NWR: Help... cousin needs advice.

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66nova Posts : 346 Registered: 3/28/06
NWR: Help... cousin needs advice.
Posted: Nov 14, 2007 5:51 PM

Hi, girls!  I'm asking this on behalf of my cousin, for he's in a serious pickle right now.  He started a new job on Monday, and experienced something really awkward today.  He got to work early, and walked in on his supervisor having sex on the desk with one of the other supervisors.  The "couple" freaked out upon getting caught, and later, both people asked him whether or not he was going to say anything.  A little later in the day, his supervisor came in and handed him a Bluetooth - something he had mentioned wanting in conversation earlier.  The supervisor didn't say anything... just handed it to him.  He has no idea what to do.  He has only been there a few days, and he loves it there.  He also doesn't know if either of them are married or in another relationship.  He's not sure if he should let it go or tell someone (and he doesn't know who to tell).

Has anyone else been in this situation?  If you have, what did you do about it?  He'd like any advice you can give.  Thanks.


Wedding Website: www.theknot.com/ourwedding/JanetSaenz&BenjaminMcDaniel

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CaribbeanBride08 Posts : 1,474 Registered: 6/13/07
Re: NWR: Help... cousin needs advice.
Posted: Nov 14, 2007 5:58 PM Go to message in response to: 66nova

  If it were me, I wouldn't say anything but that's just the type of person I am.  I don't do the whole gossip thing or the tattle tale thing.  Yes, it's disgusting what they did at the office and even more disgusting if either or both of them are married, but they're both adults and I would consider it to be none of my business.

I would also give the bluetooth device back saying that I don't need to be bribed to keep my mouth shut. 


http://www.brides.com/weddingwebsite/tobiandbrian

 

 

Daisypath Ticker

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aim2173 Posts : 265 Registered: 10/14/07
Re: NWR: Help... cousin needs advice.
Posted: Nov 14, 2007 6:06 PM Go to message in response to: 66nova

I agree with PP...just let it go.  No need to get involved.  And I would give the bluetooth back.

                                      Amy and Marc 

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EveT2007 Posts : 1,949 Registered: 8/31/06
Re: NWR: Help... cousin needs advice.
Posted: Nov 14, 2007 6:33 PM Go to message in response to: aim2173

Although I would be inclined to agree with the PPs that this is a private matter between the 2 consenting adults involved, I think your cousin should consider a couple of issues. 

(1) Does the company have a formal policy about sexual harassment, and if so are employees obligated to report any incidents they may witness?  Because if one of the parties your cousin witnessed is in a subordinate position to the other (work-wise) then the sexual activity could have been coerced on a quid-pro-quo basis, and therefore qualify as sexual harassment even if, on the surface, both parties consented.  If the policy requires that incidents be reported, your cousin could be subject to discipline for keeping his mouth shut (if HR ever finds out about the incident and that he witnessed it).

(2) Is the Bluetooth something your cousin needs to do his job properly, and is it company property?  In other words, when the supervisor gave him the Bluetooth, was he basically giving him a piece of work equipment?  If so, I wouldn't give it back.

I hope these thoughts are of some help in deciding what to do.  Since your cousin likes his new job and wants to stay at the company, in the absence of a "must report" policy it probably is best to keep quiet about this incident . . . but to be careful in the future to make plenty of noise when coming & going, knock on doors before poking his head into someone's office, avoid arriving early or staying late, etc.


EveT

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auntofthebride Posts : 9,354 Registered: 4/2/06
Re: NWR: Help... cousin needs advice.
Posted: Nov 14, 2007 6:40 PM Go to message in response to: 66nova

Dear 66 nova,

If he is in a "must report" situation, then he must report it.

Obviously, he can't go to his supervisor and say "Hey, boss, must I report having seen you and so-and-so doing the Horizontal Rhumba on your desk?"

Instead, as a new employee he probably has some dealings with HR. He needs to get his health insurance squared away, etc., enroll in a 401(k), etc. So, he drops by HR with some other question, then asks for future knowledge if there is any such reporting requirement.

"Hi, I have a few questions about the deductible on my health coverage. bla bla bla

By the way, I'm curious about company policy in regards to knowing about a possibly illicit romance between company employees. This comes up from time to time, and happened to someone I know. He learned of an illicit romance between two married (to other people) employees. Just so I know the exact company policy here, what should I do should I learn of something like that here?"

"Me" is "someone I know".

If there is no positive requirement that he report what he saw, then he should say nothing. The boss will be forever grateful.

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Guest
Re: NWR: Help... cousin needs advice.
Posted: Nov 14, 2007 6:47 PM Go to message in response to: 66nova

Don't start getting into litigious nonsense like sexual harrassment - this is obviously a case of consenting adults. I'd give the Bluetooth back. If it turns out to be a vital peice of equipment for work then another one may be offered further down the line through 'proper channels'. Your cousins ethics may be admired and see him progress based on merit rather than 'what he knows'.

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66nova Posts : 346 Registered: 3/28/06
Re: NWR: Help... cousin needs advice.
Posted: Nov 14, 2007 10:51 PM Go to message in response to: 66nova

Thanks ofr your thoughts.  No, the Bluetooth isn't required for work.  One of his coworkers has one and he mentioned in conversation that he'd like to get one (supervisor was in room at the time).  He thinks it's a "shut-up" prize.  He hasn't opened it yet, because he's still not sure what to do.  He checked his handbook, and he said that there is nothing about that type of situation.

