coworkers are having an affair and one might get promoted to manage the other, boss wants me to help his friends, and more

It’s five answers to five questions. Here we go…

1. My coworkers are having an affair and one is up for a promotion to manage the other

Two colleagues (“Chris” and “Jamie”) are having an affair, and have been for several years. They’re both married. Only a few people know (I think), and I haven’t heard anyone gossiping about it.

But now, Jamie’s up for a promotion that would make Jamie a C-level exec and Chris’s boss. I don’t work directly with either of them, but this seems like a terrible idea. It would technically put Chris’s spouse in Jamie’s reporting line. We’re also a large employer in a small town. If things blow up, it will have a real impact on the company’s reputation. We’re already just getting over a low-key sexual harassment scandal from a few years ago.

What’s my responsibility here? I don’t want to gossip, but Jamie’s well-liked and -respected and has a good shot at getting this promotion if no one says anything (and I could even support that if I wasn’t worried about the potential fallout from the affair). If I need to say anything, who do I say it to? The search chair? HR? Chris and/or Jamie?

I did see this article, but I’m in a different position — I’m not making the hiring decision. I’d say I’m roughly equal in the hierarchy, in a very different function.

Ooooh, this is tough. Are you absolutely certain your information is accurate? If so, it’s really something that the search chair needs to know. Jamie can’t be Chris’s boss (for all the reasons I talk about here), and it would be terribly unfair to Chris’s spouse to be in Jamie’s reporting line too.

I think the way to navigate this is to discreetly give someone a heads-up about what you’ve heard (or know, depending on where the info came from) along with a very clear caveat about your level of certainty. If you’re anything less than 100% certain, explain that very clearly — as in, “I can’t say with 100% certainty that this is true. It’s possible that it’s wrong. But I felt I needed to pass it along to you so that you can decide how to handle it and whether it’s worth checking into.” I’d probably go to HR rather than the search chair, simply because HR tends to be trained to understand why this would be a huge problem if it’s true. The search chair may or may not handle it appropriately … although if you know that person well enough and trust their judgment on this kind of thing, then they could be an alternative.

And to be clear, this isn’t about reporting an affair. It’s about reporting a serious potential management problem.

2. My boss wants me to help his friends and told me I have to do anything he tells me to

I work as an executive assistant to my company’s “CEO.” I use the quotations because essentially he is a trustafarian hiding behind a C-level status at a family-owned company. He was a friend before he was my boss, and our work relationship is atypical in the sense that we are pretty casual. I get my work done and I keep my side of the street clean, but lately he’s been sub-contracting me out to other people for work under the guise of “you helping my friends in turn helps me.” I am not okay with this.

It all came to a head recently when he and the guy he shares an office with decided to fire their office manager. My boss now expects me to cover her share of his work AND do things that were clearly the other partner’s responsibility …meanwhile, cutting my pay $1K a month because I don’t do my boss’s personal books anymore. Essentially he’s reducing my pay, adding more tasks, and loaning me out to others.

Am I crazy to be offended by this and say it’s not okay? I stated that I would not be comfortable doing things for his business partner because I am not compensated by that person, and his response was simply that I’m overpaid and I’ll do anything he tells me to. I want to quit, but don’t have anything lined up. Am I being a brat or do I actually have a valid complaint?

Yes, you have a valid complaint. It’s not reasonable to cut your pay and add more work. And it’s definitely not reasonable to respond to your concerns with “you’ll do anything I tell you to.” That last part makes him a jerk.

It is your boss’s prerogative if he wants your job to include sub-contracting for other businesses, but he should really have told you that at the outset and he should realize that it’s something you might not be up for. That doesn’t mean that you can just veto it now; if this is now the job (and it sounds like it is), you need to decide if you want the job under these terms or not.

It sounds like there are a number of reasons to start looking for a new job so that you can quit this one.

3. I interviewed for one job, got referred to a different one, and want to ask about the first one again

I recently was invited for a Skype interview with a great company. The interview went exceptionally well (they went so far as to inform me of that), but then they added that, after 20 minutes spent speaking to me, they felt that I would be happier in a different position and that they would refer me to their colleague. I was invited to interview for that position, but found that this interview was rather different. The interviewer seemed to behave as though he resented having been referred someone for the position instead of having chosen me myself — he even remarked that he found it “different” that they referred me. He asked me questions that I could not have known the answer to, and when I did my best to answer, continued repeating the question differently, implying that he was looking for someone with experience, despite this not being listed in the job description at all.

I’m fairly certain that I will not get asked to interview with them again, but after such a fantastic interview for the first position, I wish there was some way I could contact the first team and ask them to still consider me for the initial position I had applied for. I understand that this is normally considered too forward, but I would have preferred the first position regardless and felt so confident about my prospects prior to the referral. What would you suggest?

That makes perfect sense to do in this case. I’d email the manager for the first position and say, “I really appreciate you connecting me to Cecil. We spoke a few days ago and my sense is that it probably isn’t quite the right match, so I’d love to talk further with you about the X position if it’s still available!”

4. Explaining I’m leaving a job because my husband works there

I am currently in the process of leaving my job. The main reason why I am leaving my job boils down to the fact that my husband and I work for the same company in the same area. We do have different bosses, but we both work on supporting and building teapots. I do mostly support work, but I want to get into teapot management and my husband is the lead teapot builder.

So when asked “Why are you leaving your current position”? I have said “I want to start doing working more in teapot management and I am unable to do that at my current job because my husband is the lead teapot builder, and if I want to pursue teapot management my current company feels like it would create a conflict of interest.” I’m in the early stages of my job search and I haven’t been able to tell how well its going over with my interviewers. Should I leave my husband out of it? Or is it totally fine?

I think that’s fine to say, but I’d modify it a bit: Rather than saying “my company feels like it would create a conflict of interest,” say “obviously it’s not an option to work on a team that he leads” or something else that indicates this is coming from you rather than your company. Otherwise it sounds a little like you don’t think it’s that big of a deal, when you want it to sound like you’re assertively looking at the situation, thinking “nope, that’s not a good idea,” and taking the initiative to look elsewhere.

5. My job was eliminated, but I’m being told it wasn’t a layoff

I work part-time in customer service for a mid-size retailer. Yesterday my coworkers and I were pulled into a meeting with HR and informed that the part-time position was being eliminated, but it was definitely not a layoff because they’re offering us inventory running or retail positions. However, the positions we’re being offered are not just completely different jobs but have drastically different schedule requirements that are impossible for me on public transportation.

