Data analyst fired for not following football world cup

04, Jul 2018 By Gaurav Gupta

In absurd turn of events, a consultancy start-up firm based out of Bengaluru recently started trending up on social media for wrong reasons as they fired an employee for not following football world cup. The notorious firm here is Stat and Math Solutions pvt. ltd. (SMS) which started its business in analytical consulting domain in late 2016. Company has around 60 employees and 30 cr of turnover. Its head office is located in Whitefield.

We tried to get in touch with the CEO of the company but, as expected, he refused to comment on the matter. We also tried contacting someone from the HR team only to be notified that the firm does not have a HR department.

No Football- No Job
No Football- No Job

Our team, however, did manage to get hold of the employee, Nirav Mehta, who got fired. Here’s what he had to say:

“I started working at SMS in Feb last year. I had my performance appraisal discussion scheduled with manager, who also is CEO of the company, for this Monday. I prepared entire weekend for the scheduled discussion. I revisited all the projects I had delivered during my tenure of 16 months in the company and was fairly confident that I would be appreciated and awarded with a good raise. But what happened in the discussion blew me away. I was asked questions about football and the ongoing world cup, which I don’t get chance to follow due to stressful work life. When I failed to answer those questions, I  was asked to resign. I was left with no option.”

Though the move of firing an employee over his lack of knowledge and interest in a game is shockingly unprecedented and absurd, it surprisingly met with lot of support from football enthusiasts across the nation.

Mr Batra, who was strolling in his Brazilian jersey at connaught place, said : I would say SMS is the next McKinsey of the world. People who prefer to watch cricket over football, indeed have low IQ and its proven fact. I started watching football in early 2000s. I am big Arsenal fan, I hope they win the world cup this time.

Shreya, an interior designer at heart and a HR by profession said : As an HR I really appreciate this move. I am thinking of implementing this in my current organization. It would help us reduce a lot of cost on appraisals since not many employees are football fans. It would also make firing process easier.

Rishab Puri, a fitness enthusiast from Chandigarh said : I think its very innovative way on deciding employee’s true worth and value. Anyone can do a crash course and learn analytics, but to follow football, you need to be really smart and intellectual. Though I am not so keen in world cup this year as both my favorite teams, Netherlands and Holland, failed to qualify, I am still following the world cup.

Priya, a student speaking on football said : I am not a fan myself, but I do follow football to impress my boyfriend. He is crazy football fan, and though I have no plans to allow him to watch this stupid game over the ever-so-interesting soap operas after marriage, I watch it now to get him to marry me.

There seems to be unanimity in associating football followers with brains, just as there is in associating Salman Khan fans with dumbness, but is the correlation really that strong? Our guess is as good as yours. But looking at the way data science is taking over, we can foresee lot more organizations using innovative ways to hire and appraise talents. Like, appraising talents based on their likes on facebook, firing employee for not watching Nolan’s movie, or hiring someone for tweeting over 20k tweets with keyword “football”.