20 Stories From A Viral Thread On What Made Someone Quit On Their Very First Day At Work

Published 1 year ago

When you land a new job, it’s a hopeful, somewhat scary experience because you never know what to expect. If you’ve left behind a job  for this venture particularly, it can be downright nerve-wracking. However, for the most part you expect your first day at least to go well and you expect to discover all the skeletons in the closet of your new workplace within the first 3 to 6 months normally.

Sometimes though the situation can reveal itself much faster if you’re paying attention to the signs. Read on to discover the juiciest tales picked form this now viral thread on reddit, when a bizarre or infuriating event led to someone leaving a job almost instantaneously and possibly saving themselves a lot of trouble in the long run. These people had such a bad experience on the first day itself, it led to them quitting and never looking back.

More info: Reddit

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Image source: Graehaus, DC_Studio

I had a telemarketing job where I had to pay 75$ up front, and forgo commission for the first month. I said “F**k this s**t”, gave them all the finger as I walked out. A friend left 30 minutes later. It was some illegal call center in an apartment. The building still pisses me off walking by it.


Image source: Mxysptlik, GeorgeRudy

They wanted us to make our first sales to friends and family members.

F**k that. If your first option is for me to make money off the people I care about most, there’s really nowhere to go but down (morally).


Image source: pjlo1234, ijeab

They forced us to pray together every morning and recite the pledge of allegiance. The only thing I have allegiance to is my 14 year old arthritic dog Bisco. Haha let me know if you guys want to see photos.


Image source: EvilBosch, Rawpixel

I didn’t even last a full shift.

It was Pizza delivery. It was the early 90s; I was 20M. My first shift was in torrential rain, driving a 1967 VW Beetle (with a flat windscreen). Two orders required me to go back because the pizzas weren’t the ones ordered.

Then I arrived back to see that one of the other drivers had been shot in the leg with an air-rifle by Ricky the Shift-Manager.

I started at noon. Quit at 8.30pm. Can’t remember if I was ever paid; didn’t care.


Image source: adura_grounded, lenade

I’m a fish hobbyist and I got a job in the fish department at PetCo. On my first day they wanted me to take out all the rocks (substrate) from each tank, scrub them and put them back in the tanks, one tank at a time. Moving substrate releases bad bacteria and can get the fish sick or [take them out]. I explained this to them and said that it was best to just do a water change for 20% of each tank. They said, basically, sorry this is what corporate says and you have to do it. I was like, “Okay, I’ll do it after lunch.” I never came back from lunch.


When I was 17 or 18 I started a new job at a popular pet groomer in the area. The girl training me hit a dog twice because she was very roughly brushing him and he was just trying to move away from her. He was tied to the table, so all he could do was try to rotate himself. I said something to her and she said that it was his fault, he wasn’t behaving. When I left, I called the owner and explained what I saw because I was horrified. His response was “Well, if the dog needed to be corrected, then it needed to be corrected”. I thought he must not have understood what I meant and explained again that the dog didn’t become aggressive in any way, he just moved away from the brush. He told me he understood me the first time and meant what he said. I never showed up for my second day. I wish I’d known who the dog belonged to. That would’ve been my next call. This was almost 20 years ago and I’ll never forget it.

Image source: Randon0115


Image source: yParticle, korneevamaha

They hired me for the wrong position, one which I was woefully unqualified for and not interested in faking it. The first day the “grunts” were training the “expert” on the most basic stuff and it became clear to everyone I had no business being there. After the shift I handed in my hard hat and told management to do their homework next time.


Image source: JeffreyGlen, Pressmaster

I was hired to do Human Resources, I got there and orientation was basically them telling the new hires three straight hours of what they are going to do to make sure they get fired. I went to the plant manager at lunch and told them they needed to put together a better orientation, and asked how soon I could get to work on fixing their discipline program so the factory wasn’t a literal meat grinder. He said, “discipline is the one area you can’t touch.”

M**o I’m HR – discipline is the one area I should own entirely. I typed up a letter with an outline of a plan to improve employee relations, reduce turnover and make the place somewhere people actually want to work instead of being somewhere they have to work because there wasn’t anything else… I also threw up some NLRB contacts and laws and pinned it to the bulletin board in the office along with my resignation letter and left mid afternoon.