Obviously they have a legal right to do whatever they want, but how do I address this on job applications going forward? Is it okay to say I left because my position was eliminated even if it was “definitely not a layoff”? I’m afraid saying I quit because I couldn’t accommodate a schedule change will make me sound flaky even if the change is from regular office hours to working until 11 p.m.

It sounds pretty clear to me that your position was eliminated, which is the definition of a layoff. Yes, you were offered a different job, but it was a completely different role with a completely different schedule. They’re probably telling you that it’s “definitely not a layoff” because they don’t want to have to pay unemployment if you file for it, but your unemployment agency is highly likely to see this as a layoff — or at least as a change that renders you eligible for unemployments benefits — if you explain it the way you have here.

That said, you want to make sure that what you tell prospective future employers lines up with whatever your old company is going to tell them. Because of that, it might make sense to say, “They eliminated my position and offered me a different role with a nighttime shift.”

{ 178 comments… read them below or add one }

  1. MarinaZ

    OP#1– the only moral answer is to keep out of it. You’re not privy to the marital agreements of either person. I’m stunned that Alison thinks tattling is a responsible action.

    Reply
    1. Sara M

      I don’t agree. Even if both Jamie and Chris are in polyamorous relationships, it’s inappropriate for them OR their spouses OR any combo of them to also have a manager/employee relationship. So the setup the OP describes is unhealthy regardless of marital arrangements–if there is in fact an affair.

      Since the OP says there _is_ an affair (not a rumor–they state that they know for a fact)… I think they have a responsibility to make sure the company doesn’t set up a disaster waiting to happen.

      Reply
    2. Oryx

      Tattling is reserved for children and an inappropriate word choose for any adult situation.

      Regardless of whatever agreements or arrangements are in place they should not be in positions of power over one another.

      Reply
      1. Allison

        I agree that the word “tattling” is reserved for children, but there is an adult equivalent – frivolous reporting, maybe? It’s definitely possible for adults to report the behavior of other adults when it’s not necessary, like telling your manager you saw Fergus reading a personal e-mail in the office, or some other instance of rule breaking that isn’t actually causing a problem.

        Reply
    3. Ask a Manager Post author

      This isn’t about reporting an affair; it’s about people not being able to manage someone they’re romantically involved with. Most employers forbid that. The problem here is that they don’t realize it’s happening. (And really, how thrilled would you be if your new boss was dating your coworker and had hidden that from the person who promoted them into the position?)

      Tattling isn’t really a concept that applies in the workplace. There can certainly be petty complaints about things that don’t affect anyone’s work (like “Bob is five minutes late every day” or “Jane keeps tapping her feet and it annoys me”), but that’s different from raising things that actually do affect the organization’s work. It’s not tattling to bring the latter to your manager’s attention, and this falls in that category.

      Reply
      1. Christopher Tracy

        I was so confused by the first letter (it’s late, I’m tired). So Jamie and Chris are having an affair while Chris’s spouse works at the same company? And Jamie’s about to be promoted to be Chris’s boss, but then his spouse will also be in Jamie’s reporting line? So Chris and his spouse either work on the same team or, if not, pretty closely, and yet he’s carrying on an affair that clearly isn’t that discreet if the OP knows about it…

        Wow. This is a mess.

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        1. One of the Annes

          Agreed.

          Different topic: Alison, someone else may have already noted it below, but in your answer, you say that “Chris can’t be Jamie’s boss,” but it would be Jamie who’d be Chris’s boss (not that that changes the answer).

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        2. Karo

          So Chris and his spouse either work on the same team or, if not, pretty closely,

          Not necessarily – This promotion would be to C-level, so it’s entirely possible that they’re all managing completely different departments (Or, Jamie and Chris are managing two different departments while C’s spouse is lower-level for a third department) and don’t interact during the workday. I can think of a few different areas in my company where this could happen.

          But yeah, definitely a mess regardless!

          Reply
        3. Chinook

          Plus can you imagine how this could affect Chris’ spouse? If it is an open affair, the same favoritism that could affect Chris could also apply to their spouse. But, if it isn’t, then the optics of this if/when it comes out could be really bad if the spouse ever had any decision made by Jamie affect them negatively (I am thinking a David sending Uriah to the dangerous front so he can have access to Bathsheba type of bad scenario. This is also proof that there have been poor workplace decisions by bosses for literally thousands of years *sigh*)

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        1. Ginny

          It’s not about being involved in their sex life. It’s about appropriate management in their work life. Surely you can see the difference?!

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        2. Dot Warner

          No one’s telling Jamie and Chris to stop having an affair. They’re telling them that if they’re having an affair, Jamie can’t be Chris’ boss.

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            1. MarinaZ

              Is the OP in the same department? How is the OP going to prove the affair–photos? Hire a detective? Passing on gossip can also get the company screwed over. If it’s the OP’s word against either of the alleged lovers, I don’t see how anyone in a position of authority can take the OP seriously.

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              1. Ask a Manager Post author

                The OP doesn’t need to prove the affair. She only needs to discreetly share the concern with HR, along with a caveat about certainty, and then it’s up to HR to decide how to proceed from there.

                Reply
        3. neverjaunty

          People have explained over and over that this isn’t about the workers’ sex lives, and you just keep repeating over that it is. Seriously: why? Why are you so willfully determined to completely ignore that this is about authority in the workplace?

          Reply
            1. Ask a Manager Post author

              One of the rules here is that we believe letter-writers and don’t accuse them of lying. Otherwise there would be no point.

              The OP has said elsewhere in the comments that one of the people having the affair told her about it.

              Reply
              1. MarinaZ

                And so this admission in confidence should be reported to HR? The OP will not be trusted by any co-workers, and will find that such actions are counterproductive.
                Why not have the OP actually speak to Jamie or Chris?

                Reply
                1. Ask a Manager Post author

                  It’s not the OP’s responsibility to try to convince Jamie to withdraw from consideration for a promotion (and how would she do that?). Her role is only to make sure a person involved with the hiring decision has relevant information.

        4. Wendy Darling

          The manager isn’t trying to get involved in anyone’s sex life. They’re getting involved in people managing people they have a romantic relationship with. The only reason the affair is even an issue is because that’s the reason the search people don’t know about this already — the relationship is secret.

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      2. Sas

        I think it kind of is though. That is ultimately the problem that the people have gotten themselves into. Unless this poster knows EXACTLY what is going on, the potential of even bringing it up is essentially adult tatling. It is not appropriate that they would be managing each other, but it is equally not appropriate that someone else who doesn’t have all of the details, and who outside of a “relationship” would, to tell anyone about what is going on. They are both adults. If the sh– hits the fan, they made that decision. And, your involvement in the situation might not be favorable either. Mind your own business adult poster!! Unless you know for sure, one thing will probably happen, it’ll bite you in the a–.

