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gift appropriateness

Discussion in 'Human Resources' started by Law questions, Oct 11, 2019.

  1. Law questions

    Law questions Law Topic Starter New Member

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    Bought a coworker a gift at her birthday party and she happily accepted it and hugged me twice.

    Then my friend later on told her I had a crush on her and she got upset and turned it into our boss two days later saying it was not appropriate.

    Should boss have even accepted it from her and got involved or told her that it did not take place during work hours?

    Could I get in trouble?

    What should my response be when questioned about it?
     
  2. cbg

    cbg Super Moderator

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    What was the gift?
     
  3. army judge

    army judge Super Moderator

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    What a manager/supervisor does while employed by a privately or publicly held entity when confronted with a workplace issue is NOT normally a legal issue.

    No one unfamiliar with what it is alleged you may have done, or perceived by others as doing, could NOT offer anything more than a guess.


    I am in no position to tell you what you should do IF confronted by your employer regarding a breach of workplace etiquette, policy, or protocol.

    Most people would simply answer all questions truthfully to the best of their ability.

    Some people would consult an attorney before doing anything.

    Some people might choose to say nothing when asked questions.

    Some people might decide to quit, choosing to avoid any negative confrontation.

    Again, you and you alone must decide what you will do.

    We all enjoy FREE will.
     
  4. Law questions

    Law questions Law Topic Starter New Member

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    I went with a friend that was a girl. My friend said that since we were going to a birthday party. That she would feel uncomfortable going without having a gift.

    My friend picked out a pair of earrings for $10 and a necklace for $35. It was a mom and pop store so they said the earrings were free. So the total was $35.

    My friend took the gift out of her purse and gave it to the birthday girl. She said it was $50 and that I bought it for her. She was really happy and hugged me twice. Once from the front and once from the side. Something I did not expect.

    The birthday girl went dancing and then was done and walked by me and my friend saying the I love you guys.

    My friend then disappeared literally. I turned around and could not find her.

    She showed up twenty minute later and said she went to go talk to the birthday girls friends.

    We stood around for and hour and friend said she wanted to leave and said I wanted to stick around.

    My friend took off again for 30 minutes.

    She came back and said the girl was upset that I had a crush on her and she was not interested in me. She said the girl thought I was stalking her and was going to give me back the necklace at work because she thought it was inappropriate because it was so much money ($50) even though I actually paid $35 and my friend had picked the stuff out and I had only paid for them.

    I did not believe the wild and crazy story and told my friend she was making it up and we left right then with me upset and my friend said she felt sick because of the loud music.

    I saw the girl at work Monday and she didn’t act weird or anything so I completely thought my friend made it up.

    I saw the girl also Wednesday in the hall and I walked by her and said Hi and she said nothing, but kind of fake smiled which she always does.

    Yesterday I asked her if she wanted to hang out over the weekend and she freaked out saying that she gave the necklace to our boss and that that wanted to keep our relationship professional. I was in shock that the crazy story was true and responded I’m fine with that.

    Should the boss have taken the necklace from her or told her that it was not work related since it had nothing to do with our workplace. It was at 10:00 at night at a scummy dance club.

    Could I get in trouble for anything?

    How should I respond when confronted by our boss or Human Resources?
     
  5. army judge

    army judge Super Moderator

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    You might be better off to speak to ALL of your co-workers about WORK related matters ONLY.

    It might be okay to say hello, good afternoon, and good bye.

    It appears there are things happening that you have no knowledge of, that could cause trouble for you.

    It is always easier to be professional, polite, and discuss only matters related to your job going forward.

    You might also sever the relationship (or at least cool it at work) with your so called "friend".





    No one can predict the future.


    No one can predict the future.


    That is up to you.

    Good luck.
     
    Red Kayak likes this.
  6. cbg

    cbg Super Moderator

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    The boss did nothing wrong. Whether the incident happened at work or not, the after effects are clearly affecting the workplace and that means he has the right to address it.

    If you do NOTHING else and do not address the girl you gave the gift to in any way whatsoever except as required by your job, it is my opinion that nothing else will happen.