Shortly thereafter they went out of business because their turnover and hiring policy had reached the literal limit of people willing and able to get on there so they started going through the people who had been canned previously and some came back but it was the ones you wouldn’t want to come back which then made anyone who actually do their job leave and so it became basically the laughing stock of the area. Good riddance.


Image source: SufficentSherbert, AnnaStills

They didn’t pay some of the workers their salary because of mismanagement (legit boss f****d up and decided that *he* wasn’t gonna have his 6 figure salary deducted) and tried to make me sign a contract where my salary is less than what was agreed upon. BONUS: they also added two extra jobs in my position that I had to do and apparently I am to be on-call at all times.

I was desperate but I wasn’t stupid.

You know it’s bad when even before I could unpack at my new desk three co-workers came up and warned me to read my contract carefully AND told me it sucked to work here.

I wasn’t even there for 30 minutes.


Image source: AmeliaWalker18, NomadSoul1

I was specifically told to park in a certain lot to pick up my parking sticker on the first day. My *almost* manager met me at the front of the building to walk me to security and get my sticker and show me around, but was a complete a*****e for about 3 hours. I was asking questions about what’s expected/priority (you know, the usual first day stuff) and he just shot down every question so condescendingly. Lunch time comes around, so I walk out to vape real quick / put the f*****g sticker on and guess what? My goddamn car is GONE. Why? They towed my car because I didn’t have a sticker yet. I called my sister to pick me up, never went back to that place. $250 to get my f*****g car and a waste of a day.


Image source: happyapy, TrendsetterImages

It wasn’t quite the first day. During the interview I informed them that I would not work on Sunday. The interviewer told me that would be acceptable. During my two week training, I did not have to work on Sundays. My first week after the training, I was scheduled to work that Sunday. I protested and reminded my manager about the agreement during the interview. He informed me that they couldn’t always honor it and that I would sometimes be expected to work my fair share of Sundays. I quit on the spot and walked out.


This was in the 80s and I was on my first day working at this mall food court place called Au Bon Pain. As soon as I walked in, like an hour before opening, the manager handed me a cardboard box of sliced deli meats and told me to run tap water over all of them until they didn’t feel sticky, rebag them, and put a new expiration sticker on them for another 3 days. Then he pointed at like 4 crates of basically rotten oranges, some had a greenish/blue coat of mold on them, and he told me to use them to make the orange juice. I said ok and I was going to go grab some gloves from the stock room and just walked out the back delivery door and never returned.

Image source: gamrgrl


Image source: anon, AnnaStills

Amazon fulfillment center. Had us lined up outside the building. There was a guy in line that was already losing his s**t because he had been scheduled two hours earlier but they wouldn’t let him inside. Lined up like cattle. Then we go in and its the most impersonal experience of my life. Literally felt like cattle being ushered from one stop to the next. Then we went to see out work stations as “stowers” and it was the worst job Ive ever had. Repetitive and frustrating. Then we went to lunch and it was so goddamned bleak. This was peak Covid so the lunch tables were just single desks, six feet apart all facing forward. A few vending machines and thats it. My car was parked too far away to even go out and chill for a bit. Then back to work. Its all AI assisted so it is so f*****g frustrating. I go to the bathroom and hang out for a bit. Go back to my station and check out how my other newbie stowers are doing. Everyone looks pissed and miserable. I give a solidarity nod to the guy next me and then just walk out of the building never to be seen again.


Image source: mejok, Wavebreakmedia

I actually did this twice.

The first time was because I was a college student and needed a job to pay rent. Got a job working in a new call center that had opened up in my home town. It was awful. The atmosphere was toxic, the boss was a horrific a*****e, and there were all sorts of s****y “metrics” and goals, etc. you had to reach. I just never went back after the first day. Called them the next morning and told them it wasn’t for me.

The second time was a deal where I interviewed for a job that I was pretty excited about where I was going to be leading a team dealing with advocating for some issues in international politics. I was super excited. The interviews I had were done in a cafe…they sent me the address of the office and I arrived for my first day and it was some decrepit, barely standing office with the most outdated computers and office equipment. The “team” I was going to be leading had been referred to as “a small team” in the job interviews. In reality it was one lady who didn’t speak either of the languages I speak.