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        1. Well

          It’s OP’s job as an employee of the company to make sure that the people doing the search are aware of a situation that sets up a potential very serious conflict of interest. (And it’s in OP’s self-interest, too – even if you’re in Engineering, you probably don’t want your Chief Marketing Officer to be having an affair with one of his/her direct reports).

          Again, it’s not about the affair itself. If Jamie and Chris were secretly married, or secretly siblings, or secretly-anything, you’d want the search chair to be aware of that to factor it in to his decision making. I don’t even think it’s necessarily a dealbreaker, but at the very least I’d want someone involved in the decision process to be aware of this and able to ask questions about it.

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        2. MK

          You are overlooking that, should things go badly, it won’t be just them affected, but potentially the whole company. And if the hiring manager (who acts for the company in this) is willing to take that chance, then fine; but they should have the information.

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        3. Just Another Techie

          But the “sh– hitting the fan” will impact more than just Jamie and Chris. OP’s whole company would suffer from the scandal, and there’s a good chance that would have an impact on the OP (lower bonuses because the scandal impacted revenue, possibly layoffs depending on how bad it gets, or even just future employers being more skeptical of applicants who worked somewhere with a giant scandal). Not to mention that it would definitely impact OP if the boss plays favorites with her romantic partner and starts denying plum assignments, etc to other employees. The OP absolutely has standing to bring this up.

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    4. Cecily

      Even if it’s a poly relationship and not an affair, it’s still incredibly inappropriate to be managing someone you’re in a relationship with. The nature of the relationship isn’t important.

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    5. Mike C.

      I get that it’s clever to play the “what if it’s an open marriage” card , but that situation is even worse because the candidate still isn’t disclosing a text book conflict of interest. This isn’t about judging someone for their behavior in the bedroom, after all.

      Reply
      1. Dot Warner

        Yes, this. What Jamie, Chris, and/or their spouses have arranged is irrelevant; what is relevant is that it will be difficult, if not impossible, for Jamie to manage Chris without anyone suspecting favoritism.

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        1. Apollo Warbucks

          Yes!

          Just look at the letter from the mum managing her daughter that was posted recently.

          It’s just not smart to have people managing others if they have a personal relationship.

          Reply
          1. Sas

            That was an incredible mess though. Extremely inappropriate by both of the parties. And, it was widely known that the relationship was existent in that. You can’t parallel that with this “could be scenario. Not the same or even close. One of those people or both of them in the letter that you mentioned should have been fired that day! It makes you wonder how those could be so blatantly obvious and have no repercussions at all.

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              1. JB (not in Houston)

                Yep. To be an effective manager, you need to avoid not only actually playing favorites, but also the appearance that you are or will play favorites.

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      2. Natalie

        Exactly. It would be just a much of a problem if Jamie & Chris were secretly related or best friends, no sex involved.

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    6. Mando Diao

      It is never wrong to tell the truth about something that someone else did. We can argue about appropriateness or maturity or even retaliation (which isn’t the case here), but I’m so tired of the broader cultural notion that we have to protect people who clearly don’t care about us. That’s why lousy people are allowed to continue to be lousy while the people with decent morals get trampled on.

      When other people are having an extramarital affair that’s jeopardizing a company that other people depend on, the question of morality shouldn’t be lobbed at the person who’s trying to fix the mess.

      Reply
        1. Mando Diao

          On a moral level, it’s never wrong to say something that’s true. I accounted for the possibility that it might not be mature or appropriate. But wrong? Nope. If you don’t people to know that you’re doing something wrong, the onus is on you to not do those things. Of course, you probably shouldn’t be doing those things to begin with.

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          1. Marvel

            I… really, really disagree, and I find it a bit disturbing that you’re stating this as though it were fact rather than your own personal opinion. There are lots of people who use “but I’m just telling it like it is!” as an excuse to say really terrible things. Just look at the current US presidential candidates.

            If you think someone is ugly, it’s still wrong to go up to them and say “I think you’re ugly” for no reason. Truth is not inherently moral. It doesn’t work that way.

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            1. Mando Diao

              I guess I don’t see a problem with people saying whatever they want, though I’m clearly not talking about spewing hurtful garbage for kicks. Most people say what they want anyway. You think words hurt? I think cheating on your spouse on and endangering a whole company is worse. My point is that it’s not an issue of morality when the thing you’d be talking about is worse than the act of talking.

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              1. MK

                It’s not at all clear that that you are not “talking about spewing hurtful garbage for kicks”. When you say “it’s never wrong to tell the truth”, that makes no conditions about the reasons why one says these things or how harmful it might be to do so.

                No one is debating the right people have to say whatever they want; that’s a given if you have freedom of speech. But having the right to say anything doesn’t mean it’s the right thing to do in any given situation.

                Also, I assure you that most people don’t say whatever they want, even if it feels that way to you; they censor and filter themselves to make everyday interaction in a society tolerable.

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              2. Mike C.

                I can construe a million different scenarios where “telling the truth about someone” would cause significant and undeserved harm to come to someone else.

                Would you rat out a gay worker to a homophobic boss in a state without legal protections for sexual orientation? Those words are going to hurt plenty.

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                1. Zillah

                  And hell, some stuff is just personal. If I tell a friend that I have cancer, it’s quite immoral for them to spread that to everyone we know.

          2. Susan C

            Disagree. I see where you’re coming from, with nobody having an obligation to cover up someone else’s dirt, but your first sentence is way off, in my book.

            I do very much think that if the harm clearly outweighs the benefit of telling a truth, it’s morally wrong to do so. Here, most of us seem to agree that the potential harm to Jamie (not getting an otherwise deserved promotion) doesn’t measure up to the potential harm to the company (conflicts and mismanagement affecting many if not all employees).

            But announcing a painful truth for no good reason? That’s not immature, that’s cruel.

            Reply
            1. Mando Diao

              Jesus, I’m not talking about going around spouting things for the sake of it. I’m talking about situation wherein attempting to fix a potentially public disaster will inevitably expose something else that is already wrong. The OP is under no obligation to protect people who are cheating on their spouses if the alternative is letting it go and possibly costing other people their jobs down the line if this affects the company later on.

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              1. Susan C

                Again, in this situation, and the general kind you’re thinking of, I totally agree – but, not to be overly dramatic, the way you put it is a pretty radical generalization. Sorry if I came across as too harsh.

