10 Bonkers 'I’m Outta Here' Moments From New Employees

Work horror stories

Cheapism / DALL-E 3

Cheapism is editorially independent. We may earn a commission if you buy through links on our site.
Injury, compensation and man hands with insurance documents, legal contract and paperwork. Disability, accident and people in lawyer or attorney meeting for advice, agreement or policy report closeup
Jacob Wackerhausen/istockphoto

Everyone Has Their Breaking Point

Sometimes it can be hard to notice the red flags at a company you're interviewing with. The promise of a new job (and solid paycheck) can make us look past an uncomfortable moment, questionable practice, or hostile employer. But often, the red flags are impossible to ignore.

This collection of horror stories comes from an r/Ask thread where new employees shared their biggest "I'm outta here!" moments on the first day. These are cautionary tales, and might also make you feel a bit better about the lowest moments you've endured in your career. 

Cleaning the brown carpet with the vacuum cleaner

1. At Least They Made the Most Out of It

When Redditor u/Green420Basturd realized they'd happened upon a door-to-door salesperson job, they made quick work of taking full advantage of the job before they up and quit that same day. They wrote, "I interviewed for a retail sales position with one of those job placement companies and on my first day I realized it was a door-to-door vacuum cleaner salesman job based on commission only. I vacuumed my grandma's house with the display model they gave me while she made me French toast, then I quit."

Woman in rubber gloves with bucket of cleaning supplies ready to clean up
Andrii Zorii/istockphoto

2. There's a Fine Line Between Working Hard and Being Overworked

There are times when an employer might ask for extra help, and that could require working a bit harder and longer than expected. However, a crucial balance must be maintained. 

Take it from Redditor u/AgePractical6298, who wrote, "Cleaning houses. They gave me a quick tutorial on how they like the houses cleaned, since I would be cleaning alone, I wouldn’t clean any houses bigger then 1200 square feet. My first house was 3000 square feet and I had 2 hours to clean top to bottom. I got what I could do done in 2 hours. Boss called me to go back because customer wasn’t satisfied, I blocked the number."

Bossy Man

3. When They Threaten To Yell in Harmony, It's Time To Dip

Any boss that takes pride in talking down to or yelling at their employees is a boss that's managed to create a toxic work environment. So when you find yourself in the troubling predicament that this Redditor did, ditch that scene as quickly as you can. 

"Temp job right out of college. During the training phase I was told if I made an error I would get yelled at by him, his boss, his boss’s boss and the owner of the company. I assumed it was a joke and he didn’t laugh. I told him this was going to be a bad fit and walked."

For more job-related horror stories, please sign up for our free newsletters.

Chicken with pita sandwiches in a commercial refrigerator

4. It Sounds Like the Sandwich Shop Was on Its Way Out

Working in the food industry at any level is tough. Working in a sandwich shop that can't be bothered to follow food safety guidelines is a whole other problem. 

Redditor u/qveeroccvlt really went through the ringer. They wrote, "I was hired to work at a sandwich shop. I did an hour up front figuring out where things were and then I was told to go to the walk-in fridge to get something. The smell … my god. There was unwrapped food on the floor, open pails of stuff with no lids, rotten vegetables. It smelled like **** and looked like a dumpster. I gagged, took my apron off and just left."

Related: Restaurant Horror Stories That Will Ruin Your Appetite

Interior of metalworking factory workshop hangar. Modern industrial enterprise production

5. Working Endless Hours in Extreme Heat Shouldn't Be Taken Lightly

Look, our bodies can only endure so much stress before they literally begin to collapse. Working endless hours in a factory with blistering heat could drive plenty of people to quit on their first day. You'd just hope that the pay was at all decent. 

Redditor u/Trickery1688 wrote, "I work in a factory that gets pretty hot inside during the summer. Easily over 100 degrees inside on hot summer days. I have seen so many people quit their first day i can't even give you a number. Hundreds at this point for sure. We might as well only hire in the winter because new workers just can't take the heat while also having to learn a new job that's physically laborious."