Image source: Zer0Summoner, halfpoint

Was supposed to be an office job, straight salary. Got there the first day and it turned out to be door to door sales, commission only. Not even people who had expressed interest; just literally cold calling but in person at their door instead of on the phone. Didn’t even stay to hear the end of their explanation of how really if you think about it this *is* the job they advertised and interviewed me for, just *better* because (I don’t know, some b******t, as I said, I had left by then).


I started working in a retail shop and hadn’t been trained on anything such as tills etc. The only thing I had been told is to great every customer that entered the store within 10 seconds of them entering and ask if they needed any help.

A customer came to me, asked for help and wanted to pay for the item I helped with. As I hadn’t been shown how to use the tills yet, I asked the store manager to show me what to do. The manager, in front of said customer, started calling me out for not “knowing how to do my job”. It was my first day, I had been there 1.5 hours and hadn’t been shown how to do anything in the store.

I met my dad at my lunch, burst into tears and asked him to go to the store and quit for me. I was young, I’d never worked in retail before and I absolutely hated how that manager made me feel.

I started with 4 people on the same day. We had kept in touch and every single one of them left within a couple of weeks of starting. If there’s a toxic environment, a bad manager (which can often take longer to figure out) or your gut is screaming at you to leave, do. Don’t waste your time being miserable.

Image source: sunmoonstars89


Image source: SlothOfDoom, Anna_Om

They sent me to a room to do a bunch of on-boarding paperwork and those incredibly dull orientation videos companies love so much. Less than 10 minutes into it the manager comes in and tells me they need to cover the sales floor immediately because I was the only person for the department that day.

No training, no computer logins, no idea where anything in the building was or who any of the dozens of other people wandering around were or even what was really expected of me. Just go and solo a department that usually had between five and eight staff at any time.

I gave it a shot for like 45 minutes, and realized the whole place was staffed by miserable entitled f***s who went out of their way to avoid work. I just walked out without saying anything.


Image source: schroedingersnewcat, thananit_s

I had been at a job for more than 4 years, and was desperate to get out. I was doing interviews multiple places, but the one I REALLY wanted hadn’t given me an offer. So I picked from the other 3 offers I had. Of course, on my first day, I got the offer from the company I wanted, and it was 25k more than the job I had started that day.

I sat down with my manager and let her know. She was shocked at first, but understood. There were no hard feelings, and she said that if it didn’t work out, she would love to have me back. I actually gave her a name of someone to replace me, and that person was hired and is being groomed to be her successor when she retires.

I took the job at the company I wanted, and not 2 hours after signing the offer letter, got a 5th offer offering even more money. Had an Internal crisis, and stayed with the one that I had initially wanted. 17 months later I just got promoted, and I am wildly happy about it.


Image source: thedude386, AZ-BLT

When I was in high school I got a job at an oil change place. I took the drug test and passed and got my start date. As I was getting ready to leave my house for my first day of work, I got a call from the local park maintenance director asking if I would be interested in joining their maintenance team for the summer. I already had a friend who worked there and already knew the maintenance director since she had helped me do my Eagle Scout project. I accepted that position and called up the oil change place and quit. The park job was guaranteed to be 40 hours a week during the summer and I worked there for 4 summers, making enough to sustain myself during the school year without a job. The work wasn’t bad either, clearing trails, mowing, spreading mulch, picking up trash. The oil change place was not happy but ended up hiring a friend of mine who eventually got into hard drugs after trying them with people who work there. I think I made the right choice.


Image source: Snarleey

Cost of parking was more than the wage. They told me to move my car from the back of the store to an expensive parking deck. I drove home.

Shanilou Perera

Shanilou has always loved reading and learning about the world we live in. While she enjoys fictional books and stories just as much, since childhood she was especially fascinated by encyclopaedias and strangely enough, self-help books. As a kid, she spent most of her time consuming as much knowledge as she could get her hands on and could always be found at the library. Now, she still enjoys finding out about all the amazing things that surround us in our day-to-day lives and is blessed to be able to write about them to share with the whole world as a profession.

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first day at work, immediately resigned, quit job, quit job on the first day, workplace
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