Dear Miss Lonelyhearts: I was eating dinner with a couple of people from work on a night when we were all going to work overtime. I overheard my project head talking on his cellphone to someone when I went to the washroom. He was leaking information about what we were doing.
I spoke privately with the head of our work group who did nothing. Now I wonder if the two of them are in cahoots. I would go higher, but I just got a job offer elsewhere and I am going to take it. What should I say in the exit interview when they ask why I am going? -- Not Sure of Consequences, Winnipeg
Dear Not Sure: The exit interview would be the time to say: "I overheard this going on. I reported it to my superior and nothing happened. I got a new job offer and it was preferable to working in a group where people are disloyal."
If the boss is in on the dishonest dealings, he will be glad to see you go elsewhere. If he is not, he will be glad he finally knows what's going on in his own company.
Dear Miss Lonelyhearts: The man who calls himself "Just the Caretaker" who has a crush on the principal at his school should not sell himself short. Years ago, at a school where I was working, a new caretaker transferred in. He was a very nice man who treated everyone with respect and kindness. He interacted with all the students in the hallways and went out of his way to especially show interest in the activities of the students in the life skills program. He would say hi to them in the hallway, which is important for kids who may not be greeted by other kids.
His "above and beyond" approach not only extended to the students in life skills, but students who were having a bad day or a hard time focusing in class were always welcome to help the caretaker sweep the floors, empty trash cans or wash windows. He would talk with them, but if they needed guidance, he would direct them to the guidance counsellor.
Of course, some people thought our caretaker should just stick to his own job, but most of us appreciated what he was doing. He genuinely cared for the students and it showed. In the end, he married one of the teachers at the school.
Just the Caretaker could check with his principal to see if he would be allowed to share his musical and artistic abilities with the students during lunch break with another teacher. Then he will no longer be Just the Caretaker. And who knows? Love may blossom between him and the principal. If not, maybe new friendships will be formed. -- Happy Endings Do Happen, Winnipeg
Dear Happy Endings: Caretakers have to be careful how much interaction they have with students, as there have been some creepy caretakers over the years. In this case, Just the Caretaker is interested in the female principal at the school. If he wants to form a relationship with her, he needs to spend some time presenting a solid idea regarding the music and art skills he has to offer. She may or may not approve. At least it gives him a reason to talk to her and, as you point out, become more interesting to her. There's a small chance this could work out well for everyone.
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