While working on my novel, I was frequently called upon to offer advice to other writers. One of the topics I covered was the fine art of getting fired from a potential new employer. I thought I would share my methods for getting almost fired, as I believe they can help others in similar situations.

1. Research The Industry

You wouldn’t go on a blind date without doing your research first, would you? The same goes for finding the perfect job. Before you begin the application process, you should do your research into the company and find out as much as possible about their history, products, culture etc. There are plenty of online directories and blogs that can tell you a lot about a business. Additionally, the people you will be working with or for should be someone you can trust and feel comfortable talking to about any type of topic. Doing your research in advance will make it much easier to establish good communication and get the job done.

2. Have A Game Plan

Having a game plan is essential when dealing with any type of situation, but it is especially important when trying to avoid getting fired. When you have a plan, you are much less likely to make impulsive decisions that could potentially land you in trouble. For instance, if you are called into your boss’s office and told that your performance is unsatisfactory and that you are being terminated, how would you react? By having a plan and sticking to it, you can save yourself from being blindsided. When you are given the opportunity to ask questions about the position, be sure to ask about the company’s pay and benefits, as these are the most important aspects of any job.

3. Follow The Company’s Directions

Many times, we are put in situations that are not exactly what we signed up for. Sometimes we aren’t given the proper training for the job and end up doing things the wrong way because we weren’t familiar with the process. Oftentimes, these mistakes can lead to getting fired. However, this isn’t always the case. Sometimes, companies will see that you are a self-starter and are willing to learn and grow with the company, and in these instances, you can often end up being the one who gets promoted. In any event, it is essential that you do everything that is asked of you and that you show up on time each day. Being late or inconsistent will have a negative effect on your employment status. It is also essential that you follow any instructions given to you by your superiors, as doing otherwise could put you in danger of being fired.

4. Never Discuss Your Writing Process

Another big mistake that is often made is discussing one’s writing process with a potential employer. In most cases, it is extremely unprofessional to talk about a project you are working on. Even if it is something as brief as an email, never send it with a cover letter. It gives the company the opportunity to see how you think and how you would approach their project. Additionally, you are never supposed to show your work until you are asked to do so, so don’t try to impress with your polished manuscript.

5. Network

While we all strive to be our own bosses and work our own hours, sometimes we need help. Even if you feel confident that you can handle whatever comes your way, trust me, you can always use a little help. When you are looking for a way to get more connected, try reaching out to other writers and seeing if they know of anyone who might be interested in your case. Additionally, you should network at every opportunity you get. Most importantly, you should stay in touch with your contacts, even if it is just to say hello or to keep them up-to-date on your work. More often than not, current or past connections can help you land the job of your dreams. Good luck out there!