Tom, a skilled Software Developer, found himself at the mercy of an unreasonable boss. For two years, Tom was the sole employee responsible for his company’s vital code base. However, his professional journey took an unexpected turn when a mistake led to a series of unjust events and an unfair termination. Let’s dive into his story.
Tom’s Diligent Work as a Software Developer
Tom had been working diligently as a Software Developer for a small company over the past two years. In fact, he was the sole employee responsible for coding the core components of many projects under his boss’s supervision.
But little did he know that his journey with the company would take a turn for the worse.
A Drastic Change
In March, Tom made a mistake during one of the updates, and from that point onward, his boss’s behavior changed dramatically.
Relentless Verbal Abuse
Each day, he would subject Tom to relentless verbal abuse, constantly berating him and emphasizing his supposed incompetence.
Boss’s Unreasonable Expectations
As if that wasn’t enough, the boss started making demands outside of working hours, requiring fixes for issues primarily resulting from his own errors.
Declining Mental Health and Code Quality
Unsurprisingly, Tom’s mental health suffered as a consequence, and the quality of his code began to decline.
The Unexpected Job Search
At the beginning of May, Tom’s boss informed him that he didn’t want to terminate his employment but suggested that he start searching for another job within the next month.
Taking this advice to heart, Tom began applying to various companies, eagerly awaiting their responses.
An Abrupt Termination
However, much to his surprise, his boss abruptly decided to terminate him two weeks later, sending a termination letter to his home address without uttering a single word to him in person!
He Was Shocked
The shock was palpable when Tom read the letter, which stated that his employment would end on July 1st and that he should use his remaining 20 vacation days in June.
Know Your Rights
However, Tom was aware of the labor laws in Germany, where he worked, which stipulated that employers are only obligated to provide the remaining annual leave if an employee has worked for more than six months in the company during that year.
Moreover, an important project Tom had been working on since February was far from completion because his boss had prioritized tickets from other projects, leaving Tom overwhelmed.
A Fair Proposal
Tom reached out to his boss, expressing his willingness to take the vacation days immediately, as outlined in the termination letter.
He Offered to Assist in Completing Their Project
However, he also offered to assist in completing the ongoing project if needed, proposing that the remaining vacation days be paid out instead. As he anxiously awaited his boss’s response, he noticed the chat program indicated that his boss was typing.
An Unfair Response
When the reply finally came, it left Tom disheartened. His boss claimed that the number of vacation days mentioned in the termination letter was a “minor spelling mistake” and that he only had six days left.
Seeking Legal Advice
Realizing the unfairness of the situation, Tom sought advice from a friend of his parents, who happened to be an attorney. Their laughter upon hearing Tom’s boss’s reaction affirmed his suspicions.
Standing Up for His Rights
Tom then composed a formal email to his boss, stating that he would indeed be taking the full 20 vacation days as stated in the letter of termination.
Moreover, he withdrew his offer to assist with the project since the termination explicitly mentioned that the company would not pay out the remaining vacation time.
The following week, his boss reluctantly accepted Tom’s request for the 20 vacation days. On the last day, Tom couldn’t help but notice the expression of defeat on his boss’s face.
A Project on the Verge of Failure
It became clear that the project, for which his boss had taken a loan, was on the verge of a colossal failure since Tom had been the sole driving force behind it.
Sadly, his boss had always adhered to the motto, “As long as it works, I don’t care,” without even attempting to comprehend its inner workings.
Standing Up for Employee Rights
Thus, Tom’s experience served as a reminder of the unfair treatment he endured and the triumph he achieved by standing up for his rights.
The tale stands as a testament to the importance of employee rights and the courage it takes to challenge an unjust termination.
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Featured Image Credit: Shutterstock / Roman Samborskyi. The people shown in the images are for illustrative purposes only, not the actual people featured in the story.