Wedding Website: www.theknot.com/ourwedding/JanetSaenz&BenjaminMcDaniel

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auntofthebride Posts : 9,354 Registered: 4/2/06
Re: NWR: Help... cousin needs advice.
Posted: Nov 15, 2007 12:02 AM Go to message in response to: 66nova

Dear Janet,

I had a chat with my husband and with an HR-professional friend about this situation.

Both agreed he should give back the Bluetooth. "I don't need this for my job, and I am uncomfortable being responsible for company property that is not necessary for my job."

Now, for the issue of "finding" the two supervisors.

Big question: What were the circumstances? You say he got there early. How did he walk in on them? Was the door closed? Did he knock? Could it be interpreted that he was there early and was "sneaking" into the supervisor's office? Was he in a space that he would normally not be in? What motivation would he have for walking in the boss' office before the normal starting time?

Could the supervisor fire him simply on the grounds that he was poking around areas that were none of his business?

My husband and my friend both suggested there are two extreme outcomes possible, based on the assumption that you cousin totally keeps his mouth shut and tells no one:

1. Boss says "Hey, this is a guy I can really trust. I am consider him a valuable, trustworthy employee."

OR

2. Boss says "I've got to get this guy out of here, so I'll find some trumped-up reason to let him go during his probationary period. Then, if he blabs, I'll just say he's making that up because he's angry about being fired."

My friend and husband agree. Your cousin's best course of action is to return the Bluetooth, with an entirely professional and neutral excuse. Then, say nothing about what he saw. Finally, get out the resume and explore other jobs.

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Guest
Re: NWR: Help... cousin needs advice.
Posted: Nov 15, 2007 9:17 AM Go to message in response to: 66nova

I would simply schedule a meeting with the person who gave him the bluetooth, return it and say "What I witnessed earlier/the other day is none of my business and I do not intend on making it my business.  Please do not be offended, but I do not feel it is appropriate to keep your gift.  I hope we can resume our professional relationship and put this situation behind us."  The boss should get the idea from that statement your cousin has no interest in being any sort of tattle tale or snitch.  

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RoBelle Posts : 1,236 Registered: 3/28/06
Re: NWR: Help... cousin needs advice.
Posted: Nov 15, 2007 10:35 AM Go to message in response to: Guest

I have to agree with returning the bluetooth AND saying nothing.  It could turn out to be a sitcky situation.  Their word against his and I'm sure it will put him in a very most uncomfortable position where he will always have to be on his toes.  Then again, IF the "OFFICE ROMP" becomes public, they will probably STILL look at him wondering if he's the source of the leak. . .OH HECK. . . I don't know.   I agree with Aunt, get that resume together and get up outta there!!!


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Bride2008 Posts : 3,058 Registered: 3/28/06
Re: NWR: Help... cousin needs advice.
Posted: Nov 15, 2007 11:28 AM Go to message in response to: 66nova

I wouldn't say anything, other than politely suggesting they be more careful in the future because someone else may not keep it quiet. I would also return the bluetooth, it's a bribe, plain and simple.

 

"I came here tonight because when you realize you want to spend the rest of your life with somebody, you want the rest of your life to start as soon as possible." - Billy Crystal, When Harry met Sally 


Message was edited by: Bride2008

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Guest
Re: NWR: Help... cousin needs advice.
Posted: Nov 15, 2007 12:14 PM Go to message in response to: 66nova

He should mind his own business...unless HE is in a relationship with one of the "screwers" he should stay out of it, it doesn't need to concern him at all.

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classysassysara Posts : 27 Registered: 4/13/06
Re: NWR: Help... cousin needs advice.
Posted: Nov 15, 2007 12:30 PM Go to message in response to: Guest

 

 Interesting dilemma. I guess the major "moral" question for me is, "Who is being harmed?" If this is nothing more than sex between two consenting adults, then it is their business (and certainly not influenced by whether one is married or not--their business!) If, on the other hand, this is a clear case of sexual harassment, then getting involved might be the moral choice to make--with the understanding that being a "whistle blower" usualloy harms the person who reports more than the person who is guilty.

If your cousin really loves his job and fears that he will subtly or not so subtly let go because of what he saw, why not just put the Blue Tooth away, unopened, and keep it as evidence that there was an attempted bribe, should he need evidence?

Myra and Sara

 

 

 

 

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Bride2008 Posts : 3,058 Registered: 3/28/06
Re: NWR: Help... cousin needs advice.
Posted: Nov 15, 2007 12:34 PM Go to message in response to: 66nova

I don't think it's a matter of morality. I think it's more an issue of what is and is not appropriate to do at your place of work.

 

"I came here tonight because when you realize you want to spend the rest of your life with somebody, you want the rest of your life to start as soon as possible." - Billy Crystal, When Harry met Sally 

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tweatie2 Posts : 286 Registered: 10/25/07
Re: NWR: Help... cousin needs advice.
Posted: Nov 15, 2007 1:03 PM Go to message in response to: 66nova

I don't think he should tell.  It doesn't directly affect him or his job so he should just stay out of it.  I would give the Bluetooth back though.  He doesn't want to be put in the mess later on if they get caught again.

 


Soon to be Mrs. Hurts!!

 

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