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BaileyCatts
05-16-2010, 08:06 AM
How did it turn out? I typed out some thoughts, but everyone else covered it. I hope it turned out for the better!

Not good. I think I am going to get fired. When I went back on TH, I barely had time to change my shoes and my boss and HR came to my desk and said "can we talk". They took me to a conferene room and said it was a "serious violation of our PVP Principles", they cut off my access to a forms system (uh, all it does is complete forms, I don't know what they thought I could do with that) and told me they changed all the locks in my bosses cube! They said they have discussed this with the VP and the President of our section! The HR person said that 'trust and integrity are our most important values and there is no where I can move you to' (what?). I was so shocked I could not say anything. I barely got out a "it was a mistake" and and they left me alone to "compose myself". They told me I was being sent home for the next two days on paid administrative leave while they investigated (uhm, this happned on May 5, its now May 13 and they haven't investiagted yet? Or was it because I had my laptop with me when I was out May 10-11-12? And why would they have not taken it from me on and done all this on May 7 when they knew I was out for the next 3 days?) and they would call me on Friday. They took my laptop from me.

I was hysterical all day Thursday, begged my sister to take off work and stay with me on Friday. We waited all day for that call .... ALL DAY .... they never called!!! I don't understand why they didn't call! Even if they are not done "investigating" yet, shouldn't they have at least called me and said "we are still looking into this situation, you are still on paid leave, we will contact you on Monday?? They didn't call at all!!! So now I don't even know what to do on Monday? Do I get up like normal and get dressed for work and then call them right before I leave the house to see if I am allowed to come to work? Do I just show up to work? I know I have no rights here, but wouldn't the courtsey thing to do would be to at least effing call me on Friday and tell me SOMETHING instead of letting me sit here all weekend stressed about it even more!?! I've heard nothing from them since 9:30am on Thursday!

I had finally calmed down a little because my sister/BIL think maybe that's a good thing. Their first concern was a security breech. They don't know what you did so they are looking at your computer to see if you sent anything to outsiders (which I did not). And that maybe now they are stuck in they don't know what to do. That maybe they are discussing with legal what to do? That maybe I won't get fired and maybe just moved out of my job? They also think maybe they are talking to legal to see what would my response be and what would be the best option to make sure I don't do anything like sue or something, so maybe try to determine some kind of severance package? Why didn't they call me on Friday at all!!!

What do you think? Do you think I am going to get fired? The bottomline is that my boss did not know I had access to his email, I was in it, he saw me. Those are the facts. Do you think I am going to get fired and all they are doing now is determining there are no criminal charges they can file against me (like if I was sending stuff to outsiders, which I did not!!!)??

I have worked there for 22 years!!!! Yes, I admit to having an attitude problem and I don't get along with the other girls, and people think I am 'unapproachable' when I am not. I am just very very introverted so people think I'm a bytch. Frankly I don't talk to people unless they talk to me. Yes, I have a sucky personality, I admit it. But I am a good, hard worker, I show up on time for work every day (unlike the other girls who seem to get away with showing up whenever they want), I do my job, I do it well, I get good performance reviews, I was even rated a 1 (the best) in 2008! Am I really going to get fired over this??????

Angelskates
05-16-2010, 08:29 AM
After 22 years, could they be looking for a reason, especially if you don't get along with your coworkers?

It certainly sounds like you shouldn't have given yourself access to your boss' email. I think you could be fired for that. If you go to another meeting, make sure you can point out all of your good work, WITHOUT comparing yourself to your coworkers. You're a good worker because you're a good worker, not because your coworkers are late etc. Are you doing anything about the attitude problem you know you have? I think I would find someone who has an attitude problem unapproachable. It takes more than being a hard worker who shows up on time to be a good worker, a good worker also has a good attitude towards working, including with those you're working with - whether you like them or not.

BigB08822
05-16-2010, 08:30 AM
I hope it all works out. Did you get a chance to better explain yourself and what happened and how and why you lied at first? It sounds like it is too late now, but did they give you a chance in the meeting? I don't know what you should do about Monday. That is a very weird situation and they should have called, knowing you would be in limbo come Monday morning if they didn't contact you. If it were me, I would just call first thing Monday morning. I wouldn't show up and be embarrassed and not allowed in the building or something. I am so sorry all of this happened, it sounds like a lot of things happened in just the right way for this to all go wrong. I guess that is life and all you can do is learn from what happened so it wont happen again. 22 years at one place is a very long time, hopefully they will take this into account and just put you on some kind of probation or something.

