An office spat has gone viral on Reddit. In a post Redditor u/848407912181 explains how she recently baked cupcakes for her office as it was her birthday. She made 24, explaining how not only was that the capacity of her oven, but that also there were 25 people in her office excluding her.
She explains that there is one person in her office with whom she has an issue.
“I generally get along with everyone else in the office except for this one guy (36/M) , which I will call Leo (not real name) whom I wasn’t on very good terms with because of the events that happened years ago when I first joined the company.
“Leo complained that I am ‘lazy,’ hates ‘cleaning up after my mistakes’ and I made him ‘vomit blood.’ I did ask him for mentoring help to generate the reports in the way he expects but he didn’t want to. Instead he asked me to look at his report and ‘follow his style.’ Fortunately I was redeployed to another role in the same department with a better mentor. We don’t talk to each other since.”
She describes how on the Friday she went around the office offering the cupcakes out to colleagues.
“When I reached Leo’s table, I tried offering it to him. As expected, he said no, but in a manner I find to be pretty respectful.
“After distributing the cupcakes, one of my colleagues came up to me and asked for the extra cupcake that Leo rejected. I told my colleague I actually baked just enough for the office, excluding Leo, so there was no extra cupcake. My colleague looks shocked so I told her that baking the cupcakes didn’t come cheap and since Leo was going to reject it anyway, I didn’t bake more.
When I came back on Monday, word has apparently spread to everyone in my department how Leo didn’t ‘get’ a cupcake and I left him out him intentionally. Leo didn’t say anything to me about the cupcake thing but I was told by a colleague that he was really upset and he ‘really loved cupcakes,’ and would have ‘came around if I had just left some in the fridge and leave him alone to get it.’
We’ve all had to navigate difficult people and situations at work, and tensions in the office can cause a huge amount of stress.
Workplace coaching and mentoring company BetterUp, of which Prince Harry is chief impact officer, gives tips for navigating difficult office situations.
Develop Your Soft Skills
Soft skills are essentially nuanced social skills. Things like listening well, being a team player and communicating in a healthy way are all important skills to have in the workplace.
Upskilling yourself with emotional intelligence and other interpersonal skills will enable you to navigate your way around office politics with more savvy.
Speak up for yourself
It can be difficult to be brave and make your voice heard. But knowing when and how to stand up for yourself is an excellent skill to have.
Speaking up when you or someone you know is being unfairly treated will show your strength. Plus, it will give office bullies less inclination to pick on you.
Keep it professional
It’s important to be friendly with your colleagues to build a sense of belonging at work. But there’s a fine line between being sociable and oversharing. Giving away too much information about yourself may cause others to use it against you in the future.
Unless you have good reason to, try to maintain a friendly but professional stance at work. Setting boundaries with your colleagues creates clear work structures. It also prevents your colleagues from taking advantage of you.
Too Much Information
Many people on Reddit argued that the user’s big mistake was to offer too much information by way of an explanation for leaving a colleague out.
“I think [you] should have kept the details to yourself,” said one user. “‘Oh, I actually only baked 24 because I knew from experience that not everyone would take one, and I only had 24 cupcake slots to work with’ would have been sufficient.”
Another agreed: “Response should’ve been ‘sorry none left.’ Why the f**k do we always feel the need to explain ourselves?”
“Yes OP dug this hole herself,” said one user. “Giving TMI.”
Newsweek reached out to u/848407912181 for comment. We could not verify the details of the case.