushed, frustrated end users calling from hospitals, hospices and care homes to a level where basic end user breakdowns could be addressed, even to a First Line level, but no.

Training was maybe an hour or two of someone taken from their busy normal working schedule rushing through a powerpoint showing a test version of the program, very little input from the trainee but the odd nod-along.

Answering the phones and logging the calls was fine on a per-call basis, however, what was far from ok, and this tied into the sparse training was the hideously low staffing levels. Seriously; a UK wide and some EU customer base of people dealing with emergency medical care, and the sick and dying simply cannot have a First Line team of FOUR people! Including barely trained me, and lunchtime periods staggered over three hours meant even less during those hours, and that’s not even accounting for when people called in sick…

So in summary, low to non-existent training, too few staff equaled an unmanageable workload which I wasn’t equipped to deal with, and it wasn’t worth getting up at 5/6am for a commute plagued with wailing children every day. I tried to find somewhere local to my workplace to rent to at least mitigate the commute, however that resulted in a naked homeowner offering me a reduced rental rate in return for nude autoerotic performances.

notarypublic wrote:

This is a strange one, from start to finish.

I was in college and was working temp jobs to make ends meet. There was a generic IT job listed at a warehouse that did some light parts assembly for a tractor manufacturer across the street. I beat out 11 applicants to get the role, for reasons yet unknown at the time due to my interest in “photography.”

When I showed up to work the first day, I was given the tour of the warehouse – what was once several distinct buildings at one time had been cobbled together into one large warehouse with several dividing walls. My “office” was a former garage (roof with shingles included) in one corner. The crux of the job was that the assemblers would pull the wrong parts to send to the factory across the street – two gears might be in bins next to each other, of only marginally different sizes and very similar serial numbers. 1×1/4th” labels were too small to tell parts apart, so they wanted someone to create picture labels for each bin to reduce the stocking errors. All 5,500 parts.

Each day I would take a picture of a part, match it to a label, type in an old terminal from the 80’s to access the part database and pull description and title information, and add it to the excel spreadsheet where my growing database of parts was living. Being sub-contractors with no IT department to speak of, their mandate was that large printed labels be created by hand as excel spreadsheets, printed out and laminated, and fixed with zipties to the bins. Repeat the entire process again for each and every part.

Realising the scope of the task ahead of me, I spent nights and weekends developing an excel macro that would take a list of parts from a spreadsheet, import and resize a corresponding image, and print out the labels to be laminated. I went from making 5 labels an hour to 50, management was amazed, and suddenly I was asked to meet with the development team at the factory across the street.

My hacked together solution was so impressive to them that they asked if I would be interested in someday travelling to their plants across the country (and potentially world) to duplicate the label making process elsewhere. Job descriptions were drafted, an offer extended – as a college student I was star-struck. Until I found out that they were expecting me to perform this service at the same rate that they were paying their janitor ($US14/hr).

I left my excel macro and instruction pamphlet with them when I gave my two weeks notice. I got a phone call a month later that the macro had broken and they were hoping I could fix it for free. I declined, and the whole operation fell apart shortly thereafter. Last time I checked, the warehouse was closed and the factory had moved overseas.

Your Best Stories of Leaving Nightmare IT Jobs

SamBel wrote:

Its a NASDAQ listed multi national public IT company. I worked there more than 2years. I spent 100s of nights at office to meet the deadlines. I completed all the required things to go for the next level designation. But the the Account manager removed my name from the promotions list to balance his account budget to show to his reporting manager his performances are good, I just gave my resignation.


I have two stories:

First, I worked as a call-center tech for IT support. Dealing with 100 stupid calls a day that were usually ‘have you tried rebooting it?’ kind of problems, and we even had an abbreviation that we used a lot in notations for things like that. ‘PEBKAC’ (Problem Exists Between Keyboard And Chair)

I had helped one person out, and they actually asked to speak to my supervisor to compliment my friendly demeanour and quick resolution of their problem. I was sitting on my desk at my cubicle, listening to my supervisor as the customer blew sunshine up my arse, when the call floor manager walked around. She told me to go home and change my shoes, because they weren’t allowed by the dress code. I was wearing pair of Chuck Taylor All-Stars with my khaki’s and polo-esque shirt.

I pulled the employee handbook out of my desk, and found the dress code page, and it simply said ‘no open toed shoes’. I pointed that out to her, and pointed out that my Chuck’s didn’t have open toes.

“Well go home and change them anyway…because I said so.” She told me, and I responded, “I’m getting a compliment call…a client was so impressed with my service that they wanted to tell my boss what a good job I’m doing, and you are sending me home because you don’t like my shoes?!?!”


