Are you supposed to be the kitchen police, too? It's possible

by on November 1, 2010 · 0 Comment POSTED IN: HR Info Center

Experienced managers know that some employees will spare no efforts in finding small issues to blow into large arguments.

And the office kitchen or break room is often the focus for such petty but potentially explosive disputes.
A recent survey of 432 employees done for the office staffing company OfficeTeam identifies the most annoying break room behaviors:

  • 44% cited people leaving a mess for others to clean up.
  • 19% cited food thieves.
  • 18% cited spoiled food in the fridge.
  • 5% cited people eating smelly food.

Do you, as a manager, really have to get embroiled in kitchen politics? Don’t you have better things to do?

Why get involved
Maybe not. Maintaining harmony among the troops is pretty important. You could ask around and see if people are quietly steamed about conditions in the break room. If so, try setting up a rotation for kitchen cleanup, mandating that food in the fridge bear an owner’s name, and throwing out stuff that’s been in there longer than, say, two weeks.

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