Offices can be a fairly treacherous place.
Ideally, co-workers will work as a team, to make sure all the necessary work gets done as best it can.
But some people just aren’t team players, and only look out for themselves as a means of getting promoted.
Such was the case of one of Redditor JudgiestJudgerson‘s colleagues, who even made false claims to human resources in hopes it might lead to career advancement.
Unsure of how to handle the situation, the original poster (OP) took to the subReddit “Would I Be The A**Hole” (WIBTA), where she asked fellow Redditors:
“WIBTA if I (32 F[emale]) told HR that my manager wasn’t racist?”
The OP shared how she works at a job she loves, but has sensed a significant change in the overall morale of her colleagues.
“I’ve worked for a huge tech company for 4 years now.”
“It was all great when I started, but recently there’s been a weird competitiveness in my department.”
“There’s about 50 of us, including 8 managers.”
“People have been whining about promotions and pay raises (fyi, we were given a 10% raise in 2021) and some are on 6 figures.”
“For context, I went from crippling debts and payday loans to actually considering the possibility of buying my own home after getting this job.”
One of the OP’s colleagues seemed even more determined than others to move on up within the company, and felt there was one specific individual who was holding her back.
“One of my teammates (t/m) Kate (White) has been complaining nonstop how she hasn’t had a promo since she started (a year ago) and how it’s because our manager (Lisa) hates her.”
“She keeps talking about discrimination.”
“I tried to tell her that sticking around at a place for a year doesn’t guarantee promo, but she doesn’t care.”
“So now I stay quiet and listen, along with our other t/m, Tay (also Black).”
“A month ago, Kate says to me ‘Omg, you haven’t had a promo for 2yrs’.”
For the record, I’m not bothered about forcing a promo.”
“If I deserve it, I’ll get one.”
“I never in my life expected to be on this money, so I’m in no rush.”
“Kate said the same thing to Tay about her lack of promo.”
“I said ‘ooh, maybe it’s because we Black’.”
“Then Tay and me laugh, Kate joins in.”
“It was VERY obviously a joke, I cannot stress this enough.”
“I even said I was just kidding.”
But, joke or not, Kate seemed to take the OP’s tomfoolery as an opportunity for self-gain, and her efforts appeared to pay off.
“3 days ago, another manager from our wider department says they’ll be looking after us.”
“Me and Tay meet Kate and she gleefully tells us that Lisa is on garden leave because Kate took the issue to HR.”
“I asked what she said.”
“She said Lisa wasn’t promoting any of us cuz she was discriminating with personal bias and racism.”
“Kate also told HR she’s an ‘ally’.”
“And now, she’s suddenly up for promotion.”
“Full disclosure, I lost my whole a** and yelled at her.”
“Told her she had no right to speak for me and Tay when Lisa has never been racist, and that she used us just to further her own promo agenda.”
“That’s not allyship, that’s self serving virtue signaling.”
“So I said I’m gonna go to HR and tell them it’s bullsh*t or Lisa is gonna lose her job.”
“Kate goes nuts, says her entire statement included more than just racism, and that Lisa is awful to her in their 1-to-1 meetings, but the whole statement will lose all credibility if I go to HR and say the racism part wasn’t true.”
“Kate could lose her job.”
“I don’t want ANYONE losing their job.”
“I don’t know if there’s truth to her HR statement, but I know the racism part is 100% untrue.”
“Kate said if I go to HR, I’m invalidating her experience.”
“Tay said she’ll back whatever I do, but I’m second guessing.”
“WIBTA if I go to HR with this?”
The OP also gave an update that Kate found someone to help in her cause, but the OP and Tay have yet to be questioned by HR.
“A dude in our department who is Kate’s friend got male savior syndrome and filed a complaint a month back against Lisa (he’s never worked with us).”
“HR have been investigating.”
“She said Tay & I didn’t wish to be named so we haven’t been approached.”