    FYI jewelry IS an inappropriate gift to give someone of the opposite sex that you are not in a romantic relationship with.
     
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  7. justblue

    justblue Well-Known Member

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    Yep. Clothing, perfume, jewelry, cars and trips are on the romantic gift list. Non-romantic gifts are scratch tickets, scented candles and perhaps a gift card to a store (not Victoria's). A small, polite gift.;)
     
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  8. zddoodah

    zddoodah Well-Known Member

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    Your post doesn't really raise any legal issues, so I'm not really sure where you're going with all this.

    To what does "it" refer in these two sentences? Are you saying that your co-worker took the gift you gave her and gave it to your boss? If so, once you gave the gift to your co-worker, it was hers to do with as she pleased.

    In what way did your boss involve himself (other than by receiving this gift)?

    Why would your boss need to tell her this? Do you have reason to believe that your coworker was unaware that you gave her the gift outside of work hours?

    In the abstract, virtually anything is possible.

    Depends on what the questions are, but lying to your boss would obviously be a dumb thing to do.
     
    Last edited: Oct 14, 2019
  9. zddoodah

    zddoodah Well-Known Member

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  10. Law questions

    Law questions Law Topic Starter New Member

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    I think I’m in the clear?

    I got the necklace and earrings back in a yellow sealed envelope with a letter.

    Thank you for the thoughtful gift, but I feel uncomfortable accepting it. I keep all my work relationships on a professional level.

    Best,
    Girl’s name
     
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  11. army judge

    army judge Super Moderator

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    Isn't it a great feeling when things turn out well for everyone and you learn something in the process?
     
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  12. ElleMD

    ElleMD Well-Known Member

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    Giving a coworker $50 worth of jewelry is inappropriate at best. It doesn't matter if you got some kind of discount or a female friend helped pick them out. The coworker might have felt less awkward about it before knowing or hearing that you had romantic feelings for her, in which case I can 1000% understand why this gift suddenly took on a very different connotation. Double that when followed up by asking her out for the following weekend.

    Take the hint that she isn't interested, and be mindful of observing professional boundaries.
     
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  13. Red Kayak

    Red Kayak Active Member

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    Given that OP's "female friend" caused ALL of this, OP should examine what the meaning of "friend" is and ditch the meddlesome would-be matchmaker turkey. It is in OP's best legal interest to avoid this stupid female.

    The "female friend" insisted that she would not go with OP to he party without a birthday gift.
    The "female friend" insisted on jewelry as an appropriate gift.
    The "female friend" actually carried the gift to the party in her purse.
    The "female friend" then tells the birthday girl that OP has a crush on the birthday girl.
    It is clear to me that the "female friend" was trying to be a matchmaker; whether or not OP has a crush on the birthday girl, OP would not have even thought of bringing a birthday gift to the party, save for the meddlesome "female friend". (<--Any further contact about this should be limited to stating that fact.)

    It would be fitting if OP packaged the returned gift and send it to the meddlesome "female friend" with a note: "This jewelry you insisted on my purchasing for XXX nearly cost me my job, and definitely hurt my professional reputation. Keep it as a memento. Life is not a Hallmark Channel romance movie."

    However, having known similarly foolish young women in my youth, I believe that would be lost on the "female friend" in search of drama. Consider her a non-friend.
     
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  14. army judge

    army judge Super Moderator

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    The place where you go to WORK you should treat as a workplace, not a nightclub, a beach, a backyard BBQ, a coffee shop, or anywhere people socialize, gab, and/or waste time.

    Every minute you are at your place of work, you should be working, except the authorized times you are allowed to break, eat, or take personal relief.

    Every minute you are at your workplace is a minute your employer is paying you to do HIS/HER/THEIR business.

    Should you CHOOSE to do otherwise, you could soon find yourself among the UNEMPLOYED.

    Don't get caught up in social activities when you are supposed to working.

    While engaged in your employer's business you should be executing your assigned duties flawlessly; absent unnecessary interruptions, chatter, gossip, or otherwise NOT engaged in your assigned duties/tasks/functions.
     

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