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              2. Ask a Manager Post author

                Y’all, I think we are getting too far off-topic from the post and arguing about something that the post doesn’t require arguing about, so I will ask that we leave this here. Thank you!

                Reply
          3. Tui

            I think it’s easy to assume that people are keeping secrets for bad reasons but it isn’t always true. It’s very clearly not moral to out someone as gay, or to tell a domestic abuser their former partner’s new address, even though both of those are just telling the truth about someone else’s actions.

            You’re right that generally speaking, honesty is the best choice, and that generally speaking nobody should be morally obliged to keep anyone else’s secrets, but I think there’s a difference between telling the truth about someone’s actions that are wrong – in this case the action is hiding relevant information about your relationships with coworkers – and telling the truth about someone’s actions that are not wrong.

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          4. Carrington Barr

            “If you don’t people to know that you’re doing something wrong, the onus is on you to not do those things. Of course, you probably shouldn’t be doing those things to begin with.”

            And who exactly determines what is “wrong” … you?

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            1. sunny-dee

              I think he’s speaking generally, and we generally don’t need to define these things — affairs, stealing, lying about your work, drinking on the job, breaking regulations or professional ethics. Most of those are 1) obvious and 2) outside professional boundaries. You’re trying to push back like morality is unknowable or like MD is somehow intrinsically a hypocrite or being mean, but that’s not fair.

              Okay, to turn it around — in what world is someone having an affair with a subordinate while also managing that subordinate’s spouse a good thing? Like, what moral code or management technique looks at that and says YOLO?

              Reply
          5. Grapey

            I follow a personal philosophy of saying something only if it satisfies two of the following three statements:

            1)Is it true?
            2)Is it necessary?
            3)Is it kind?

            I don’t see how it is ‘necessary’ to butt into other people’s lives.

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            1. sunny-dee

              The OP laid out why s/he thought it was necessary — a very big potential for blowback for the company and a significant, unfair and possibly unrecognized issue for the spouse being managed by the mistress*. This is a case where there are (potential) innocent victims; the OP wasn’t talking about this with anyone about the affair for the years it’s been going on.

              * I don’t know Jamie is a woman, I just couldn’t think of a generic term.

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            2. TuxedoCat

              I’d say it’s necessary to inform the hiring folks because there are too many realistic possibilities this will go up in flames. Even if the two involved can keep it professional, outsiders who are aware of the relationship might feel really resentful or perceive favoritism. There might be unconscious favoritism going on even if the two don’t intend to do so.

              If the OP were butting into the two folks’ lives, the OP would’ve told the spouse allegedly being cheated on or spreading the gossip.

              Reply
        2. HOBBITS! the musical

          In some situations (most) it’s definitely a case of MYOB, but here I see taking it to HR from a different perspective –

          1) it’s not discussing, by which you possibly mean gossiping? (sorry if I’m reading between the wrong lines there). This is reporting a problem that is not just possible but probable and highly likely IF Jamie is promoted over Chris & Spouse – in a large company, a certain percentage of people will perceive misconduct or misbehaviour whether it’s present or not because the APPEARANCE is possible.

          2) this situation is way more than just two people’s personal lives; this involves the company and the people employed there in several important ways: mgmt credibility, staff morale, company reputation & longevity, etc etc – with flow-on effects as well because any negative impact on the company will impact local businesses; it’s similar to services in Windows which rely on other services to run, or on which other services depend. Once the possibility of this particular reporting chain scenario became a possibility the company became directly and specifically involved.

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      1. Artemesia

        The stakes are enormous if the OP has this wrong though? I’d want to be crystal clear about knowing this for sure and how does one know for sure that the relationship is an affair rather than gossip about a close friendship/working relationship. I once had a very close working relationship with a new boss and we very much enjoyed each other’s company; someone told me that ‘everything thinks you are having an affair.’ I was happily married with a second new baby and my boss was happily married with three kids of his own and there was never the slightest hint of impropriety between us — we enjoyed each other’s company and worked really well together on a difficult work challenge. It did make me very careful about optics but it also made me careful about assuming things unless I knew for sure — and how does one know for sure in this case.

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        1. JB (not in Houston)

          Yeah, but the suggestion isn’t that the OP go spreading around gossip among their coworkers. It’s to bring it to HR’s attention with a caveat about how sure they are about the accuracy of the information. The stakes are enormous if OP doesn’t have it wrong and doesn’t say anything.

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    7. Tyrannosaurus Regina

      It’s not about being the bedroom police; it’s about making sure people aren’t managing folks with whom they’re romantically entangled. And if it turns out there is no affair, it’s probably still worthwhile for Jamie and Chris to know that there are rumors circulating to that effect, because if “everyone knows” then it IS going to be a problem for it and they’re going to need to figure out how to mitigate the damage.

      Reply
      1. A Non E. Mouse

        It’s not about being the bedroom police; it’s about making sure people aren’t managing folks with whom they’re romantically entangled.

        My husband and I work for the same company and at the point we declared our intention to marry, there was serious discussion around dotted- and solid-line reporting because we were ultimately under the same C-level (different departments though, first line of intersection was the C-suite), and presumably both promotable under and to that line.

        Contingencies were explored “in case”; ultimately my department was moved under a different C-level for other reasons that eliminated the possibility of an issue.

        I cannot for the life of me figure out how that would be offensive to anyone – you can’t have a spouse managing another, and the same extends to any romantic relationship. Even now, in separate departments with separate bosses and separate C-levels, we’ll get jokes about the other having an “in” with the other’s department.

        It’s just a non-starter – no matter how society views the relationship or how salacious the gossip about it, ultimately you cannot have a romantic partner managing another, or managing a romantic partner’s partner. If nothing else it has the appearance of impropriety.

        My goodness we take care to make sure we don’t get “extra” benefits (tickets to ballgames or other events, for example), much less reporting structure issues!

        Reply
        1. NK

          I worked for a company that took this even further; they had super strict anti-nepotism rules so that two family members could not work there, period – regardless of whether their work overlapped at all. The company had about 1,000 employees, so it wasn’t that small. I can’t remember exactly how dating was handled, but if you married a coworker, one of you had to leave the company. Seemed a little extreme to me, but some companies take this very seriously.

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        2. TuxedoCat

          The folks I know who have been offended with this and are in out in the open relationships take it like we’re accusing them of having bad character. “I could NEVER be biased!”

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    8. Anna

      One of the last things Alison says in her response (and reiterates above) is that this isn’t about reporting an affair; it’s about bringing what would be the reason for a huge conflict of interest to the attention of people who would should know there would be a huge conflict of interest and what could be potentially damaging to the company.