Fellow Redditors weighed in on where they believed the OP fell in this particular situation by declaring:
- NTA – Not the A**hole
- YTA – You’re the A**hole
- NAH – No A**holes Here
- ESH – Everybody Sucks Here
The Reddit community agreed that the OP would absolutely be doing the right thing, and would not at all be the a**hole, should she decide to tell the truth to HR.
Everyone agreed that the truth was more important than anything else, and if anything should happen to Kate’s job, that was no one’s fault but her own.
“Go to HR.”
“You owe it to everyone involved that the truth should come out.”
“Wrong accusations of racism in the workplace can damage someone’s entire life.”- Unit-Healthy.
“Absolutely go to HR.”
“Kate made representations about you that were untrue.”
“You need to set the record straight.”
“If they act on other things, that is their business.”
“But you do not want Lisa fired bc HR thinks you feel discriminated against.”
“Kate completely overstepped here.”
“Going to HR to complain on your behalf when you actually have no complaints is just another form of racism – like you can’t speak for yourself if you have an issue?”
“Tell HR the entire story starting with Kate’s complaints about not being promoted.”
“You have done nothing wrong here.”
“Good luck!”- Aylauria.
“Allegations like that can ruin someone’s reputation and if you know it’s not true, you should definitely step forward.”
“Just ask yourself what you would want the manager to do if the roles were reversed and you were being improperly accused of something that could ruin you and the manager knew the truth.”
“Kate made the choice to include racism in her statement.”
“If she was using your comment as the entire justification for her accusation, then the consequences for doing that are things she brought upon herself.”-HolyGonzo.
“The truth is important.”
“I (black, 23F) don’t ever agree with ANYONE losing their job over foolishness.”
“BUT a white person being accused of racism will go to the headlines nowadays.”
“Go to HR and tell them the truth.”
“Kate shouldn’t have included you and your other team member in her nonsense just ‘cuz she’s itching to climb to higher places and would do anything to get there.”
“Invalidating her experience?”
“And how dare she be UPSET ABOUT YOU WANTING TO TELL THE TRUTH?”-Maiahnnaise.
‘She’s probably lying about the other parts of her experience too, so it’s not like you’re really ruining credibility she didn’t have.”-Sarioth.
“It’s mildly horrifying that HR took action based on hearsay and didn’t follow up with you at all.”-k8tied1.
“Please, PLEASE go to HR and tell them the truth.”
“Don’t be part of the problem.”
“YOU are not causing anyone to lose their job, Kate made that dumbass decision all on her own.”
“The only way you cause someone to lose their job is if you say nothing.”
“Kate invalidated herself by lying, not you.”-SelfStudy657.
“Go to HR.”
“You’re 100% right that she’s not an ally and has no right to speak for you two.”
“She literally just used that to get a promotion and that’s just as bad as someone being racist.”
“It could ruin Lisa’s career and harm incidents of actual racism, if they were to happen later down the line.”
“Majorly f*cked up.”
“That chick is for sure an AH but definitely not you!”-Apprehensive-Bird93.
Some even felt that the OP needed to clear things up with HR if only to protect herself.
“Here’s the thing, you have to to go to HR now.”
“You’ve already showed this person that you are not her ally.”
“And if she is willing to nuke her manager/supervisor’s entire career over potentially false claims of racial bias, do you really think she would hesitate to lie about you as well?”
“Tell them that you had no knowledge that she was making the allegations of racial discrimination, that you have never seen this person discriminate in any way, and that you feel as if you need to protect your own reputation within the industry and not let other people put words in your mouth that aren’t yours.”
“Nobody in this world is going to look out for yourself but you.”
“And if you don’t say anything…you are linking your reputation with hers forever.”
“So if you believe this person to be a liar and a manipulator, then being linked to her forever is not a good long term decision”
“And at the end of the day, you aren’t refuting her claims.”
“You are simply stating that you can not corroborate them and you wish to have your name removed from the report completely because you can not speak on things you did not witness yourself.”-The__Riker__Maneuver.
Taking people down to work your way up has a way of coming back to get you.
Something it seems that Kate will learn the hard way.