BaileyCatts
05-16-2010, 08:43 AM
Did you get a chance to better explain yourself and what happened and how and why you lied at first? It sounds like it is too late now, but did they give you a chance in the meeting? .

I was too shocked to say anything. I never never never thought they would send me home on paid administrative leave, remove my systems access, change my bosses locks! I couldn't say anything! I couldn't move! I couldn't even form words in my head! All I could say was "am I going to get fired" and she said "yes that is a strong possiblity", I still coudn't say anything until I barely got out "it was a mistake" when they left me in the room. I sat there for almost an hour and could barely even breath, I couldn't move, they sent the nurse up from Health Services and she made me leave with her and go to Health Services! I sat there for another hour crying and all I kept saying to the nurse was "I want my stuff back! all of it!". I don't know what I was doing. I barely remember driving home.

And my boss is not even here next week. He is traveling and not back until Thursday? Does that even matter if he is there at this point since it is now an HR matter? Did he not want to be there when they fired me? But why could he just not be there Friday if they made me come up Friday late to fire me? I don't understand why they did not call me!

Do you really think I am going to get fired?

BaileyCatts
05-16-2010, 08:45 AM
Can can you file for Unemployment if you get fired for cause? Because this would be violating policy, wouldn't it? Can you file for unemployment in the USA if you get fired that way?

Aussie Willy
05-16-2010, 09:01 AM
Sounds like they are checking out the security situation. This is a big issue for companies. We recently lost access to our personal email accounts like hotmail because someone used it for sending out company documents. So everyone got punished. However we still have access to internet. So maybe there have been problems and you are now being punished for what others have done.

I agree with BigB08822. I wouldn't go in on Monday but ring and ask what is going on. Still I would be documenting everything and maybe give that to them. From what you have described, you have probably given them many reasons for them to think that you are guilty of something (because of your body language and the way you responded when your boss caught you out initially), regardless of whether you actually are.

Still 22 years in a workplace is an very long time. If attitude is a problem (which you have made comment on), that may not be in your favour. The other thing to consider though, is that if it works out that you may get fired, look on it as an opportunity for something else. The fact that they have taken this so seriously regardless of your length of service may indicate other issues. So even with this, I would probably start thinking about moving on from this workplace. Because you are probably never going to feel comfortable working there again.

BaileyCatts
05-16-2010, 09:08 AM
I am so sorry all of this happened, it sounds like a lot of things happened in just the right way for this to all go wrong.

It did!! It all happened in a matter of 15 seconds!!!! My boss sent the chart, he got up and walked to person's desk, I clicked it open, he walked back and saw it on my screen as I quickly clicked it off .... it all happened that fast!! I don't click that box at the exact second in time that I did, this never ever happens! That is how fast it happened! The worst part was that I lied! Of course he knows what he saw on my screen! I don't know why I lied about it, and again, and again when he kept asking me until I spit out some lame fake apology!! I don't know why I didn't just tell the truth that it was just a mistake!!! Why did I do that?????

Norlite
05-16-2010, 12:51 PM
After 22 years, could they be looking for a reason, especially if you don't get along with your coworkers?


This may very well be true. I've seen it happen over and over again with the one in any job who is considered, uhm, "the bitch" as you put it yourself. One slip up is what they wait for.

At any rate, I would go to work on Monday. The suspension was for two days, the two days are over, phone call or not. Go to work on Monday and face whatever is going to happen.


I hope it all works out for you BaileyCatts, whichever way it turns out.

Stormy
05-16-2010, 02:53 PM
But here's what I don't get, if you were in your bosses e-mail, didn't you say there were two folders, one for yours and one for his? He must have known you had access to it, right? I know you were blindsided by this when you came back, but I wouldn't have left without making sure they knew your side of the story. Even if you try to do that when you go back on Monday, it might be a little too late since you already had two other opportunities to rectify the situation and you didn't. I mean, if they said your getting fired is a strong possibility, they were probably telling the truth. But I agree with those that have said if you've been there that long and the situation is being handled like this, then something else is probably going on. It does not sound like the ideal environment for you anyways, since you even said you don't get along with others there. There's probably better workplace environments for you, so even if you are let go, finding a new opportunity could be a good thing in the long run.

iloveemoticons
05-16-2010, 03:53 PM
(((BaileyCatts))) I hope things work out. As overedge pointed out, if they have email logging on a central server , hopefully the investigation will show that it was a simple mistake and that you weren't deliberately compromising security.

