The following is a dramatization

The names have been changed to protect the innocent.

Let's hypothesize for a moment. Let's pretend you were a "rocker guy" type of person. A married "rocker guy". And let's say for a moment your wife worked in a small office. Let's set up the scene for a moment:

There are about 4 or 5 other women in the office that work in your department. Your boss prefers not to come out of his office, but offer "advise" on how things should be run via email, sometimes all in caps. Your boss isn't really sure who does what and promises to teach you new things but never does. The owner of your company is about your age, inherited the business from dad, and spends more time networking and playing golf than actually running the business.

Recently, the husband of one of your co-workers is diagnosed with cancer. Your co-worker is trying to get by on one paycheck and all the other gals in the office rally around her to support her. After a long battle, your co-worker's husband loses and passes away. The funeral is scheduled for a work day, so most of the office goes and then hangs for a while afterward to chat so everyone gets in somewhere around lunch time.

You then get an email from the owner that goes something like this:

"As we all know, last week was a very sad one with the passing of co-worker's husband. It was good to see the support she received from all of you. Many attended the wake, funeral and the gathering afterward, which resulted in some employees being out of the office for extended periods. As our company policy only addresses funeral/bereavement for the individual employee affected, we have no set policy for other employees whose support involves being out of the office.

I appreciate employees doing some self-assessment as to what you think is an allowable amount of time to be out of the office at the company’s expense regarding leaving early for the wake and the attending the funeral as well as the gathering after. If in your assessment, you feel that the company should not bear the entire expense, please note on your timesheet with a PTO amount that you feel is equitable. If you feel it should be entirely the company’s expense, do not make any PTO notation on your timesheet."

What would you think?

Remember, the following has been a dramatization. It is not intended to reflect actual email notifications or events. Any resemblence to actual people or policies is purely coincidental.


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