How to recover from embarrassing office mistakes

Written by Abigail Henderson


office mistakes

When we spend so much of our lives at work, we’re all bound to make a few embarrassing office mistakes through our career at one point or another. It may be that you’ve made yourself look a bit silly wearing odd shoes one morning, or have walked into the office with loo roll stuck to your shoe. However big or small, daft or serious, these blunders are, there’s nowhere to run when you’re there five out of seven days a week!

When it comes to making these mistakes, we can all feel a little better by knowing we’re not the only ones out there who have done something equally embarrassing.

HOW TO RECOVER FROM EMBARRASSING OFFICE MISTAKES

THE LABEL’S SUPPOSED TO BE ON THE OUTSIDE, OBVIOUSLY

You slept through your alarm, had to get dressed in a rush and finally manage to sit down at your desk just on time. But wait, you’ve got your top on inside out! The best thing to do is to quietly nip to the toilets and change it around before anyone notices. If it’s too late and your colleague is the one who has made you aware, perhaps make a joke out of it before going to change it.

WHAT’S THAT ON YOUR SHOE?

You quickly nipped to the toilet before a meeting and half way through you realise you have toilet paper stuck to your shoe! The best way to get out of this embarrassing situation is to laugh it off. Whether you noticed it yourself or had it pointed out by a client, it’s one of those things that is obviously unintentional and can happen from time to time. Remove the offending tissue, laugh it off and continue with your meeting. Causing a fuss is unprofessional and just isn’t necessary.

SPILL THE BEANS

You’re at a lunch meeting with a client, everything is going well until, suddenly, you spill food all down yourself! Depending on the severity of the spill, apologise and wipe away the food then and there or excuse yourself and nip to the toilets to clean yourself up. Make a note to always keep a packet of wipes in your bag!

PICKING YOURSELF UP

You’re heading back to your desk after your lunch break and as you go to sit down you miss the chair and end up on the floor. This can be really embarrassing, especially if you’re walking into a full office. However, just stand back up, check you’re okay, and get back to work. You may be the subject of a couple of jokes throughout the afternoon, but it’ll soon blow over and something else will become the talk of the office.

LET IT RIP

While bending down to pick up a pen or piece of paper, your trousers split! Find a colleague to confide in, they may have a spare pair in their car or can lend you a cardigan to cover the damage. If these aren’t suitable options, go straight to your boss and explain the situation. Ask them if you can pop home and get changed. Yes, it may be an inconvenience but they’d much rather you be fully-clothed in the office! From now on, we recommend keeping a spare pair of trousers (or a sewing kit) in your car or desk drawer.

FINDING PROOF

You’ve just replied to all your emails for the day, then someone replies highlighting a spelling mistake! While this can look unprofessional, we suggest apologising and remedying the message. If it goes unnoticed, ensure all future communications are proof read, ask a colleague to look over your work before sending if needed.

HIGH FLYERS

You’ve just finished doing a big presentation and when you get back to the office a colleague informs you that your zipper is down. The fact that no one mentioned it during the meeting means they either didn’t notice or didn’t want to embarrass you. Take this as a good sign and don’t mention it, but always double check beforehand!

You currently have JavaScript disabled. This site requires JavaScript to be enabled. Some functions of the site may not be usable or the site may not look correct until you enable JavaScript. You can enable JavaScript by following this tutorial. Once JavaScript is enabled, this message will be removed.