      Reply
  2. Sara M

    #1–oh dear. As usual, Alison’s advice is great.

    I recommend HR over the search chair for exactly the reasons Alison details. Unless you are _really_ sure about the search chair.

    I’d love an update on this one.

    Reply
    1. kittymommy

      I’d actually thick HR would be better regardless, mainly for the fact that it removes the search chair from an even more uncomfortable position. By funneling it through HR the most appropriate department can handle it and loop the chair in without that person the “bad guy”.

      Reply
  3. The Alias Gloria Has Been Living Under, A.A., B.S.

    #4 I think you could also frame it as you don’t want to put all your eggs in one basket. I know a lot of couples who work at the same company but on the same token I know many others who avoid it. If the company has massive layoffs, gets sold, goes under, whatever, you’re both out of a job.

    Reply
    1. Engineer Girl

      This. I saw both people in a marriage get laid off at the same time and she was 8 months pregnant. It was a pretty scary situation for them.

      Reply
      1. TootsNYC

        Can you say “Enron”? Not only did the company have a large number of spouses working there, but often all of their retirement funds (both spouses’!) were in company stock.

        Reply
        1. Rater Z

          First, Enron had just popped into my mind. The warning about the retirement funds being in the employers stock was all over the news at that time.

          Second, it’s reminding me that my son just started working for the same company I have been with for the past 16 years but it’s not a problem for us since the stores are 160 miles apart. However, he should be transitioning into Loss Prevention in about a year and, at that point, we would not be allowed to work at the same store. I was talking with my local market director for LP last summer and he was very interested in talking with my son, but let me know right away we could not work together. He didn’t have to tell me that — I already understood and accepted it.

          Reply
    2. Witty Nickname

      My husband and I work for the same company, and we have had that conversation a few times. We are both in pretty solid positions with really good reputations (so if we were laid off, the possibility for at least one of us to get another position elsewhere in the company is pretty high – I actually have teams approaching me all the time to see if I want to come work for them), and we’ve been with our company long enough that the severance + unemployment would be enough to get us through until one of us finds another job, so we’re not too worried about it, but it’s definitely been a concern from time to time.

      Ultimately, the benefits of working for the company we work for wins out (and there are several married couples working here, so it’s a calculated risk we all take). But I do keep an eye on the job listings just to see what’s out there – I’d jump for the right opportunity, just because of that concern.

      Reply
  4. Chocolate Teapot

    2. I know the OP describes their role as pretty flexible (the job is whatever boss says it is), however adding more work and reducing pay is not ok, and I would start to look for something new.

    Reply
    1. Stranger than fiction

      Yeah, plus his attitude of “you’ll do whatever I say”. They really makes me go “excuse me?”. And this is his or her friend? Hmm

      Reply
    1. Ask a Manager Post author

      If I’m remembering correctly, courts have found that pay cuts of 20% or more can be considered constructive discharge, but that’s not a hard and fast rule. (So it would depend on what portion of her salary that is.)

      (For people who don’t know the term, constructive discharge is a legal concept where conditions become so intolerable that a reasonable person would feel compelled to resign, or where the employer changes the terms of employment so significantly that the same is true. It’s not illegal, but it can often mean you get unemployment benefits when you otherwise wouldn’t.)

      Reply
      1. LQ

        Yeah what portion of the salary would be the key to if unemployment applies here. It will vary by a lot of things, what state, what is the normal wage for this job, what are the other job prospects, etc. But it varies by state.

        Reply
        1. shweetk

          I wrote the question, I make 75K. He’s cutting me to 65K starting July. I’ve got a job lined up in September, but I’m wary of quitting this one before that because I get health ins, etc. Don’t get me wrong, I didn’t expect my question to be published, so I was pretty quick. The job is very easy, but it’s a principal thing. It’s also TX where chauvinism runs rampant and rich entitled men use their female assistants here to hold hands of other rich entitled men! I thought about unemployment, it’s definitely an option. He essentially did change this job so much I don’t have a choice except to look elsewhere. It will be considerably less pay, but much better work environment.

          Reply
          1. LQ

            If you can hold off until September I’d say try to hang on. A quick glance at the TX law doesn’t scream to me “Oh no problem you’ll definitely be covered.” You could call them up to have a chat (I’d ask about ‘quit exceptions’ if it were me…) but if you can hang on through September I would.

            Or if you could make it financially maybe take a couple weeks off and resign early before your other position starts :)
            Good luck. It sounds like a mess.

            Reply
            1. shweetk

              I’d be claiming in CA, they’re pretty lenient but yes – my company will ask for a resignation letter so…I’m not really a fan of UI regardless. I prefer work!

              Reply
              1. LQ

                CA would be much more likely to pay if you were working in CA.
                UI is there to help people and keep the economy stable, it is a great support for a lot of people and I recommend using it and not putting it off.* And depending, in some states it will increase your employers future tax rate.

                *For people who see this and think oh I don’t want to take government handouts blahblah. Would you not take money for a roof repair if a tree fell on it? Or a car accident if you got hit? It is insurance to help people when they need it.

                Reply
                1. Chinook

                  “It is insurance to help people when they need it.”

                  This is why Canada rename UI to “Employment Insurance” because they wanted to emphasize that it is insurance against damage to your employment (just like car insurance is about damage to your car).

                2. shweetk

                  Oh! Heres a question I meant to ask y’all…

                  Say I stick around until Sep and the other job doesn’t pan out right away ( it might be October). My current company wants a letter of resignation – but I think that’s to protect themselves. Won’t that possibly hurt me if I apply for a month or so of UI in CA? I don’t want to submit a “resignation” and I also want all my vacation days I didn’t use – which my company handbook says I’m entitled to “upon termination”. Is that their way of saying they don’t pay out if I “resign”?

                3. Ask a Manager Post author

                  In CA, they’re required to pay out your unused vacation days regardless of the reason you left.

                  But you’re unlikely to get unemployment if you resign. If you’re resigning, you can’t really refuse to confirm that in writing.

          2. AVP

            ugh, I would want to get out asap too. September isn’t too far off, though – can you hold out until, say, mid August so your health insurance doesn’t have a big disruption? Is that worth dealing with him for a few more months, or is it possible to make July 15th your last day?

            I would have to think that, as a manager, if I was cutting someone’s salary they would be out the door the next week, but I guess it didn’t occur to him that this would happen.

            Reply
            1. Elizabeth West

              I’d start looking as soon as possible, though–because it might take longer than OP thinks to find something. Then again, she could find something in a few weeks–and I hope that she does!

