Dear Suri, To give employees time to celebrate the holidays with their families, and because there’s never really anything going at that time anyway, my employer gives everyone the last week of the year off (with pay!). It’s a huge bonus, and we all feel very lucky to work here.
One of the most fun things to do is to catch up with everyone when they get back: what people did on vacation, where they went, what gifts they got and gave… all that stuff.
Well, this one guy seems to be different after break. He used to be all jovial: cracking jokes, scheduling group lunches, and just being an all-around cool guy. I never saw him without a smile last year.
So far this year, though, he keeps his head down, doesn’t talk to anyone, and has started to mumble stuff under his breath. I don’t know yet if it’s about any of us, but I hear him swear a lot and say things like “This is so ridiculous!” and “I’m tired of this bullshit.” Someone said they saw him in the break room the other day drawing pictures of guns and bombs and stuff. As far as I know, he’s not an artist.
It might be all in my head. In fact, the more I think about it, this guy is probably no different than he was before, and I’m being silly even trying to make an issue out of it. Maybe I should just let it go? I mean, everybody has bad days (and sometimes weeks), right? — Back n’ Forth in Bogard, MO
Dear Back n’ Forth, Please report this to your company’s human resources department immediately. What you have described is no laughing matter; it is a serious situation. Qualified professionals in your office can assist your co-worker in getting the help he needs, while avoiding a potential case of workplace violence. ~Suri