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4 CEOs Share the Biggest Mistakes Employees Make that Could Get them Fired

In an age when social media highlights and amplifies on-the-job mistakes, you can’t be too careful in the office.
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Image Credit: Pexels / kinkate

Job security is pretty much nonexistent today.

In fact, research shows that employees in the private sector are three times more likely to be fired compared to employees working for the government.

In an age where people are getting fired for making seemingly innocent social media blunders, you can’t be too careful.

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According to four CEOs, being caught making the following mistakes will automatically get you axed from your job:

Displaying Lack of Loyalty to the Organization

Employee loyalty is fast declining, and research shows that less than half of employees are committed to their jobs – a particular study found that only 40 percent of millenials are “somewhat” committed to their jobs.

CEOs are increasingly becoming frustrated with this lack of loyalty, and some are dismissing employees as a result. In fact, for Simonetta Lein, CEO of the Simonetta Lein brand, Vice President of The Wishwall Foundation, and one of the top 100 fashion influencers in the world, lack of loyalty is the greatest mistake that would make her fire an employee. According to her, an employee has to go if he/she is “unloyal to her and her business.”

When asked how employee loyalty is determined, Lein says that while nobody is above mistake – and while mistakes “done with a good heart” can easily be tolerated and forgiven – “laziness and lack of communication” is a sign of employee disloyalty and will result in the guilty employee being axed.

Exhibiting Dishonesty and Insincerity

Research shows that a whopping 64 percent of small businesses have suffered from employee dishonesty. Even worse, research shows that employee dishonesty – such as corruption, billing fraud, and check tampering – is the biggest threat to the survival of a small business.

Little wonder employers see employee dishonesty as a big deal!

According to Alex Jasin, the founder and CEO of Metapress, while he is very careful when it comes to firing an employee, he wouldn’t hesitate if it involves lack of honesty:

“Firing an employee is always a last resort, but in my experience, it usually comes down to a lack of honesty. Honesty is the foundation of any transparent relationship, so if I can’t trust someone – employee or otherwise – I don’t do business with them. It’s taken me years of learning that lesson the hard way, but over time I’ve learned to trust my gut more and more.”

Jasin believes that there is no point working with an employee (or anybody for that matter) that you can’t trust.

Jasin’s sentiment was echoed by Ayodeji Onibalusi, CEO of Effective Inbound Marketing and a regular feature in top publications like Entrepreneur and Business Insider. Onibalusi says:

“Dishonesty is a big no-no for me. I believe employees can be and should be trained as perks of working with you alongside several other benefits. I see my employees as brothers and sisters, but to continue to function as a family, there must be sincerity and honesty.”

Refusal to Follow Orders and Rebelling Against Authority

Being a rebel seems to be celebrated in today’s culture – or perhaps in the media. Billionaire Elon Musk recently made news for encouraging employees to walk out of “boring” meetings – but who determines which meeting is boring?

According to John Stevens, the CEO of Hosting Facts, refusal to follow orders is the biggest mistake that will make him fire an employee: “When an employee refuses to follow orders and set down principles and constantly rebels against authority, the employee has to go. Order is essential to effective functioning of any organization.”

Stevens isn’t alone. In a recent article, he wrote about how an intern got fired for trying to rebel against the dress code of the company she was working for. After unsuccessfully trying to convince management to relax the dress code, this intern felt it was best to mobilize other workers to unite against the dress code. Not only was she fired, but everybody involved was fired alongside her.

Most employers encourage employees to make mistakes so as not to inhibit their creative ability – but some missteps are just unacceptable. continue to experiment on the job, but take note of the above “mistakes” that ended up with the employees who made them being axed.


Have you ever made a big mistake at work? What was the upshot? We want to hear from you! Leave a comment or join the discussion on Twitter.

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