Fun fact: I once quit a job only three weeks after being hired. Admittedly, my reasoning for making such a swift departure was simply that another (better) opportunity popped up—a pretty dull tale, compared to what follows.
So what exactly follows?
Some of the most compelling stories from the recent “What’s the fastest you’ve quit a job? What was the reason?” Reddit thread (sic, obviously, throughout):
Commenter Toastwaver recounts their one-day stretch at a job that turned out to be much more difficult than expected:
“In high school, my buddy and I decided that we would spend the summer working as laborers on a farm. We showed up at a small local farm (central MA) and applied with the owner. The job involved planting seeds, or saplings, every three feet or so and moving along the row on my hands and knees, and basically crawling and planting little saplings all day.
“He said, ‘Yeah, I mean, I’ll hire you two, but I don’t really need you and I don’t know why you would want to do this. See those Vietnamese women out there? They will work circles around you and they don’t take breaks. It pays $6 an hour. Good luck.’
“My buddy lasted all Summer. I lasted one day. Then, I think I got a job at a frozen yogurt place with air conditioning.
“Those 65-year-old ladies were machines.”
Commenter mcsevigny explains how they quit only eight hours after coming in for their first day, since the office (and the boss) were much more disheveled (and straight-up mean) than they had expected:
“Eight hours. I was hired as a project leader. As my boss was introducing me to the staff, nobody knew I had been hired. First red flag. Everyone looked miserable. Second red flag. The office I was given hadn’t been sorted and cleaned (there were tampons and pads in the drawers) and had no windows and was the size of a closet. Third red flag. My boss told me before leaving that they have decided to not raise my salary after all. I wouldn’t be making more than my previous job. Fourth red flag.
“I spent the lunch break crying, and when I left at 5 p.m., I said to my boss I wouldn’t be back tomorrow. After I explained why, he said he would ‘ruin my reputation and my name.’ Fifth red flag.
“Good riddance. His threats didn't have any impacts.”
Commenter ZizzerZazzer chronicles how they quit a job (and made their sister quit the same job) after only one week, because their boss was being a total creep:
“I quit a job after about a week and made my sister quit too. I was 16 and she must have been 14. We were paid under the table for helping a guy who ran carnival games and bounce houses, etc. We got our first envelope of cash and were paid better than we expected, but he also invited most of the girls and none of the boys via an invitation to a ‘good worker’ party at his house.
“I quit, said my sister was quitting too, and I let her help and take on some of the babysitting jobs I had the summer.”
Commenter ChocolateSnowflake writes about how they quit a job after two months, since they were expected to do ALL THE WORK without any help:
“Two months. I got handed over long-running projects that had been left in a total state by the outgoing person. I was working my butt off trying to get things in order, doing tasks that should have been done 3 years ago (!!!) and kept requesting additional support to help me, and got dismissed or told someone else would be assigned soon.
“So I was luckily enough to quickly find another job, and I called up my manager and quit. She somehow had the cheek to act surprised when I said the lack of support I had received was unacceptable.”
Commenter pashminamina describes how they quit a job after three months, when a customer threatened to kill them:
“Three months. I worked in a call center, making survey calls to the U.S. I was 18 and very, very sheltered. Had to make a call to residents of Las Vegas about their opinion on road reparations. I get this guy on the phone and start my spiel: ‘Hi my name is Alice Vega (fake name) from X Surveys. I was wondering if you could give me your opinion…’ and suddenly the guy explodes with expletives and threats of sexual violence.
“Now, in this job we couldn’t ever hang up, nor stop trying to get the other person to answer the survey so the call was something like ‘Please sir, your local government needs your opinions…’ ‘WELL I NEED YOU TO CHOKE ON MY DICK, I’M GONNA FIND YOU AND SLIT YOUR THROAT AND FUCK THE HOLE.’ ‘Sir, we just need to know if the work on repairing X street… ’ ‘AND I NEED TO KNOW WHERE YOU ARE SO I CAN KILL YOU,’ etc.
“In the end, I hung up and ran to the bathroom to cry. At the time, I had never heard anybody say anything even close to that and I was pretty shook. A couple of minutes later, I hear a knock on the door. It’s my supervisor. He wanted to let me know that he was listening to the call… and told me off for hanging up. Also my ‘bathroom minutes’ were up for the day, so get back to my chair.
“And so, that day I quit.”
Commenter petitblaireau reveals how they quit after a single day, because they were given zero training (and more importantly, because a coworker shoved them):
“First day at Tim Hortons. It was alongside a main highway, going from the small towns to a state capital. They started me off during the morning rush, no training. Just gave me a headset and put me in front of the drive-thru register. I was doing all right until someone ordered something new, and I couldn’t find it on the register. Another girl shoved me out of the way, because I was taking too long, and I fell right on my ass. Finished the shift, got two free donuts, and never went back.”
Commenter pgyn8965 recounts the time they quit a job after one week, since their manager was the biggest micromanager ever:
“A week at Burger King. I got a power-trip manager who decided that I wasn’t sweeping the floor the right way and that I had to stay behind to do it over (the floor was clean, he just didn’t like the way I held the brush). My last bus was due, and there was no way, as an 18-year-old girl, I was walking home alone down a dark highway, so I quit on the spot.”
Amazingly-named commenter VaginaGoblin writes about how they quit a job after one day, because the money simply wasn’t worth their time:
“I was hired at California Tortilla for a minimum wage job back in 2000. Their policy for making burritos was that they wanted everyone to be able to memorize the menu and be able to make each burrito from memory, without looking at a list of directions. They told me not to come back until I had the menu memorized, and I just never went back, because memorizing a menu by heart for minimum wage wasn’t worth the effort to me.”
Commenter LookAcrossTheWater describes how they quit a job after two days, because the job ended up being anything but what they were told it would be:
“Two days in. They suddenly told me they didn’t have full-time hours to offer me like they promised. I also wouldn’t be eligible for benefits anymore, and the schedule they promised me went out the window. I would now only be working Monday evenings and Saturdays. I had quit a full time job I had worked at for 12 years to take this position, because it was closer to my new home. I freaked out, because I was paying a mortgage for the first time, and suddenly, I didn’t have a full-time job anymore. After my second day, I called my old boss, and she was happy to take me back. Sent an email to my new job telling them I quit and calling them out on their bullshit, then sent an email to their corporate head office with copies of the emails they had sent me where they offered me full-time hours and benefits with a great schedule.”
Well, that’s it—I quit.