How to let HR know you are not to be trifled with


*** This Article is Just For Laughs and should not be taken as advice in any form ***

As a restless, volatile creative with no interest in my day-job I tend to clash with HR. They have documented all of my disciplinary, grievance and dismissal hearings. They exist solely to back up Managers and safeguard the company from wayward employees like myself.


HR come at you with smiles and false promises like the biblical snake as it rolled the apple towards Eve with a reassuring nod that all was well. I imagine it nodded and didn’t speak, that would be absurd! All certainly was not well for Eve and you must avoid eating the poisoned apple that HR is trying to feed you. One way of avoiding incident with HR is to work quietly, agree to every Management request and ask for nothing in return. I prefer a more volatile approach.


If you follow the quiet approach you will be seen as a meek errand boy and will be exploited with extra work. I aim to clash with HR within my first 2 months so they know I’m a tricky customer. I know my job description inside out and refuse anything outside of this unless I’m making a run at a pay-rise. I also hint at a connection to the Unions or Employment Lawyers. Make them terrified to go near you.


In my previous company I rumbled them for short-changing everyone on holiday allowance and boldly claimed they were breaking employment law. They only looked into this after I threatened Union action from a Union I wasn’t a member of. It turns out they had been breaking employment law for years and quickly changed their policy. When threatening Management you must go big or go back to your desk.


In my subsequent disciplinary hearings I goaded HR with this. “So you either didn’t know the basics of employment law or you deliberately tricked people. Which is it, incompetence or immorality?” The second time I threatened hiring an employment lawyer the HR bulldog barked “I used to be an Employment Lawyer”. I quipped “I’m not sure if that’s supposed to impress or intimidate me. But let me tell you… it does neither.”


It’s possible that this maverick approach will impress one of the more human Managers and you will be earmarked for promotion. It didn’t happen in my case, I was sacked almost immediately.  


Next Monday: How to use your Manager’s jargon against him


Written by Martin Stocks

Follow Martin on Twitter @Stocks1986 or


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