I work at a small company of about 50 employees. Recently, our HR guy mentioned that there are a couple of very negative reviews on Glassdoor. The problem is that they look like I wrote them because they address the very specific problems I have with the company. My colleagues know about them as I have told them about it and they start to distance themselves from me as they think I wrote those reviews. I haven't written those comments but I am afraid that they will backfire at me as I'm currently looking for a new job. How should I deal with this situation? Just telling everyone that I haven't written them or be quiet?

  • 2
    They do already as they are very specific to my current situation and I have the feeling that some colleagues are already distancing them from myself
    – user114574
    Feb 13, 2020 at 20:48
  • 5
    @sf02, it looks like other people may attribute those comments to the OP, implicitly assuming they spawned sockpuppets to post them.
    – Igor G
    Feb 13, 2020 at 21:26
  • 16
    @IgorG If anything has backfired, it was the OP telling the colleagues the negative comments about the company. The Glassdoor review could not have possibly backfired as the OP says they did not write them.
    – sf02
    Feb 13, 2020 at 21:51
  • Are you intending on staying with the current employer for the short-term future, or are you intending to move on very soon? Do you want to help fix these problems in the company or would you be happy to leave the problems ?
    – Criggie
    Feb 15, 2020 at 22:20
  • OP, do you think there are other employees who would have the same problems with the company as you do? (e.g. if the problem is "shortsighted management decisions that result in losing customer confidence" it's likely that people other than you have noticed that). Or are they concerns that are truly specific to yourself and as such you don't think other people would have the same concerns? Feb 16, 2020 at 19:06

5 Answers 5


How should I deal with this situation? Just telling everyone that I haven't written them or be quiet?

When asked, just indicate that you didn't write them.

Maybe you could consider stopping publicly venting about the company problems until after you have left for a new job.

  • 70
    “Maybe you could consider stopping publicly venting about the company problems until after you have left for a new job.” Venting where? To co-workers? I have utterly never been at any job of any level where workers don’t discuss the workplace and their issues with it. Feb 14, 2020 at 15:48
  • 26
    It's normal to vent about your job, but if your comments are getting back to your management then it's a good idea to stop. That seems pretty obvious to me.
    – Stuart F
    Feb 14, 2020 at 16:30
  • 7
    You need to be careful who you vent to. There are people that like to use others' comments as a way to back themselves up or avoid directly implicating themselves as a malcontent when they go complain to management, and may also embellish a little. "Boss, you might possibly want to review the TPS reports policy. In fact, Jake was venting about it on and on the other day. He hates it and the way its managed!"
    – Tenfour04
    Feb 14, 2020 at 16:49
  • 3
    Its normal, and honestly healthy, for colleagues to discuss such things together. But its a lot different in a company of 50 than it is for a company of 5000. In a company of only 50, nothing gets said that everyone in the company doesn't hear some way or another. You have to be more selective of who you are sharing this stuff with.
    – TheBatman
    Feb 14, 2020 at 18:19
  • 9
    @StuartF how do you expect things to improve if you don't complain about them?
    – njzk2
    Feb 15, 2020 at 19:48

they address the very specific problems I have with the company

THEY - multiple comments SPECIFIC - So an inside knowledge is presented I HAVE - and not only you. You need to realize, "If I didn't write them then it had to be someone else" ergo other people in company have same/similar problems.

So if asked and ONLY if asked directly say

I'm not the only one in this company with those problems. I just made a mistake of venting them out in company environment hoping something will change.

Do not deny the existence of the problem. Deny the authorship.

And most important - STOP caring about it. It's obvious that in your company the problem are resolved through ignoring them and shaming people who "bring out the trash".

  • 2
    Szczerzo's answer is very good. But all the replies have missed a very critical part of this scenario: "our HR guy mentioned" these reviews. He was indirectly asking if you wrote these, and in effect, accusing you of it. You should immediately take Szcz's advice and tell the HR guy that you did not write these. If asked, say that you do actually agree with what was said though, if you are looking to resolve any of these issues.
    – Jim
    Feb 14, 2020 at 14:33
  • 2
    This seems likely but the more paranoid possibility would be someone writing purposely trying to implicate the OP for whatever reason.
    – JimmyJames
    Feb 14, 2020 at 15:00
  • 3
    @JimmyJames Just another reason to not care as the company seems VERY toxic. Feb 14, 2020 at 15:13
  • 6
    I wouldn't mention having vented. Just point out that since you didn't write the reviews, you must not be the only person who holds those opinions. Feb 14, 2020 at 17:37
  • @user560822 I added that because it was HR who asked. So that would be me explanation on why they're heard it was me. Feb 16, 2020 at 14:20

As you didn't write them, unless you are asked by someone specifically the last thing you do is start a conversation about it and claim "it wasn't me" that instantly makes everyone think it was you.

Don't talk about them and don't mention them again.

As you are looking for a new job, I assume by 'backfire' you mean, you are worried people will believe it was you now that you are leaving.

Stop worrying what they think, it doesn't matter. Why do you think it does?

  • 2
    So...your argument is essentially that networking and references are not useful?
    – simpleuser
    Feb 14, 2020 at 23:43
  • 1
    no, never said that. - My argument is essentially, slander is illegal. This situation wont result in a bad reference or effect his networking.
    – flexi
    Feb 15, 2020 at 0:28
  • No but it's already uncomfortable and awkward, and feelings exist so that isn't nothing. Feb 15, 2020 at 21:30
  • @flexi if people believe op wrote something and it was really bad, then they may remember op as a complainer/troublemaker if they run across them in the future, references are checked, etc, which may limit networking when finding the next job. In general I agree not to worry about the postings, stop the complaining at work, and only respond if someone suggests op did it, but if it's obvious that everyone thinks op wrote them maliciously, then maybe something needs to be addressed, even if just asking a friendly coworker why everyone thinks so, just to get the conversation started.
    – simpleuser
    Feb 16, 2020 at 0:14
  • @flexi I don't think slander is necessarily an issue here. It could result in a bad reference without that reference actually stating that OP wrote this negative review. It depends in large part on the attitudes of the boss/employer, who could be either very professional or very petty as the case may be.
    – Era
    Feb 16, 2020 at 5:22

My colleagues know about them as I have told them about it and they start to distance themselves from me as they think I wrote those reviews.

Did they bring up the reviews with you or ask you about them? If not, I wouldn't jump to conclusions. You probably shouldn't bring up the reviews unless asked about them as it will only make you look more guilty. If someone does ask you about the reviews, you can certainly respond with something like:

I know I haven't exactly been quiet about my issues with the company but I don't feel the need to disseminate them publicly. I don't know who wrote the reviews but it doesn't seem like an appropriate way to vent frustrations.

If you don't have any direct evidence that the reviews are causing problems between you and your colleagues, it's very well possible that you're imagining a problem that doesn't really exist. You're better off just forgetting about it and moving on. Since you're planning to find a new job soon anyway, whatever perceived friction exists between you and your colleagues won't be a problem for much longer.


Create a glassdoor account that is obviously yours. Write something positive about the company. Dispute the negative reviews. Send appropriate link to your HR guy. Problem solved.

  • 19
    I don't think lying to possible future employees is a good thing. Feb 14, 2020 at 13:09
  • 13
    This is unethical, defeats the purpose of glassdor, and is a nice way of shooting one's own career/foot. Feb 14, 2020 at 17:31
  • 7
    This is also a great way of showing people that you're a pushover/ass-kisser who cares more about keeping his job than just being honest. Feb 15, 2020 at 17:45

You must log in to answer this question.

Not the answer you're looking for? Browse other questions tagged .