That's What She Said

Phyllis and Bob’s Wedding

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First off, let’s hear it for the HR Hero in last night’s episode. As he put it, “Toby, yeah!” I’m not sure what is going to happen with that story line, but it can’t be good that Hollywood thinks it’s funny for the HR manager to land an attractive model. Or could it?

So Michael ruins the wedding, who would have guessed it? With Michael’s egregious behavior, you might hope that Phyllis could make a claim against Dunder Mifflin. After all, if she can be fired for boorish conduct at an office party, why can’t she sue the company when Michael ruins her party? But she can’t. Being a jerk is not illegal. As much as I wish that it were, it just is not.

That is not to say, however, that when managers act like jerks at work it won’t come back to haunt their employers. It usually does and, too often, it takes the form of a lawsuit. So what solves the problem of boorish workplace behavior? Training. While the proper training may cost the company some money initially, failing to train managers to effectively communicate with all of their employees (and not just the ones they like), will certainly cost more at the end of the day.

And, while always funny on television, the company’s training should probably not test any of Pavlov’s theories.