Our office was in the middle of a crisis. Without our knowledge, our Slack channel was hijacked by Jake Roberts. We all believed Jake worked for our company until just two days ago. Of course, we work for a relatively small but still corporate-run company. We were swamped planning an International Mens Day celebration, making lists of International Mens Day gift ideas with quotes, and focusing on creating both in-office and social media events.
Because our attention was focused elsewhere, Jake Roberts was able to infiltrate our channel and direct messages and start spreading rumors about everyone on our staff! Of course, we just realized these stories were rumors, and Jake used his tall tales to initiate some pretty crazy fights.
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Jake got people to talk to him by reaching out and saying his boss asked him to gather some information from them for an upcoming project. He even mentioned discussing International Mens Day giveaways with those involved in the planning process. None of us had any reason to believe that Jake wasn’t real, and Melissa from accounting even gave him the password to a project she was involved in. Luckily, “Jake” never used it.
Anyway, as our event for International Men’s Day grew closer, Jake continued to troll our Slack channel. He told Murray in sales that Jenna from accounting told everyone he wears a toupee. He also told Kelly from shipping that our CEO was planning on firing her. It wasn’t long before our office was in a rumor-fueled frenzy.
People were angry with each other because of the gossip but not specifying why. To make matters worse, Murray and Jenna were on the planning committee for our International Men’s Day event, and since he refused to work with her and she couldn’t get him to talk to her to tell her why, nothing was getting done.
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Because Murray was so angry with Jenna for telling people he wore a toupee (which he did), we had to plan our International Mens Day corporate gifts virtually. We sent gifts to everyone in the company from SwagMagic and curated snack boxes from SnackMagic.
Our company is substantial. So Jake Roberts could pretend he worked with us, and nobody would notice, at least not immediately. Once he found out we were ordering from SwagMagic, he advised Maria, the executive assistant of the CEO, that his boss wanted three boxes of branded swag sent to a specific address.
This caught Maria’s attention.
Maria advised Jake Roberts that she would send three custom gift boxes of International Mens Day filled with personalized swag. This is where Jake became combative, arguing with Maria that she didn’t need that information.
Jake told her it was not like these were expensive computer science gifts for him. It was just a box of sweatshirts and mouse pads. What was the big deal? This comment made Maria even more suspicious, and she made an appointment to speak with her boss.
Our entire team wore our customized swag proudly and celebrated the cultures of those who worked alongside us daily. We never did find out who Jake Roberts was or where he came from. By the time Maria showed our CEO, his account was gone completely.
Some of us still think it’s someone internal, but we’ll never know. At least he didn’t ruin our day of festivities. We all worked together to pinpoint the source of the rumors. Teamwork at its finest!
Also read: International women day