              Reply
            2. Natalie

              I think most places keep your benefits active through the end of the month, and if not perhaps OP could budget for a couple of week of COBRA coverage.

              Reply
            3. shweetk

              @ask a manager

              I know, but it’s almost like a forced resignation and I will probably refuse to submit one. Especially since I’m doing him a favor and sticking around longer than I should because he’s got nobody to help him over the summer. In TX, they do what they want. He bragged to me the other day that TX doesn’t have “sexual harassment” laws. He then said under his breath ” Well, they do, but we don’t want anyone knowing that.”

              I MEAN.

              Reply
          3. AvonLady Barksdale

            Congratulations on having something new lined up! In your place, I would probably have a freaking countdown and a mantra.

            Reply
          4. Ayla K

            Not sure if someone asked this in another thread, but is it possible to ask the new job if they’re willing/able to push your start date up a month or so? 3 months isn’t terribly long in the grand scheme of things but when your workplace environment is this intolerable, every day feels like a freaking lifetime.

            Also seconding suggestions to take vacation time off between now and whenever you give your notice, if possible.

            Reply
            1. shweetk

              I’m due to spend the majority of July/first part of August out of the office, but he said to not take “vacation” because he’s traveling over seas and wants a contact available. I want to tell him I’ll get with a staffing agency in August to find a replacement, but I’m afraid he’ll find one behind my back if he feels slighted.

              Oh the dancing we do!

              Reply
      2. TootsNYC

        For that matter, our #5 “It’s not a layoff, it’s a reassignment to a different shift” could qualify for unemployment benefits.

        Reply
  5. Jen S. 2.0

    #2:

    You are allowed to feel however you want. But your boss is in charge in this situation, which gives him power; he is within his rights to change the scope of your job, however obnoxiously he is going about it (extremely obnoxiously, in this case). Is it more important to try to make him act right, or is it more important to be happy in your job? A hint: you can’t make anyone act right, so there’s not much you can do to change his behavior.

    It’s probably time to find a new job.

    Reply
    1. MK

      I am getting a very off vibe from this whole situation: a boss who got his position via nepotism and is more or less a puppet figure and has a partner he is friends with sharing an office and has hired a (former ?) friend to work for him? It sounds like a mess all around.

      Reply
      1. Not So NewReader

        Yeah, this whole situation is kind of loosey-goosey. I could be wrong but it seems like the boss feels that OP “owes” him. If that is the mindset then OP is going to have a bit of an uphill battle on this one. Some people do honestly believe that we should spend the rest of our lives paying them back for any “favors” they have done for us. I’d like to encourage OP to look at this with eyes wide open. My first stop would be to look at the idea, “friends don’t do this to friends”. Your boss is not that much of a friend to you.

        I have worked with bosses that I consider friends. There were lines in place and neither one of us crossed those lines at work. For one thing, there were on-going conversations about what to prioritize because of time constraints. They recognized that I was helping them but given the amount of time allotted, I would only be able to do so much. After that I would not be able to take on additional. This did require regular conversations to keep things from getting out of hand.

        Reply
        1. shweetk

          My boss has no “time restraints”. My job is to wait around until he decides he wakes up, or just simply decides he wants to deal with any questions I’m waiting for answers on no matter how urgent they are. He is essentially retired in his early 40’s. He thinks he needs some fancy EA, when really he just needs a wife. I’m so glad I found this website – I feel so much better about leaving and I can do so much better!

          Reply
  6. New Reader

    I could have written letter #1, except that Chris had previously disclosed the affair to me and I would also be reporting to Jamie if the promotion went through. I also don’t trust either the search chair or HR. I’m afraid that if I say anything and it’s known that I did that there would be negative consequences for me.

    Allison – any advice with that twist in the situation?

    Reply
    1. Sarahnova

      Who do you fear the negative consequences from? Your “Jamie”, or HR/leadership?

      If it’s the latter, I think your environment may be too dysfunctional to save, I’m afraid. If you have no realistic prospect of being able to prevent or mitigate the negative consequences of Jamie’s promotion without hurting yourself badly, your hands may be tied. Time for a job hunt?

      Reply
    2. Artemesia

      I think in any situation like this the OP would not be the only people who know and there are likely to be negative consequences for reporting. I have trouble believing if it has been going on for years that the POB don’t know. I certainly would have no faith in HR and would assume that the choice to report this was the choice to plan to leave the job. It is the one situation where the only option seems to me to be the very slimy plan to send an anonymous note.

      Reply
    3. kittymommy

      Hmm, any way to anonymously report it? I know it’s not ideal and probably won’t be taken as seriously, but at least you’ve said something?

      Reply
  7. Sourire

    #1 – Yikes, this is definitely something your company should know. If it makes you feel better about reporting it, remember that this is information they should know even if it wasn’t an affair and Chris and Jamie were just dating without having disclosed it. It’s the relationship/conflict of interest you are making HR aware of, the fact that it’s an affair (and one of the spouses also works for your company) just adds another layer.

    Also, this makes me wish I worked somewhere less dysfunctional/where this situation isn’t the norm. I have multiple coworkers who are married to each other, in various levels of management, including one who used to be married to Supervisor X and is now married to someone C-level. Trust me when I say that if your workplace doesn’t already have these kinds of crazy dynamics, you do not want them!

    Reply
  8. K.

    #2: I was through at “cutting my pay $1K a month.” That’s a big deal. And your boss is a tool on top of that? Find a new job and get out.

    Reply
    1. Joseph

      Exactly. OP doesn’t give a point of reference, but as an executive assistant at a family-owned company, it’s unlikely OP is making six-figures…and frankly, even if OP was pulling $120k, that would still be a 10% pay cut.

      They’re asking you to do more work, for less pay, and your boss is being a jerk. “You’re still overpaid even though I just cut your pay X%” Really?

      In situations like these, I always wonder what the boss is thinking. Does he think that because you’re friends, he can treat you however and you’ll let it slide? Does he assume you’ll stick around regardless, so he’ll never get into a situation where you leave and he suddenly needs to pay the higher salary that qualified candidates would expect from a combined office manager/executive assistant role?

      Reply
      1. RVA Cat

        I think the boss is an entitled jerk who’s never had any real consequences for his behavior. Time to move on from the job and probably the friendship.

        Reply
      2. K.

        I’m trying to think of a situation in which I would stay put after losing a grand a month, and I don’t think I can come up with one. Below a certain income threshold, that’s a significant amount of money. Less money and fewer responsibilities is a demotion, which I wouldn’t be cool with. Less money and the same duties isn’t cool either. Less money and MORE work? Hell no.

