Plenty of people can relate to not having the best first day at a new job.
Perhaps you showed up in completely inappropriate clothing, or poured coffee over your new boss.
However, this story really puts things into perspective.
On Saturday, anonymous Reddit user cscareerthrowaway567 posted on the site describing his or her first — and last — day in a junior software developer role at a company. Along with the story, they asked the question: “How screwed am I?”
The post reads:
“Today was my first day on the job as a Junior Software Developer and was my first non-internship position after university. Unfortunately i screwed up badly.
I was basically given a document detailing how to setup my local development environment. Which involves run a small script to create my own personal DB instance from some test data. After running the command i was supposed to copy the database url/password/username outputted by the command and configure my dev environment to point to that database. Unfortunately instead of copying the values outputted by the tool, i instead for whatever reason used the values the document had.
Unfortunately apparently those values were actually for the production database (why they are documented in the dev setup guide i have no idea). Then from my understanding that the tests add fake data, and clear existing data between test runs which basically cleared all the data from the production database. Honestly i had no idea what i did and it wasn’t about 30 or so minutes after did someone actually figure out/realise what i did.”
The user followed instructions they were given in a document, but accidentally entered in the given values instead of their own. The result was accidentally destroying the entire database.
It begs the question of how a company gave someone the information to be able to delete their whole database in the first place. However, it looked like nobody was going to take the responsibility for the mistake, and the CTO quickly blamed the employee and proceeded to tell them never to come back.
“While what i had done was sinking in. The CTO told me to leave and never come back. He also informed me that apparently legal would need to get involved due to severity of the data loss. I basically offered and pleaded to let me help in someway to redeem my self and i was told that i ‘completely f***ed everything up’.
So i left. I kept an eye on slack, and from what i can tell the backups were not restoring and it seemed like the entire dev team was on full on panic mode. I sent a slack message to our CTO explaining my screw up. Only to have my slack account immediately disabled not long after sending the message.
I haven’t heard from HR, or anything and i am panicking to high heavens. I just moved across the country for this job, is there anything i can even remotely do to redeem my self in this situation? Can i possibly be sued for this? Should i contact HR directly? I am really confused, and terrified.”
The Reddit community seem to be more or less unanimous in their support for the user. Several accounts point out red flags such as the company not sitting down with a new employee to explain things clearly, or apparently not having anything backed up.
One user, itishell, placed the blame firmly on the management.
“That CTO is the one to blame here, sure it’s an accumulation of smaller errors made by other people, but the CTO is responsible to have appropriate measures in place and processes to prevent this. Sure it could always happen, but like that with all these flaws is just asking for it,” they commented. “He’s a bad CTO for letting that happen, but even worse for firing you and blaming it on you. He’s the one that should take the hit. He sucks.”
Other users bring up that this situation happened at Amazon, and the company was praised for how it was handled. Rather than placing blame on a junior employee, steps were taken to ensure the same thing couldn’t happen again.
After a lot of feedback, the Reddit user updated the post to add: “Just to make it even more embarrassing, i just realised that i took the laptop i was issued home with me (i have no idea why i did this at all).”
We don’t know whether they returned the laptop. However, after receiving thousands of supportive comments, the user is probably feeling slightly less responsible for what might just be the worst first day of all time.
Business Insider has reached out for comment.
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