Anon is a big sillyhead. OH HI ANON, I'M SORRY, LET'S MEET NEXT WEEK TO REHASH YOUR HUMILIATION IN PERSON.
February 6, 2012 10:22 AM Subscribe
Work colleague accidentally cc'd me an email containing personal insults directed at me and now wants to meet to discuss the issue. How do I diplomatically and professionally say that I don't want to meet and would rather just ignore the email and keep working?
posted by anonymous to Human Relations (61 answers total) 9 users marked this as a favorite
Colleague (who is superior in the company, but not MY superior, not in my department, not someone I have interacted with in my previous 3 years with the company until this week, and not someone I'm likely to interact with again) accidentally cc'd me on an email containing personal insults of me. They followed up with an immediate apology for the accidental "reply all," an excuse of being frustrated about other things and taking it out on me, and an invitation to meet sometime next week to talk about it. My supervisor, who was the only other person in the email chain, replied and asked to be included in the meeting, and then emailed me directly to make sure I was ok and to offer to come to the meeting to support me. So yay, supervisor supports me and is reaching out. (But boo, supervisor thinks I'm such a sop that I need a personal email asking if I'm ok.)
The problem? I don't want to have this meeting. Since this is someone I will probably rarely, if ever, interact with in the future, what does it matter if they don't like me? I can see nothing good happening, and only possible downsides - I get upset/cry (which I did when I saw the email and I DEFINITELY don't want to do in front of work people), I say something that makes it worse, I give these people a poor impression of me, things escalate and become a bigger issue than they need to be for one stupid missent email, I get fired, and so on with the catastrophizing, irrational, and anxiety-provoking thoughts. I'm ready to just ignore this whole thing and keep working.
My question? How do I reply to this email? What do I say? What language do I use? For background: I am a young (female, quiet, timid) employee, hired at this company fresh out of college, and this is the first time I've encountered this situation. Everyone else is older, more experienced, and appears confident and put together. I don't want to come across as young, unprofessional, and emotional. I have no models for how to diplomatically shut down an attempt to apologize/escalate. In my ideal world, I would say X in a confident and polished tone that would artfully demonstrate how professional and unaffected I am. So what is X?
Anon on the off chance that someone at work sees this and then has access to my metafilter history. Throwaway email is: firstname.lastname@example.org