And I agree with everyone that you really need to be firm about what happened and explain your side of the story clearly. No matter what happens, your boss and HR need to know the truth of what happened, that you made a mistake. Document any evidence you can to support your story, and be very careful about what you are asked to sign (for ex don't sign an admission that you did something wrong or an agreement to resign). All of that will factor into whether you are able to get unemployment.

Cupid
05-16-2010, 03:57 PM
Can can you file for Unemployment if you get fired for cause? Because this would be violating policy, wouldn't it? Can you file for unemployment in the USA if you get fired that way?


Aren't most people fired for just cause? Also, I always that most states are at-will states, which means they can fire you for any reason at all.

I always thought you could file unemployment only if you are let go/fired, but not if you quit. Maybe they are hoping that you quit. DO NOT.

Also, if he knew you had access to his email, what's the big deal? He must have some shit on their that he wondered if you saw. You should say nobody ever told you that you could not have personal access to his emails, that you dont have time to read themand clicked on it by accident. Stick to whatever story you had, and don't waiver.

Show up Monday with your head held high.

Cupid
05-16-2010, 04:05 PM
. . . I have worked there for 22 years!!!! Yes, I admit to having an attitude problem and I don't get along with the other girls, and people think I am 'unapproachable' when I am not. I am just very very introverted so people think I'm a bytch. Frankly I don't talk to people unless they talk to me. Yes, I have a sucky personality, I admit it. But I am a good, hard worker, I show up on time for work every day (unlike the other girls who seem to get away with showing up whenever they want), I do my job, I do it well, I get good performance reviews, I was even rated a 1 (the best) in 2008! Am I really going to get fired over this??????


Companies have their "favorites" I'm finding out. People who can get away with all sorts of behavior like showing up late, cutting out early, because they have a likeable "personality" or whatever. You're not at work to make friends, but to do a job and sounds like you do it well.

I think they're sitting tight on this because they are checking with Legal. I think they are hoping you'd be so uncomfortable that you will quit. Which would be the easiest avenue for them. Don't quit!

pilgrimsoul
05-16-2010, 04:57 PM
I'm not a lawyer, but I work closely with them. Whatever you do, DO NOT just call in tomorrow to see if they want you to come in. SHOW UP on time. If they're going to fire you, then just steel yourself and accept it. I know it will be horrible, but it will serve your best interests in the long run to face this head on.

If you don't show up Monday morning, they can claim that you quit and then they're off the hook in terms of firing you (even if you call). This would be very bad for you because your employer could cite it as grounds for opposing your unemployment claim. You can't take the chance of just calling in because you'll probably get voice mail or no answer. This is an old trick - don't fall for it.

If they're determined to fire you, make sure they do it by the book. I know it will be painful for you, but there's more at stake than just losing your job now - you need to ensure that you will receive funds to cover your living expenses until you find another job.

Another thing they might do is instead of firing you is to offer you a couple of months severance pay in exchange for signing a separation agreement. This option, IMHO, is the best possible outcome for you (other than keeping your job) because executing a separation agreement isn't technically a "firing" - this distinction would make it easier for you to explain to prospective employers why you left your current job. You could just say, "After 22 years with the same company, I decided it was time for a new challenge and felt it was time to move on."

If you go this route, make sure the separation agreement contains a clause prohibiting them from disclosing the circumstances surrounding your departure with anyone, or from giving you a negative employment reference.

As I stated before, I'm not an attorney - so if you have the means to do so, you should consult one instead of relying on my advice. It is money well spent.

I'm sorry this has happened to you and wish you well as you face whatever comes tomorrow.

skatesindreams
05-16-2010, 05:08 PM
I'm sorry that you are going through this.
Indeed, keep your head high.
As best you can, determine your options.

It does sound as though they are trying to find a reason to let you go.
If it wasn't done immediately, things aren't "cut and dried"; so, hang in there.

Keep us updated, We care.

Edited to add: I believe that pilgrimsoul offered some very good suggestions.

Jayar
05-16-2010, 07:43 PM
Something is fishy here...

1. Why did boss not know that you have access to his email?
2. Why did you feel so guilty to lie about how you opened the file?
3. Why, after 22 years of working there do they feel the need to treat you so harshly?

I am *not* siding with them, BC, but these are questions that I would ask myself. I think that you said that this was a reorg chart. Has there been gossip about the reorg? Maybe they think that the gossip is coming from you.

Whatever the situation, show up to work tomorrow on time, and be prepared to be fired.