Five of the brashest(1) Greg Smith, vice president, Goldman Sachs
Spending 12 years with a company shows loyalty and devotion – at least, that’s what you might think. However, Goldman Sachs vice president Greg Smith, who joined the bank as an intern from Stanford, was steadily bubbling with rage beneath the surface. The executive aired the firm’s dirty laundry by announcing his departure via The New York Times in March 2012, calling the employer, which was paying him a salary of around $500,000 a year, “toxic and destructive”. Essentially, Smith described Goldman Sachs as a money-hungry business with no interest in the needs of clients. It seemed as though Smith was trying to make a name for himself with the scathing claims, and released a book called Why I Left Goldman Sachs several months later. Of course, the company didn’t take the very public attack without fighting back and forensic experts were called in to investigate. Old emails and documents revealed that Smith was expecting a salary above $1 million, which one boss described as “off the charts unrealistic”. He was left red-faced after more digging showed his continued attempts at securing promotions and pay rises were denied, and is said to have found the appointment of a female FD a “difficult transition”. On the one-year anniversary of Smith’s departure, an unnamed source thought to be from Goldman Sachs, said: “Today, his [Smith’s] book is ranked No. 19,990 on Amazon, and he’s not even the first hit on Google when you type in his name, having been out-algorithmed by a Midwestern automotive equipment manufacturer…” ––––––––––––––––––––––––––––––––––––––––––––––––––––––––––––––––––––––––––––––– (2) Steven Slater, flight attendant, Jet Blue
We all witnessed the nut rage scandal during which Korean Air heiress Cho Hyun-ah lost her temper and went, well, nuts after a member of staff had the audacity to serve her macadamia nuts in a bag rather than on a plate. The cheek! Apparently working on an aircraft can do weird things to people, however, for Hyun-ah isn’t the only person to suffer from a plane paddy. In 2010, JetBlue flight attendant Steven Slater had seemingly endured his fill of a shift when landing in New York from Pittsburgh, and an altercation with a passenger tipped him over the edge. According to Slater, a woman stood up to remove her bag from the overhead baggage compartment before the plane had come to a complete stop, thus he went to ask her to sit down, but in doing so ended up being struck by the customer’s luggage. He claimed that, upon asking for an apology, he was met with a torrent of abuse. Rather than report the passenger though, Slater decided to go out in a burst of glory and described the fracas over the PA system and announced “I’m done!” before grabbing two beers and jumping down the emergency slide to make his escape. It all sounds pretty cool, right? The stuff you dream of doing to ditch a job you hate? Slater was arrested and charged with with criminal mischief, reckless endangerment, and criminal trespass.
–––––––––––––––––––––––––––––––––––––––––––––––––––––––––––––––––––––––––––––––(3) Unnamed, bulk food buyer, Whole Foods Market
You know it’s about to go down when a letter of notice starts with: “Dear Whole Foods Market, “My experience at Whole Foods was like an increasingly sped up fall down a really long hill. That got rockier with every metre. And eventually, just really spiky … With fire, acid and Nickleback music. I was hired about five or six years ago. I appreciated and respected what the company said it’s philosophies were at that time. The ‘core values’ essentially. However, it didn’t take long to realize what complete and utter bullshit they are.” Indeed, this particularly disgruntled employee, who continued to elaborate on how the core values are being broken, also revealed in the letter that he believes timekeeping isn’t important and, apparently, neither is a grocery store that’s really just a “faux hippy Wal-mart”. No stone was left unturned in the letter, calling out the business for wasting food and electricity, while individual colleagues were also butchered for various qualities, including “insane anger and passive aggressive behaviour” – pot and kettle? It’s safe to say, the unnamed ex-bulk buyer will have left without a reference or lifelong friends.
–––––––––––––––––––––––––––––––––––––––––––––––––––––––––––––––––––––––––––––––(4) Adam, shift manager, Taco Bell
You know what they say – if you can’t take the heat, get out of the kitchen.That was the case for Adam, a seemingly unappreciated shift manager at a Buffalo branch of Mexican fast food chain Taco Bell. Having been forbidden from having 4 July (Independence Day) off from work, despite having worked 22 days straight, Adam is thought to have seen a red more vivid than the fire hot sauce offered at the establishment. Deciding it was time to get out for pastures new, he made use of the billboard outside the restaurant with a not-so-fond farewell message to his employer.
–––––––––––––––––––––––––––––––––––––––––––––––––––––––––––––––––––––––––––––––(5) Jenny, personal assistant, unknown
In 2010, office worker Jenny snapped and decided to email her colleagues with a resignation that spanned 33 photos of her holding messages on a whiteboard. The no holds barred barrage revealed her boss Spencer to be a womaniser with bad breath who seemed to enjoy nothing more than a good game of Farmville during office hours. Spencer retaliated, however, mocking his former assistant in kind by highlighting her apparent lack of intelligence and class. He also called her out for breaking an employee agreement and threatened legal action. You might wonder why this particular form of quitting isn’t higher up, but it turns out it was a prank from the Chive. However, it means there’s an opportunity to make it a reality if you are thinking about leaving your post and fancy some internet fame, but just be ready for the consequences if your boss is anything like Spencer.
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