Will these HR horror stories give you a fright?

Wednesday October 26, 2022

Halloween is but a few days away. Pumpkins have been picked, ghosts and ghouls have gathered, and spooky stories are being shared.

It may be the scariest time of year, but it takes a lot to scare those who are brave enough to work in HR.

Settle down and see if these HR horror stories give you a fright!


A video emerged of an employee at a hospital café allegedly washing their dirty shoes in the sink next to the desserts. Apparently, the sponge used was put back in the same container as the clean utensils. After the video went viral the worker was fired, but a PR and HR nightmare followed with people commenting and questioning the café’s hygiene practices on social media!

Trick or treat?

Tech companies can be known for their laid back and modern environments. One company gave their employees the standard perks like drinks and snacks, but also had a pool table in the kitchen. The CEO installed a hidden camera to monitor usage as they believed employees were wasting time enjoying these benefits. They began sending out emails to the whole company and named individuals for “consuming more than their fair share” of snacks and drinks, or for spending too much time at the pool table.

A villainous reference

An aeroplane pilot was fired from his job when it was discovered that his references weren’t exactly legitimate. The pilot had listed Star Wars villain, Jabba the Hutt, as a referee. When the airline who had employed him had discovered this, they offered the pilot the chance to resign and claimed back his training costs. The pilot took the airline to tribunal to try and claim notice-period pay, but the judge concluded that it was a serious matter which could have had catastrophic consequences, so summary dismissal was appropriate.

Smashing pumpkins piñatas

There are certain ways to go about letting your manager know if you’re unhappy and some are better than others. A group of employees decided to protest against their company’s wage and benefits cuts, unpaid bonuses and use of sweatshops. They decided to take their frustrations out by smashing up a piñata that was designed to look like their CEO. Their boss responded by telling them “You always have the right to find a job where you will be happier”.

Don’t let nightmares become reality

People problems can cause nightmares for SMEs, especially if you’re unsure how to handle them. For help and guidance, get in touch with your local HR Dept.

Preventing People Problems

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