10 First Days That Were The Absolute Worst

February 6, 2018


Work Safety


Pauline Morrissey

Your first day at a new job is always a stressful experience. You have to put your best foot forward, make a good first impression, learn everyone’s names, and actually do whatever you're being paid to do. It’s no wonder it doesn't always go down so smoothly. If you have a horror first day story that you’d rather forget, fear not, here are some real stories we found on the internet that’ll make you feel not so alone.

1. Can you feel the heat?

Source: Reddit

First day on a construction site. It was 110 degrees. There was no shade, and we were working on site lights for a parking lot, so the sun was also reflecting off the asphalt and making it hotter. Incredibly dusty and humid. We were digging trenches to look for missing pipe. Other guy who started the same day as me fainted around lunchtime and was sent home after he was steady and he said he didn't want to go to a doctor. I got sent home around 1 o'clock because when someone asked how I was doing, I mentioned feeling like I was going to throw up. The whole first week was terrible though. The guy who started with me quit after the second day and I went home early everyday because I kept getting dizzy/and or nauseous. But they did say that they were impressed that I kept coming back everyday and at the end of the week I got moved inside. 

2. Those are some cheesed off customers

Source: Storify

I tripped and spilled a big bucket of melted cheese on the floor of the hamburger joint. When my manager asked me to mop it up, put it back in the bucket, and place it back on the salad/baked potato bar, I quit. Shortest first day ever!

3. Just scraped through the first day

Source: Giphy

I've been working a service valet at a Ford dealership for nearly a year now. But on my first day, about 3 hours in, I need to take a brand new $60,000 F-150 through our car wash. However I'd never driven anything larger than a mid-size sedan prior to this. I turn the truck up to the door for the car wash and the drive into the wash. What I failed to realise was how angled the bed was behind me from such a sharp turn; and i put about a foot long scrape in the side of the truck from the post. I then panic and reverse out of the carwash, and back straight into a brand new Explorer. At this point, I thought I was absolutely boned. I ended up costing the dealership about $3000 in damages. Luckily for me my dealership has a forgiveness period and my boss still jokes with me about my first day.

4. Fish out of water

Source: Giphy

Almost blew up the warehouse because I didn't tighten a hose properly in the electrical room while detailing one of the trucks. The whole room had like 1 foot of water built up in it. Holy shit, my boss was pissed, but he laughed his ass of watching me clean it up. He was fine with it afterwards since nothing serious happened.

Source: Reddit

5. Up in smoke

Source: Storify

On the first day of my first job, as a copy editor for a daily newspaper, I decided to pop some popcorn for a snack. Well, no one told me the microwave ran a "little higher" than normal microwaves so I set the popcorn for 3:30 mins. 1:30 mins later, smoke is billowing out of the microwave setting off the fire alarm and causing an evacuation of the entire building. Needless to say, I this incident stuck with me throughout my time there.

6. Quite the entrance

Source: The Guardian

Once (I’ve got loads of these) I got sent to a client’s office in a featureless block in Wembley. Somehow, I managed to get the directions up to the client’s reception horribly wrong. Before I’d realised it, I’d opened a fire door out onto the roof. It shut behind me with a resolute thunk, leaving me no option but to walk around the roof trying to find another way in. Turning a corner, I spotted my work colleagues and the client all looking at me in bewilderment through the windows of their meeting room. They had to open a window for me to climb in, in front of everyone. 

7. Too fast, too furious

Source: Reddit

I worked as a proofreader for a printing firm that made pay-per-view TV guides. When we were given a file, we scanned it with a wand thingy so that the system would assign it to our employee number with a timestamp. I was called into the manager's office at the end of my first day and let go. I asked if my work was poor and she said, "no, there were no errors." The reason I was being fired is that I was finishing the files too quickly. "We can't bill the client if you finish the file in less than an hour." No one ever told me that we had a (soft) minimum work time. Basically, I was fired for being too efficient. 

8. It all came undone

Source: Reddit

Got a nice big office and I was fixing some cables under the desk, unfortunately the seam on my pants split from the bottom of my zipper almost to the top of the back of my belt. Locked the door, had no needle and thread so I McGyvered it, yep staples! I figured I'd cover it with scotch tape and it worked, for the first hour, then the tape came off and I wound up snagging my testicles on the staples. I stayed at my desk for the rest of the day, tried not to move and left at 5:00, walking home was the worst. By the time I walked the 3 blocks I was bleeding. It was not a good day.

9. Don’t trust the middle man

Source: The Penny Hoarder

I got hired through a temp service to work at the local phone company...no problem, as I had done tons of telemarketing before and figured it would be working on the billing/customer service end. Nope...first day, they had me on the phone with linemen who were up a telephone pole somewhere halfway across the country asking me which wire to cut… I had NO clue what I was doing,and had a mini-meltdown talking to my supervisor. She asked me how I could possibly not know what I was doing when I had clearly passed the test to get the job. My response was "Test???? WHAT TEST????". Turns out the temp agency was supposed to give any and all applicants a test to see if they had the experience necessary to do the job… I had a call from the temp agency telling me I was fired before I got home that day.

10. Over before it began

Source: Giphy

They called me and told me I was let go for not showing up on my first day. Which was a surprise for me since at no point after the interview had I been told that I’d been hired.

Pauline Morrissey

Freelance writer based in Sydney and contributor to the Smith's Lawyers blog


We’re ready to help you