Signs 2-5

By Deb Perelman  |  Posted 2008-04-03 Print this article Print

2. Your Office is Now a Cube, Your Cube Has Been Moved to the Pantry

Does everyone else on your level have an office and you're still in a cube? When they reorganized, did you end up with the office or the cube next to the construction zone, or in the darkest corner of the building? Sure, you can pretend it's not personal, but it might be just the kind of thing that you'll understand clearly in hindsight.

"If you're moved out of your office into a cubicle or into the basement, it doesn't just send a message to you but to the people left in your organization that it is a place where people are treated that way on their way out," Jim Lanzalotto, vice president of strategy and marketing at Yoh Services, a provider of talent and outsourcing services based in Philadelphia, told eWEEK.

3. Suddenly, Everything Is in Writing

Human resources requires a long paper trail to ensure your boss did everything by the book before they fired you. Maybe you and your boss used to discuss things over the phone, or you'd chat in his or her office and suddenly, you are receiving only formal e-mails, sometimes just to review the conversation you two have had. You'd be correct to be nervous.

"If you talk to people who have gone through the process of getting fired, they will say that there was a lack of communication over time. But just because everything is in writing doesn't mean that this is what it is about. Companies do things like this all the time for different reasons, such as making interactions more formal. While it may be good to be a little paranoid, it doesn't always mean something bad," said Lanzalotto.

4. Your Team Is Having Meetings Without You

Get the nagging feeling you're out of the loop? Did one of your co-workers reference a meeting you missed "because you were out that day", except you haven't missed a day in months? This may not just be a sign you've fallen out of favor with the powers that be, but that your relationship with them has reached a point of no return.

"When it gets that bad, you've probably already reached the unsaveable zone. I don't think you're going to be able to salvage that relationship," Pappalardo said.

5. You're Being Set Up to Fail

If you're being given undesirable, under-supported projects that nobody could realistically succeed in, it might be time to update your resume. Blowing it on a big or visible project is one of the fastest ways to get fired, and one of the most hassle-free ways for a company to get you out the door.

"Putting you on a project that you're doomed to fail is fairly common; promoting you to a position that you're not likely to succeed in is another trick. It's a subtle way of saying 'move over,'" Pappalardo said.

Meanwhile, the great projects-those that you would easily excel in-are going to others.


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