        Even if you can afford the lost income, reducing pay sends a terrible message. It is quite literally telling the OP she’s not valued highly, and why should she stick around somewhere she’s undervalued?

        Reply
    2. Sans

      Yeah, if a boss ever cut my pay and then said “You’ll do whatever I tell you to do” I would go home, update my resume, and start a very urgent and energetic job search.

      Reply
    3. shweetk

      I know. Again, I wrote my question in haste since I never figured it would be published. I DO get a lot of “freedom”, which is really disguised control i..e “paid vacations” since he won’t let me take actual vacations because I’ll go off the radar if I’m actually on vacation, and I don’t have to keep regular office hours. There are more cons than pros, but the theme is that I am a commodity and he owns me. He tried to say once “I don’t own you, but I do own your time.”

      It’s all really insane, I just hate quitting. I REALLY don’t want to be on umemployment until Sep (when new job starts) and I really don’t want to fuss with the whole health insurance lapse ( I get full benefits.)

      This job’s suck quality comes in waves. He’s usually really fun and jovial and normal – but then he gets these INSANE power trip dips where he says stupid shit (usually when something money related is happening in his little trustfund world) and it’s like he’s projecting. I’m not making excuses, I just feel like I need to relay that it’s not ALL bad. I’ve managed to save alot of money because of him offering me this job a year ago but it’s definitely time to bounce… the friendship as well!

      Thanks everyone for their opinions, it’s nice to know I’m not thinking crazy!

      Reply
      1. NK

        Wait, you have a new job starting in September? As much as the situation sucks, I’d definitely suck it up and deal for another 3 months.

        Reply
        1. K.

          Yeah, that’s a key piece of information! If there’s a finite end date, yeah, she should stay until then. 2-3 months is not a long time – if she didn’t have a job lined up, it would very likely take her at least that long to find a new one.

          Reply
      2. Chameleon

        Oh, LW, you are working for a Darth Boss. I know you are thinking “there is still good in him, I can feel it!” nevertheless he still blew up a planet (metaphorically speaking, and with a nod to Captain Awkward).

        From the outside, he honestly sounds like an ass and you owe him nothing. If you want to hang in for your own sake, do so, but you are SO RIGHT TO GET THE HELL OUT and you don’t have to feel in the least bad for quitting.

        Reply
  9. S.I. Newhouse

    OP 1: Frankly, this situation sounds like a train wreck regardless of what actions you take, but I will say this. Unless you know for absolute certain, first hand, that they are having an affair, you can’t do anything.

    Reply
    1. shep

      I agree. I also agree with Alison in theory, but in practice, there are so many messy variables (knowing for sure; knowing how HR will react and how your information, even if given in good faith, will reflect on you; what happens the office learns I’m the one who brought the information to HR, etc.).

      Of course, Alison is on the money, but if I were in your shoes, I’m not sure if I’d be able to report this to HR without some trepidation at damaging my own standing in the company, rightly or wrongly.

      Reply
  10. Dangerfield

    #1, ouch. I guess my question is, if Jamie gets this promotion and six months down the line it comes out that s/he is managing both someone s/he is having an affair with and the affair partner’s spouse and it all kicks off, is anyone going to be able to say, “But OP#1 knew about it and didn’t say anything!”

    Because if not, if you’re the only person who knows that you know, I’d be tempted to keep quiet. I wouldn’t like doing it but the risk of it all blowing up in my face is just too much.

    It’s a shame that this is exactly the situation where an anonymous tip would lack credibility.

    Reply
    1. NK

      I think it’s pretty unlikely that OP would face repercussions for not saying anything. Not to mention that anyone who knows that OP knows by definition also knows. I think speaking up is probably the right thing to do, but I’m with you, I’d have a really hard time reporting it.

      Reply
    2. Rusty Shackelford

      OP could always say “I wondered if something was going on, but there wasn’t enough evidence to make me comfortable saying anything.”

      Reply
  11. LQ

    #5
    Sorry but I have to jump in about the unemployment thing. This varies from state to state. (Yes I say that every time, it’s basically always true.) You should definitely apply and I completely agree that this is likely a part of why the company is saying it. But I don’t know that you’d always get unemployment. Part-time job rules are often different, and these things can vary a lot based on what they are paying you and other things about the changes.

    Don’t assume you’ll get unemployment. DO APPLY! If they deny it, appeal. But I wouldn’t count on that for sure.

    That said I’d definitely call it a layoff when asked why I left. They are laying you off from one job and you are getting another job offer you are turning down. That seems entirely reasonable to me.

    Reply
    1. starsaphire

      Agree 100%. Do apply for your UI! It can’t hurt to try for it. Talk to someone at the UI office if that’s a possibility, because it’s almost certain that they’ll know the law and have the best advice for you.

      I was in a layoff interview in which I was flat-out told by the executive handing me the severance paperwork that “if you accept severance, you will not qualify for unemployment.” It was a total bare-faced lie, but thankfully I was tipped off by a manager that “you should always check with unemployment regardless.”

      In other words, they can tell you whatever they want to tell you, but they can’t wish away the law. Do apply for UI, and do appeal if they try to fight it. The people at the UI office are far, far, far less likely to lie to you than executives who are trying to save their company some cash. ;)

      Reply
      1. Elizabeth West

        Yeah, that’s bogus. I got six weeks; severance when I was laid off, and the only way it affected UI was that it didn’t start until the severance ended. But I was able to apply for it right away. They just deferred the UI start date.

        Reply
          1. starsaphire

            Yeah, it was totally bogus; I had no problem getting the UI.

            I am so grateful to that awesome manager for tipping me the wink! She couldn’t come out and say, “That person just totally lied to you” because she still worked for the company, but she very carefully said, “You should always check with unemployment,” with a big lean on the “always” part. Subtle, but effective. :)

            Reply
      2. LQ

        Yikes! Yeah. There are definitely some companies that say that. Sometimes out of ignorance, sometimes malice. Also? In most states you can’t “waive” your right to UI. Say your employer says, sign this piece of paper saying you won’t file or we won’t give you your finale check. 1. They are a HORRIBLE company doing many many things wrong. 2.That piece of paper won’t matter at all to UI. You can’t give up your rights. (Same as when you start with a company.)

        Apply apply apply!

        (If you are concerned about taking money from others you aren’t, it doesn’t work that way, and you can hold the money and give it to a charity if you don’t need it and would rather it benefit others.)

        Reply
  12. newlyhr

    it would be almost impossible for someone in HR to verify the accuracy of the information about the affair. The parties will probably deny it, and you can’t really refuse to promote someone on the basis of what essentially is no more than a rumor. This is one area where I think that “no good deed will go unpunished.”