My super handed me my headset back, and told the customer exactly what had happened while they were talking to my super, and that if she sent me home I was not going to come back. My super, and his boss, the call floor manager were both looking at me with their jaws open wide as I told the client, and them as much.

‘So, do I need to go home?” I asked. “Yes,” She replied.

“Mr. Customer, you should take your business elsewhere, if they treat their employees like this, you can only imagine what they do to customers…..and I quit.”

She had the rent-a-cop escort me as I danced my way out of the building.

The Second tale is an IT job and not an IT job at the same time.

I worked for a network owned television station as a Master Control Operator. It was a fancy title for the television version of a radio station’s DJ. When I started it was video tapes in machines, and we upgraded to a networked digital file server. My IT experience made me one of the logical choices for helping to install the thing.

After it was up and running, they decided to lay everyone with my job title off, and remotely control the TV station in Birmingham from Miami.

They were pretty good about it, and gave us a healthy severance package.

All of the other former MCO’s got together in the control room when the last operator officially signed off and we handed control over to Miami. As soon as that was done, a case of beer appeared and we all cracked one open, as we started taking bets on how long before something screwed up.

It was the very first commercial break, and I lost $US5.

The Station Manager rushed into the control room, in a panic because there was dead air on the screen and demanded that we do something about it.

“We don’t work here anymore, remember, ya’ll laid us off….call Miami.”

We all filed out, with shit-eating grins on our faces as the Station Manager had a come-apart.

Your Best Stories of Leaving Nightmare IT Jobs

Scammm wrote:

I worked as a software developer for a food service company. It was a family owned business and had terrible management. I really liked my manager, but he had enough and finally quit. After seeing people getting fired day after day and watching all the new business ventures continue to underperform, I was ready to leave. Having just had a child and dealing with the life changes that brings, I tried to keep some stability and stuck it out for a while. I mentioned OSHA violations and got aggressively responded to.

The last straw was when the CIO decided to put me on a performance improvement plan. He wrote me up for the exact things he and his friends were doing and decided to assign to me a few personal growth projects. One was to read 7 Habits of Highly Effective People. That book was essentially a chronicle of the CIO’s failures as a person. The hypocrisy was comical. I decided to take one of the standing offers I had from my job search and put in my notice the same day they wanted me to sign the PIP. It was April Fools day. Best career move I ever made.

Codiferous wrote:

I worked the phones for Comcast’s internet support. ‘Nuff said.

EffingJediMaster wrote:

My first real IT job was for a small company that had their own hardware and software for a pharmacy program they had developed. The company had 2 partners, one a true code writer, the other was the “marketing” partner.

I was much younger at the time and the job involved a lot of travelling across the state and overnight stays. I had 2 young children and after 18 months of salary work, 50 hours a week witb no raise, my patience with the place was thin. The one partner was a religious fanatic and conspiracy theorist. He would go on about contrails from planes, and government conspiracies. It was painful to listen to and was a stressful workplace for me, but I had a wife and kids to support. On top of everything during this time, we had a house fire and had lost just about everything and were displaced while our house was being gutted and remodeled.

The final straw was coming back after being horribly sick for two days to find out that my manager and the marketing partner had scheduled me to be out of town for the entire weekend to fix something that they could well have done while I was sick, on a weekend that I had already been on a calendar for me not to be on call or available. At this point, still sick, no raise and dealing with this shitbag company, I had enough.

I walked to my desk, packed my personal belongings into a box. Then I walked into the one partners (coder) and told him he was really cool and I would miss working with him. He gave me a perplexed look as I immediately walked across the hall to the other partner’s office looked him the eye and told him “Fuck you. Fuck this bullshit job, fuck your bullshit conspiracy theories. I quit, good luck trying to find someone else to put up with your ridiculous fucked up bullshit.”

I grabbed my shit and walked out.

6 months later that partner asked me to come back, twice. I told him no the first time, and the second time to lose my email address. The last I heard they were still in business (I don’t know how) and that the one cool partner had been bought out and no longer was associated. Fred, if you read this, I would love to hear from you. Lol

umataro42 suggested we sum up with this Psych gif about quitting your job:

Your Best Stories of Leaving Nightmare IT Jobs

Have an anecdote to add on the subject at hand? Considering throwing something down on your boss’s desk as we speak? Tell us about it in the comments.

This article originally appeared on Gizmodo Australia


  • I worked for a bank a long time ago and had written most of the software used in several of their trading offices. I gave a month’s notice and spent most of it diligently finishing off material, doing clean-up and extra documentation (it was my baby after all and I wanted to leave it in a good state). On my final day, there was no acknowledgement of all the work I’d done.
    A few months later they called me to ask for some extra work to be done on it. I quoted a modest hourly rate (it should have been more as I was quite busy in my new job), but they were shocked that I wouldn’t come back and do it for free.

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