Dear Wendy
Dear Wendy

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  • #1110754 Reply
    advice seeker

    a few Fridays ago we went to the pub, just 4 people from my work including me. we thought that it would be nice to have a work barbecue on the work premises. we created a group chat with a few people on it to see who might be keen. we didn’t include on of the women in the office because we hadn’t asked permission yet from the boss and we didn’t want her to mention anything. the following Wednesday they asked for permission and everything was fine. I wasn’t working Wednesday, so when I came into work on Thursday they told me what had happened. I ask whether the women in the office has been invited and they said no because she left early. all day Thursday she didn’t seem right. it wasn’t until Friday morning, I asked whether someone has invited her yet and they said no, we still hadn’t invited her. when someone eventually went in to invite her she was very upset, on the verge of tears and said she was annoyed because the boss had mentioned it to her before she went Wednesday and felt that she is always the last to know anything. we all felt bad about it and that we never the intention. anyway new week started and she is still upset with all of us and won’t talk to anyone unless she has to. I dont really know what to do. I understand that we hurt her feelings but that was never the intention. but I feel now that the whole thing has gone sour and that I dont want to go anymore. I also feel like she needs to be a bit more professional about it. the women that invited her at the time said that we never meant to ask her las tor leave her out and apologised so why is she still acting like a child about it. I don know I feel into to half about it all. I see both sides of the story. but I just dont know what to do.

    #1110756 Reply

    So you deliberately didn’t invite her for ages (for whatever reason – why couldn’t you add her to the group chat or hell, just email her?!) then when she got justifiably upset your thought process is that she needs to be more professional and is acting like a child about it. Gee, nothing personal there I’m sure.

    You’re cruising for a meeting with HR if you keep this up.

    #1110757 Reply
    Avatar photoCopa

    If a social event is happening at the office, wouldn’t an email go out about it to all staff from whomever is in charge of planning/execution with all the details re: what/where/when? Cause if you’re hosting an event at work, you can’t exclude others and there should be some structure to it. IDK why you didn’t just include her in initial group chat and ask everyone to please keep quiet about it until it had approval, but overall this seems like the follow through on your group’s idea was bad. Her reaction makes it seem as if she was either the only person not invited until Friday OR regularly feels excluded, in which case I don’t blame her for feeling upset.

    You can offer her a sincere apology and be more inclusive moving forward. Cliquey workplaces suck.

    #1110758 Reply

    So you left her off the initial chat because you were afraid she was going to tattle on you? About what? All you fucking had to do was say, Hey workpeople we would like to know if anyone is interested in this event. If we have enough interest, we can then approach boss for permission.

    But no. You (the collective Mean Girls you) purposely left her off and then somehow approached all the other people before inviting her. You didn’t text her, email her, leave a sticky note on her desk. You and your cohorts purposely left this person out of the loop and now you’re hiding behind this facade of professionalism in that SHE should be behaving more professionally, when in reality your behavior was anything but.

    Nah, you and your mates are bullies. Do better.

    #1110761 Reply

    Ange nailed it! You excluded her purposely, and I can tell you felt guilty because you kept asking if anyone had asked her yet. You knew you were being jerks. And now she’s justifiably upset. Apologize, be nice, stop excluding her.

    #1110762 Reply


    #1110765 Reply

    It’s weird that you started a group chat with a whole bunch of people and purposefully left one person out. The reasoning “she might mention it to the boss first” isn’t totally sound either. That could have been easily solved… “hey, we’re gaging interest in this bbq and then so and so will ask the boss.” AND THEN, after the boss was asked, nobody mentioned it to her for a couple of days.

    Workplace cliques are the worst. You don’t exclude ONE person, even if you don’t particularly care for that person. It makes a hostile working environment.

    Off the clock is different. Although I still wouldn’t exclude only one person.

    Be better.

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