> In office for first time in awhile
> Run into group of 4 people I don’t recognize in far cubicle corning laughing in hushed voices eating of an impressive spread of food
> See me and immediately look at each other with panicked expressions
> Confused, I put my hands up to indicate I come in peace
> They relax a little and say they thought I was from HR since they didn’t recognize me
> Ask why HR seeing them would be such a big deal
> They say their potluck is not “sanctioned”
> …?

So apparently HR just could resist ruining one of the only good things about coming into the office and one of the coolest things about the company’s culture. At least once a month there would be a giant potluck where everyone would bring some home cooked dish and share it. I can’t tell you how amazing these are in Canada, 50+ plates of authentic food from all over the world.

Unfortunately HR didn’t agree as 1. They didn’t cook so felt bad taking food. 2. Nobody asked them permission to put on these events they just happened organically. 3. Some people were bringing in food that they felt was culturally inappropriate (ie. caucasian guy bringing in homemade sushi).

HR recently banned all “unsanctioned” potlucks and all future potlucks needed to be approved through them with the following stipulations. 1. You could participate without bringing something by donating to HR $10 2. If you brought something you still had to give HR $10. 3. Things you brought in had to be approved by HR

Naturally the first and only potluck under these rules only 4 people brought something in as many couldn’t get their dishes approved because HR didn’t like what they were planning to bring (started out as being because culture and turned into HR just being picky), most just brought $10 so there wasn’t enough food to go around and so after HR took a giant group photo to post on the company’s social media accounts to show off how good the company’s culture is most everyone had to go out for lunch. HR sent out an email later that day exclaiming what a huge success for charity and the company brand the potluck was and they can’t wait for the next one. (I have the HR communications email marked as spam so I never saw the email). Nobody ever organized a sanctioned potluck after that.

However people still missed cooking and sharing their favourite recipes with one another so potlucks still occur but they are now very small, secret, invite-only, hush-hush affairs.

…What in the ever loving fuck

  • 18
    I am of Irish descent. My older brother is also. He was once considered to be one of the best sushi chefs in Utah by Japanese businessmen. Fuck HR and their fucking bullshit. What a bunch of garbage people.

    Dude, every fucking time you post your place of work gets at least 2x (in this case 10x) worse.
  • 12
    Wow. How would HR sanction an "unauthorized" potluck? I assume they can't just randomly fire people for gathering and sharing food.
  • 19

    hr: why are you having a potluck?

    employees: it is not a potluck.

    hr: but you are sharing food and...

    employees: we would have gotten permission if it was a potluck.

    Just deny reality and let them deal with this.
  • 12
    @Lasoloz Progressive discipline for those caught violating company policy. Verbal —> Write up —> Suspension —> Termination.

    Of course employees could push back like they somewhat successfully did about the halloween costume competition (will post later) but many left working here now are 1st and 2nd generation immigrants and don’t have a whole lot of resources to fall back on if they lose their job and those that have publicly spoken out against HR in the past tend to be terminated shortly afterwards. (Lots of lost wrongful dismissal cases though from what I’ve heard so at least you get a bit of a payday out of it).
  • 2
    @boombodies What the hell. I didn't expect it that HR just could make company-wide policies.
  • 10
    @Lasoloz They won’t come after you for the act of sharing food. They’ll take the angle that you were stealing company resources and participating in time-theft for non-work related activities (ie. company email/meeting requests/coordinating on teams chat event logistics). It’s HR so a large part of their job is finding and documenting a defensible reason to fire you if need be. They’ll come up with the most plausible thing they can muster.
  • 4
  • 4
    @Lasoloz Yeah I don’t know how common it is this is the first massive company I’ve worked for. I overheard them talking about social media communication policy in a meeting room the other day and what they can do about stopping people from saying bad things about the company online because apparently it’s becoming a huge issue. Not sure how often that’s normally in HR’s scope?
  • 4
    @Demolishun it's just a lunch with 4 people 😂
  • 12
    @boombodies Team up with all except HR. Try to get the people above HR in your team too if possible. And then just outright ignore HR openly as a team of basically the full company. They then can decide to fire you all and basically shut down the company over their childish "policies" - or accept defeat. With some luck, they will have to search for a new job when higher ups see that they have too much free time for such nonsense.
  • 5
    What I wanted to say was that "people have gone on strike for less" but I tried to search for ridiculous reasons for actual strikes in history and found nothing. This would definitely make the list because the HR's stance is so ridiculous.

    I'm wondering if the search engine fails to provide the answer I'm looking for because it tries to avoid results that are against unionization (if so, it failed), if no one has bothered to write such a list, or if there has never actually been a strike that stemmed from a single ridiculous reason. I expected that some group somewhere would have gone on strike for some funny reason.

    Can't you organise the potluck outside the premises for your lunch break?
  • 3
    @electrineer I don’t really have the clout or influence to organize labour in any way. Especially since most people who would be interested in that kind of play have either been fired or left. Truth be told I didn’t recognize a single face other than senior management and HR when coming back to the office after 2 years away. The entire place has turned over by the looks of it.
  • 2
    @boombodies turned over, or just turned? It has a smell, and I can smell it from here.
  • 2
    Another option is to have a picnic in the park during the spring/summer/fall. Do not invite anyone from HR.
  • 3
    Bizarrely, HR is one of the fields of work that would be substantially improved by AI. A thinking system capable of learning sociology but which isn't beholden to the rules of a society would do much better than people who have an interest in certain outcomes.
  • 2
    The other such field is upper management because AI can't have property so they would just fulfill the board's demands without rampant embezzlement that just makes capitalism even worse for everyone.
  • 2
    Is this "awesome" company CGI by any chance?
  • 2
    "what in the ever-loving fuck"

    power-tripping fascists, that's what most of all HR are.
  • 0
    @PepeTheFrog No but that’s one to avoid I gather?
  • 2
    I’ve never heard of a potluck (I’m in the UK) it sounds amazing.
  • 4
    @TrevorTheRat They are insanely good as long as everyone practices safe cooking. Otherwise it’s a recipe for hershy squirts. Still worth it though.
  • 2
    I'm not gonna lie. Whoever works HR sounds like they are *trying* to get punched in the head.
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