Hoping someone can help. Going out of my mind worrying. Got a meeting invite Friday PM from HR with the following…

“ I am scheduling this time to discuss with you a confidential matter. Your insight is relevant for our review.”

They’re not HR from my country (U.K.) or anyone I’ve dealt with before. One is legal / ethics and the other is an HR business partner. I visited the country (USA) back in July and do work with people there but only over Skype. Help! We did a team night out with drink / dancing which is what my mind is going to if someone made a complaint. How should I approach / what should I do?!!!?

It’s marked as confidential - do not share so I can’t talk to manager about it.

No idea if someone else is target, but I don’t have a huge amount of engagement with the people they’d be looking after. And the timing makes me think it’s connected with the trip (6weeks after it happened).

Ok so update. Called into meeting with HR. It’s a combination of expenses (people going overboard) and inappropriate dancing / touching. Frankly I couldn’t remember most of what was referenced. Some of it was at me. Some of it not. I walked out in a daze. But have spent past 2 days writing down what I remembered as bits came to me.

Thing is now I remember stuff should I go back and tell them the truth / whole truth etc. or do I wait for outcome. The way Ive been thinking feels like I’ll be subject to a disciplinary. I’m really worried about a gross misconduct charge.

  • What has your manager said?
    – AakashM
    Sep 5, 2022 at 14:18
  • 2
    Is it possible someone else is the target of the investigation - so you're just a potential witness?
    – morsor
    Sep 5, 2022 at 14:24
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    Note that 6 weeks is a VERY long time, even for a slow HR department. If it is indeed something about the trip, I suspect that you should probably simply choose to not recall things. Sep 5, 2022 at 14:52

3 Answers 3


How should I approach / what should I do?!!!?

Calm down and relax. This could be all sort of things and you may have done nothing wrong at all.

If you want to prep, go through your calendar and identify all interactions you had with this business partner. Create a little diary. If there are incidents that may have triggered that, write as much detail down as you can remember including the after-work party.

During the meeting:

  1. Listen carefully to the questions. Play them back in your head. Give yourself time to think. Do NOT shoot from the hip.
  2. Keep your answers as short as possible and to the point. Stick with clear "facts" and don't interpret or assume anything. Do not answer any more than you have to and don't volunteer any information (at least not until you fully understand what's happening).
  3. Keep your emotions in check. Don't get defensive or aggressive.
  4. If in doubt say so "I don't recall", "I'm not sure", etc are all good acceptable answers
  • I think you may have misunderstood what "business partner" means here. Note that "HR business partner" just means a HR person. Sep 5, 2022 at 14:48

what should I do?

You should stop worrying until you know what the issue is.

Meet with them. Be honest and open. Make sure you leave the meeting with an understanding regarding what is going on.

  • 3
    Generally I'm a big fan of "honest & open" but with HR and Legal in the room and no idea what this is about, I'd be as non-open as possible at least until I've got the lay of the land.
    – Hilmar
    Sep 5, 2022 at 13:10
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    @Hilmar What a great way to cast suspicion on yourself. Sep 5, 2022 at 13:21
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    @DJClayworth It's better for them to be vaguely suspicious of you, rather than have concrete evidence that you've done something they can fire you over. So I would agree with Hilmar. Don't be honest and open. Be measured and guarded. These people have some sort of objective, it's best not to go blundering into the middle of something. Sep 5, 2022 at 14:46
  • @DJClayworth: You already are under suspicion and very little you can say can help,. Relevant, insightful, and funny: youtube.com/watch?v=d-7o9xYp7eE
    – Hilmar
    Sep 5, 2022 at 15:30
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    @JoeStrazzere And there is no evidence that he isn't. It's all supposition right now, where the only known fact is that HR and legal want to formally talk to the OP.
    – Peter M
    Sep 5, 2022 at 18:36

You should contact the person who arranged the meeting. You need to know what you are facing. You may be a witness, you might be a suspect.

You need to know the subject, you have guessed that it is related to an event during your trip. But you don't know that.

I would never want to walk into a meeting with legal and HR without understanding the issue. They work for the corporation, they don't work for you.

  • 1
    That's worth a try but unlikely to work. They won't tell you.
    – Hilmar
    Sep 5, 2022 at 18:26

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