    Reply
    1. Observer

      You most definitely CAN refuse to promote based on a rumor. Besides, if OP #1 is so sure, then I’d be willing to bet that there is other information out there that tends to confirm it.

      Reply
      1. AnotherHRPro

        Especially when you are talking about a c-level job. As an officer of the company, there are higher standards for conduct.

        Reply
      2. newlyhr

        do YOU want to be the person sitting in a hearing defending that decision? “yes your honor, we refused to give a woman a promotion based on one person’s allegation that she and someone else were having an affair. We could not substantiate the allegation?”

        Reply
        1. Observer

          No. But, do YOU want to be the person sitting in a hearing defending the decision?

          “yes, your honor, we had credible evidence that two people were romantically involved, but we chose to place one of them in a supervisory position over their romantic partner, the partner’s spouse and a full department.”

          Note, there is no indication of the gender’s of anyone involved. (Chris and Jamie are both names that work for both, and “spouse” is also gender neutral.)

          Reply
      1. Ask a Manager Post author

        Come on, now. Are you really arguing that it’s okay for people to manage people they’re in relationships with, and that it’s okay for the hiring manager to be denied that information while making their hiring decision?

        Reply
  13. sunny-dee

    Also, reading #1 …. is anyone else incredibly sorry for the spouse? On top of the affair, this person’s job is at risk — and they’re completely unaware of both. It’s just so sad.

    Reply
    1. Amadeo

      If this is truly the case and the spouse does not know, then yes, I do feel terrible for them. It’s a rotten situation to be in, and it is sad.

      Reply
    2. Chameleon

      Right? If Chris and Jaime end up taking it to the next level? “Hey, your spouse is divorcing you for your boss and also you are fired because it’s allawkward now.”

      Reply
        1. Patrick

          Eh it’s awful and I’m not saying there couldn’t possibly be something actionable wrapped up in all of this, but generally speaking firing someone because you’re sleeping with their spouse isn’t going to be something you can sue over (assuming the spouse is at will, which most people are.)

          Reply
  14. Actually

    #1: Alison’s advice is spot on.

    But please don’t refer to sexual harassment as “lowkey.” I don’t know the details of this scandal but dismissing it so casually undermines instances where it is really and truly a problem. And if it exists in a workplace, it always a problem.

    Reply
    1. Meg Murry

      I think OP was using low-key to modify the word scandal, not the level of sexual harassment. As in, people heard about it, and maybe it made the local newspaper for a little while, and people in the company were talking about it – but it wasn’t a huge scandal that made national press. But since it was recent, the company is probably being even more cautious, because they don’t want any additional situations to harm the company reputation.

      Reply
    2. Anna

      I don’t think the OP was dismissing it. She was making a distinction between egregious and less-egregious-but-just-as-much-of-a-problem.

      Reply
  15. OP #5

    Thanks, Allison. I had something else fall in my lap so unemployment may not be an issue anyway. There’s been some other weird stuff, like telling another person in my position that she won’t be eligible for rehire because she didn’t give two weeks notice that she’s leaving on the end date they gave us for our current position. The whole thing is a frustrating mess at this point.

    On the up side, nobody involved is having an affair with their employees, so it could definitely be worse!

    Reply
    1. Anna

      That…makes no sense at all. Why would your coworker give notice for the last day they’ve told her she’d be employed?! “That day you told us would be our last day? That’s my last day.”

      Reply
      1. Amy G. Golly

        “Actually, no, my last day is going to be three weeks after the day you said you’d be locking me out of the building, please notify payroll.” :P

        Reply
    2. starsaphire

      Super glad to hear this! I hope the new opportunity is a great one.

      The additional info here makes me even more certain that the company is being less than straight with you all. If you can, try to encourage any other affected co-workers to pursue UI regardless of what you’re being told.

      Best of luck to you, OP 5!

      Reply
    3. Jillociraptor

      Yikes! It sounds like your layoff could be a blessing in disguise, OP. So glad you’ve got a good lead, and that you’re getting out of such a weird place!

      Reply
  16. Recruit-o-rama

    Unless there are cold and hard facts at play, I don’t think it’s right to go to HR with this information. I have seen unfounded rumors ruin people’s careers and marriages. Is it possible to ask the OP how she came across this information? To me, that’s a relevant part of the story and will determine whether it is appropriate to tell HR.

    Reply
  17. OP #1

    Just a few clarifications on things others have asked/said:
    – I do know for sure, from one of the people involved. This is certain.
    – Chris and Chris’s spouse do not work closely together, but both their jobs would now technically be under Jamie.
    – I wonder a little if New Reader and I work together, and, if so, how we’d figure that out.
    – I do also know that neither Chris nor Jamie is in an open/poly/nonmonogamous relationship, but didn’t mention it, because it didn’t seem relevant. I’m not judging the affair, just the potential new working situation.
    – Meg Murry and Anna have correctly assessed what I meant by “low-key.”

    Reply
    1. Judy

      If your company is large enough, do you have an ethics line? That could give you another layer of anonymity.

      Reply
      1. OP #1

        We don’t have an ethics line. I can’t think of any way to report this anonymously other than sending something through internal mail.

        Also:
        – I notice some folks assuming genders of Chris and Jamie. I’d caution against that.

        Reply
        1. MarinaZ

          So,perhaps you should not report anything. The OP’s true motivations seem more muddled than just concern for the company.

          Reply
          1. neverjaunty

            Are you that same person who likes to fly by and post multiple comments about how Millenials are awful?

            Reply
          2. OP #1

            I don’t know what else you’re suggesting my other motivations might be. I’m happy to clear them up, if that’s helpful.

            Reply
            1. catsAreCool

              MarinaZ has posted a number of times that she doesn’t think telling anyone about the affair is a good idea.

              Since the affair could seriously impact the company and also the poor spouse who would be working for his/her rival (possibly unknowingly), I think HR should be told.

              Reply
          3. Purple Jello

            Even if there were multiple concerns, the concern for the company is still pertinent, and any other concerns would not negate it.

            Reply
  18. AW

    Hey Y’all – It’s #2 here!

    Update: I left my asshole boss, stayed on an agreed 2 weeks longer to train new girl. I asked for my unused vacation to be put on my final check and he went apeshit – said that I was paid on the 2 vacations I went on … which is true … BECAUSE HE TOLD ME NOT TO USE MY VACATION DAYS!!! He wanted me “on call” so he could bug me throughout each trip.

    Can he legally do this? When I told him it was unacceptable he replied ” Don’t make me cry in laughter.”

    Reply

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