When this woman is upset with an employee's behavior, she asks Reddit:
I’m the 1/3 owner of a company with 2 friends from college. Mike and Eric. I run the Technology side of things, so I’m not the “face” of the company, so I rarely go into the office. I have a 4-year-old daughter whose father is Mike. (We have never been in a relationship and chose to co-parent our daughter).
Mike got into a car wreck and required surgery. Eric was out of town.
My nanny is on holiday break, so it’s me taking care of my daughter and trying to run a company. There’s a project that Mike’s working on In the office, and I have to grab it and a portable server.
My daughter is already upset because she knows her dad is hurt. Getting her loaded into the car to go into the office was messy. She refused to wear matching boots and is in an elf outfit. At this point, I’m like, whatever, let’s go. The whole time in the car, she’s crying and upset. I get her to calm down because I told her we would grab some things from work.
I meet our VP of operations, Adam, and everything is fine. Until my daughter realizes she left her dinosaur in the car. She will not be appeased. We are in Adam’s office trying to get everything together to take to my home office.
My kiddo will not stop crying because Sara (the dinosaur) is in the car alone, and Sara might not be able to breathe. Adam and I are like, “it’s ok, Sara, it is fine.” I’m mortified and want to get my kid back in the car and home.
Adam has to run to the IT department to grab a few more things for me. My daughter is in total toddler meltdown over Sara the Dinosaur. A man walks by and tells me to “shut my kid up. This is an office, not a daycare.”I’m had it. I told him this wouldn’t be his job if it weren’t for this child’s father or me, and he could be the one to shut up or find a new job.
Adam comes back, and the man starts yelling at Adam about how he’s trying to work, and my kid and I won’t shut up. He told Adam he needed to get me out of the office. I’m like this is my office, and if you don’t like it, you can leave. Adam agrees and says I’m the owner, and there’s nothing he can do. The man walks back to his desk.
Adam tells me he will handle it. Wishes me good luck with the project and sends my daughter out.Adam fired the man for insubordination because the situation did not get better after I left and made some sexist remarks about women in business.
I get it wasn’t one of my best days, but I’m trying to run a company and take care of my daughter in a stressful time for her. The man was rude, and to be honest, no matter who I was shouldn’t be telling a child to shut up.
ESH. your ex-employee was gross, se*ist, and misogynistic - that one's an easy judgment, especially since he doubled down on his comments after you left.
but... yeah, you suck too. i get that you're dealing with an emergency, you didn't have childcare, the kiddo is anxious and stressed on top of being 4yo and being a ticking emotional bomb on a good day, it's a bad situation all around. but you still inflicted your screaming child's meltdown on your open-plan office.
your employees show up to work in an office, not a timeout corner, and had any of them done as you had here, they would've been told that they can't disrupt the whole office because they didn't have other options.
you took advantage of your status as owner and instead of apologizing when somebody legitimately pointed out your disturbance, you went on a power trip.
i'm sure the ex-employee would've shown his ass eventually in another situation, but you created this problem that he then reacted to. why didn't you just call Adam up and have him bring the stuff out to your car?
or why didn't you take the kid back to the car once she started melting down and he could've brought you the other few things? it would've been less hassle for you on top of keeping your office professional for your employees.
NTA. He handled it badly from start to finish. You don't go stomping up to a stranger to tell them to 'shut their kid up'. If you know them then you can politely ask them to move or just let them know the noise is distracting.
If you don't know them, then you should quietly (and privately) speak to a higher up because - as OP's post demonstrates - you never know who you're talking to or about! He'd already Fd up even before he doubled down on it.
NTA. His conduct after he found out you were one of the owners is what got him fired. I think Adam realized he was a walking sexual harassment/hostile work environment claim waiting to happen.
A normal person would have immediately apologized when they found out you were the boss, if it got that far. Most people would have come in and asked if there was anything they could do to help you. This guy didn't do any of it. He continued to dig himself a deeper hole instead.