Welcome to our new series, The Work Diaries – a space for you to share your experiences, advice, stories about bad bosses, crazy colleagues and wild workplaces. We’ll be hearing from industry experts giving practical advice about how to navigate tricky waters in the workplace, alongside Capsule readers (You!) sharing your firsthand experiences of failures, successes and difficult situations you’ll still trying to get your head around.
If you have a topic you’d like to discuss, share your thoughts, experience or advice about, drop a line to [email protected].
This week we hear from a Guest Writer from 9Honey who got quite a surprise when he boss pulled her aside for a quick catch-up…
I was working with a company I felt really passionate about. I loved the team I was working with and my boss, Thomas*, was a really lovely man. I worked very long hours, but it all seemed worthwhile and I felt like I was making a difference.
I was also on a great salary for the first time in my life. Plus, the office wasn’t far from my home, which made commuting so easy; in my previous job, I’d had to travel an hour each way and it just got too much for me. So I was working in my dream job and my husband told me it was so nice for him to have a happy wife coming home to him every day.
I got on very well with Thomas, and he even invited my husband and I over for lunch one day. We all had a good time and made plans to do it again soon.
But at work the following Monday, he told me he needed to see me “urgently”, and first I was worried I had done something wrong and was about to be told off.
I went to his office and he closed the door behind me. He put his hands on my shoulder and told me he had developed strong feelings for me and he wanted to know if I felt the same.
I was so shocked. There was no way I saw this coming and I didn’t have the heart to tell him I didn’t find him attractive in any way whatsoever. For starters, he is nearly 20 years older than me, and aside from that, I’m very happily married.
I gently told him I was flattered but I just saw him as a friend, and that I loved my husband. He seemed to take it really well and made me promise I wouldn’t tell anybody, especially not my husband.
The next couple of days were fine, and it was business as usual. But, I noticed Thomas wasn’t really speaking to me, or seemed to be avoiding me.
I thought it might be due to work stress, as he had an important conference coming up. But then I was called into his office, and he let me know he was “promoting” me and moving me to a different office.
I told him I was glad to be promoted but I certainly didn’t want to move to another office. He told me the decision had already been made and I wasn’t to argue. This new office was a long way from my home, and I didn’t fancy having to start over again with a new team.
I really believe the reason Thomas moved me to a new office is he felt embarrassed about confessing his feelings to me and having me reject him.
I went to HR to complain, but I was told my salary would be increased and I should count myself lucky, so I had no choice but be moved to the new office. Thomas never spoke to me again.
I ended up lasting only six months at the new office before I looked for work elsewhere. I was tempted to ask Thomas about his real reasons for moving me, but my gut instinct told me to just stay quiet, which is what I did.
I still miss my old office and my old team though, and I wish Thomas had just kept his mouth shut.