The building I work in has 3 offices with about 2 people in each, and then shared facilities, toilet, kitchen, hallways etc.

The kitchen is next to my office, the toilet is down 2 hallways. I rarely use the kitchen, I have used the microwave once in the past month, I use the toilet maybe twice a week. I walk through the hallways 2 or 3 times a day to get to a storeroom the other side of the building.

The employees in the other offices all seem to know each other, and talk quite regularly. I do not really talk to any of them.

There are no cleaners here so everybody cleans up after themselves.

Over 6 months ago, a person from another office comes up to my office and tells me somebodies left a mess, and as its only the 2 of us here it must be my mess. Even though I was sure that there were on site builders around earlier in the day, but I didn't say anything. Then he ends with, can you make sure to clean up after yourself. Ever since then I have made sure I clean up all the shared facilities, if I walk through the hallway and there's some litter I will be pick it up and not make a fuss about it, if somethings been spilled in the kitchen and I see it I will clean it up.

Over the passed month or so one of the offices has employed 2 part time staff, and more recently there have been maintenance guys onsite. The maintenance people have been contracted here for a long time so again all the other employees know them quite well.

Around 2 or 3 weeks ago I stopped having to go to the store room so as a result stopped using the hallways, walking passed the kitchen, so wouldn't be cleaning up mess that was left.

Now, I get the owner of the offices coming to me saying there's been mess left in the kitchen/hall/toilet and I've been told that you've left mess behind you before. Like I was getting the blame for the mess.

When the reality is the mess has always been there its just I have cleaned it up. Now there's more people on site making more mess, and I'm just not there to clean up after them.

It feels like as all the other employees know each other, they have spoken to each other about it and nobody wanted to say yeah I don't clean up when I'm supposed to, so they came to the conclusion that it was me.


  • 1
    How did you try to convince the owner of the offices that it weren't you and what was their reaction? What about your colleges? – superM Aug 14 '13 at 11:32
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  • It would be good if you were to end this in a sentence and if you were to sum up the whole thing into a specific question – Kevin Wells Mar 25 '16 at 17:29

You have made several mistakes here. First, you need to start being friendly with your co-workers. You probably got the blame because it is easier to blame people you don't know very well.

Next you didn't speak up the first time you got the blame. And to make matters worse, you started cleaning up after everyone else as if you felt guilty and were causing the mess. Of course, management thinks you cause the mess!

You need to speak up for yourself and tell them that you did not cause the mess. YOu need to stop cleaning up other people's mess and start bring ing it to management's attention when someone else leaves a mess. And you need to start getting chatty with your co-workers so they don't find you an easy target for blame.

  • 3
    you don't need to be friendly with coworkers. You're there to work, not make friends. I wouldn't say that is a "mistake" – squeemish Aug 15 '13 at 12:57
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    You can't effectively work if you are not friendly to your co-workers. You need to read up on office politics if you want to have a successful career. Co-workers hate unfriendly people and will do anything including blaming them for stuff they didn't do to get rid of them. Further by being unfriendly, you have no allies to support you if you are unfairly blamed. – HLGEM Aug 15 '13 at 13:39
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    i've effectively worked for many, many years and have a successful career. I am not friendly with a lot of people, but I am not UN-friendly. There's a difference. Some people prefer to keep their work and personal lives separate. – squeemish Aug 15 '13 at 14:37
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    Being friendly does not mean you have to tell them all about your personal life. – HLGEM Aug 15 '13 at 15:19

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