Related: Abandoned American Factories That'll Give You Chills

Taxi service operator equipment

6. If Only Free Vacations Were Handed Out Like That

Ah yes, the early days of the internet. Those were wild and lawless times. Many unsuspecting folks ended up falling prey to the notorious "free vacation!" pop-up ads. 

Now imagine working in a call center to handle those ads like Redditor u/El-Viking. They wrote, "It was a call center answering phone calls from people getting pop up ads saying 'you've won a free vacation!' in the early days of the internet. I tried to follow the script for the first few calls but quickly realized it wasn't a 'free' vacation."

Related: Are Timeshares Worth It or a Total Scam?

Wendy's Restaraunt

7. Oh, To Have Been a Fly on the Wall in That Wendy's Establishment

Not all fast-food chains are going to operate smoothly across the board. It could be a matter of a terrible manager, or so much overturn that the folks working the machines and cashiers never have enough time to catch up. Based on this throwback story from Redditor u/atypical_lemur, it sounds like they had one of the more unfortunate experiences working at a Wendy's. 

They wrote, "When I was in college I quit a Wendy's the first night. This was in the mid '90s. I got hired and they asked could I start that night. I didn't have anything going on so ya, sure I'll be there 6-10. After not more than 30 minutes of training on the registers and drive through procedures I was told that I would have to watch the DT and Front End by myself for the rest of the night. After 7 there was literally 3 people in the store, me running the front end, a cook running the whole kitchen and a manager sitting in the office. 

At 10 when we closed I was told I wasn't allowed to leave until xyz are done, which I get as it was a closing shift, but that wasn't explained to me when I was hired or asked to work, I was asked to work 6-10 and I had class the next day. So, since I'm not a complete [slacker] (also young and didn't want to burn bridges, or was stupid or didn't know any better), I stayed until past midnight doing the closing stuffs. When we clocked out I told the manager I would not be back again. I'm not even sure if I ever went back to get a paycheck and I don't recall ever even filling out paperwork to be hired."

Homemade Fried Shredded Hashbrowns and Eggs

8. I Mean, Come on, Man

Nobody wants to watch their manager — the one who is supposed to keep the ship running vaguely in order — carelessly grab floor-dirtied hash browns and then proceed to serve those to customers. Hash browns, of all the foods! Is nothing sacred? 

Redditor u/DandelionsAreFlowers wrote, "Shoney's restaurant. Prepping for opening and saw the manager drop an entire pan of hash browns on the floor and then use the dustpan to scoop it up off the dirty kitchen floor back into pan and put it on the buffet. NOPE."

Tax 2024. Word Tax 2024 on calculator. Business and tax concept. Calculator, currency, dollar bills close up. Income Statement. paying the tax rate. Taxation, investment, taxes burden.
Boy Wirat/istockphoto

9. You'd Think They'd at Least Have Offered Some Kind of Training

Taxes aren't something that can be taken lightly. So when you have someone like this anonymous Redditor, who was on the frontlines of fielding all manners of tax questions from customers assuming they'd get expert help, you have a nightmare. Hopefully those poor customers didn't suffer any kind of fallout from having new hires being tasked with providing their "expertise." 

Of their experience, the Redditor wrote, "Taking calls for turbo tax at tax time with zero training or understanding of taxes and expected to Google and research that while on the phone. Nah."

Large industrial empty warehouse space

10. The Soulless Warehouse Vibe Isn't for Everyone

Unfortunately, none of this grim work story from Redditor u/zombiez87 is too surprising. They wrote, "Walked into an Amazon warehouse for training and noticed the dark atmosphere with no windows or anything. Just a large gloomy warehouse. I already deal with depression so driving 45 minutes there and 45 minutes back, 12 hour shifts at odd hours (overnight shifts) 4 days a week plus mandatory overtime, nope! Not for me! Felt like I’d be working somewhere that was a constant trigger for me. I lasted 5 minutes, literally."