Everyone makes mistakes, but few things are more panic-inducing than making a mistake at work. Because work mistakes can cost you your livelihood—and, depending on what you do for work, other people could suffer the consequences as well. The best case scenario for a work mistake is that the aftermath gets quickly resolved or swept under the rug before anyone finds out about it. Do you have to live the rest of your life plagued by the guilt? Yes. But at least your boss isn't mad at you!
Someone asked Reddit: "What is the biggest 'oh f*ck, I'm dead' thing you've done at work, but nobody ever found out?"
1.) From LawnyJ:
I used to work for a big box pet store taking care of the animals that lived in the store. There was a rotation of the animals getting their accessories changed out and cleaned (i.e. water bottles, food bowls, plastic huts) every day. So each day the morning person cleaned that day's habitats and the closer did the "dishes" in the sink and set them to dry and be put back in rotation for use.
It was sometimes difficult to complete any of these tasks while also dealing with customers. The sink we did dishes in was very deep and company policy stated that the dishes had to soak in a cleaning solution for a certain amount of time so it took a long time to fill up the sink with the solution to soak everything.
It was common to turn the water on to fill up the sink and go see if anyone needed help in the store while you waited.
Not long after I started working there I was performing this task and got pulled into a long conversation with a customer. Normally I'd duck in the back and turn off the faucet if I thought the conversation would take a while, but this night I just completely forgot the sink was on. Cue like 20 minutes later walking in the back to ankle deep water. The sink had overflowed and was filling the back space. The door had a rubber stopper at the bottom keeping it from going into the store
I took a squeegee thing and started herding the water into a drain on the floor on the back side of the fish wall but it took a long time. I was so frantic and still had to pay attention to customers out on the floor. Luckily no one else ever went into the back unless you worked in that department and I was working alone. So I managed to herd most of the water into the fish drain and the rest dried over night before the opener came in. No one ever knew I flooded the back space.
Few months later I realized flooding was a common occurrence and my manager flooded it at least once a year.