Looking for another job elsewhere
by Just Wants Out!
I work in a very toxic environment. There is constant gossip, bickering, and finger-pointing. To make matters worse, we are hurting in other ways as well - within the past 6 months we fired our receptionist for doing work for a competitor, had one of our key people out on maternity leave, and had our financial manager working from home to avoid the onslaught of calls from vendor's looking for payment on past due accounts. As a result of this, no one really knows what they're expected to do, because they're filling the holes of all these missing employees (which we never have had job descriptions to begin with).
Company morale has taken a massive downfall - customer's are upset with product quality because our employees are being pushed to fill orders faster so we can make more money, salaried employees are angry with workload expectations and are expected to be accessible at all hours of the night.
As a result of the poor morale, the office manager has had one-on-one meetings with each of us to figure out what's going on. During our meeting, I confronted her with many issues I am unhappy with - the toxic company culture, the lack of job descriptions, the constant addition of "little jobs" handed to me by other employees who can't handle their workload or who aren't in the office, and false promises from my boss - who promised an incentive bonus program that I still have not seen. My manager tells me that I am to blame - that I'm my own worst enemy because I am a "bleeding heart" and will help out where I'm needed. She feels I've taken on too many things. I told her that I'm unhappy with what I'm currently doing here, and that I'm confused as to what my next step should be. She offered me the possibility of a new position that would be opening up soon, with
the same pay and benefits, however within the week, they hired someone else internally to do it.
I have been looking for a new job for the past year -- however we are currently the second rated county in unemployment in Ohio and the job market is fierce. I have been on various interviews after work hours, but nothing has panned out. This week I got a call-back to interview during work hours. It's an opportunity I can't turn down! I hate lying to my employer and I am curious what I should tell them.
If I tell them that I have an interview elsewhere, can they fire me on those grounds? If they do fire me for looking for work elsewhere, would I still be able to collect unemployment? All-in-All I have been an excellent employee, doing anything they've asked of me and bending over backwards to fill these empty holes.
Please advise. As an at-will employee, am I allowed to openly interview elsewhere or will this result in a justifiable firing by my employer which will deny me my right to unemployment?
Hi Just Wants Out,
I've got to ask you something. Do you not have PTO accrued? Is there some kind of company rule that forbids taking time off for personal reasons without revealing the details? Why do you feel compelled to reveal to your employer the specific nature of what you will be doing?
Here's my take on your situation. If you feel compelled to tell the employer "why" you need the time off and they fire you because of the reason .. it will be found to be lacking the element of misconduct .. plain and simple.
But let me suggest another possible scenario .. you tell the employer why you need the time off and they say "No, you cannot have the time off" .. What do you do? Quit? or try to rearrange the time of your interview?