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About minute silences at work

(240 Posts)
onesupplied Mon 19-Jun-17 19:06:26

We had a one minute silence today to recognise the Grenfell tragedy.

We all received an email well in advance about this. Our office manager sets off an alarm at 11am and when the silence is over. We've (sadly) done this a couple of times now in the past month.

There still remain a few colleagues who seem to take no notice. Although not talking they're typing, clicking, scrolling, shuffling papers.

AIBU to think that this is bloody disrespectful and that everyone can afford to take one minute out of their day?

Trb17 Mon 19-Jun-17 19:07:42

Same in our office today and every silence. Makes me rage as it's so disrespectful angry

PurpleDaisies Mon 19-Jun-17 19:08:15

I think it's up to people to decide whether they want to observe a silence or not.

I do but I don't think it should be compulsory. At least they're being quiet.

leccybill Mon 19-Jun-17 19:09:55

Gosh- is no-one calling them out on it? I'd have to say something.

By contrast, we've done them in school. High school, just before breaktime, 1600 teenagers- absolutely impeccably observed. Heads bowed, absolute silence.

Wateroffaduck Mon 19-Jun-17 19:10:04

Yes you are being unreasonable. If the phone rings I have to answer it. My manager sits next to me and would know if I didn't answer, I would be in deep shit. So you can tut and stare at me talking all you like but I have no choice, my role is phone based. I can't answer and say "sorry there is a minutes silence" I have to deal with the phone call.

DumbledoresApprentice Mon 19-Jun-17 19:11:22

That really shocks me. I work in a school and any member of staff who that did that would be in big trouble.
We're expected to set an example. You stop what you're doing for a minute's silence and I've never known anyone not observe one at work.

DumbledoresApprentice Mon 19-Jun-17 19:14:04

Leccybill- our school was the same. I was in the hall with a load of kids. Every one stood up and observed it in total silence.

HaudYerWheeshtBawbag Mon 19-Jun-17 19:14:04

I dont understand a minute silence, I understand its about respect, however you can give respect in many ways. I always do them, but just cant get my head around them.

AnUtterIdiot Mon 19-Jun-17 19:14:20

I arrived for an early scan at the hospital (10 weeks, thought was losing baby) and walked straight through a lobby full of people mid-silence without even noticing. Admittedly I was in a bit of a state but I was mortified afterwards. The only thing I say in my defence is that there was no sign up on the front doors. So I guess people might just be engrossed? Are announcements made first where you work?

onesupplied Mon 19-Jun-17 19:15:18

Wateroffaduck none of our roles are phonecall based. It's not that sort of business.

Yes I understand if they just want to be quiet instead of taking part. But they're not being quiet. Mouse scrolling, clicking and typing is noisy in a deadly silent office!

RedSkySuperStar Mon 19-Jun-17 19:15:26

Unless you're literally saving a life I don't see how anyone cannot take one minute out of their day to observe

onesupplied Mon 19-Jun-17 19:16:22

And yes explained in first message, there is a bell rung to signify start and end plus an email at the start of the day.

Purplepotatoe Mon 19-Jun-17 19:16:46

I think it's up to people to decide whether they want to observe a silence or not.

^ this

I think people like to, and should be able to, decide in their own way how to pay their respects. As long as they were being quiet if others were taking part.

heateallthebuns Mon 19-Jun-17 19:17:49

It's hard to know. I could be in the middle of something concentrating and not notice. But you think they'd notice with a bell.

shrunkenhead Mon 19-Jun-17 19:18:27

I don't understand how receptionists or hotel staff manage. What do you do if the phone rings? Or a customer wants to check in/ out?

Ditsy1980 Mon 19-Jun-17 19:19:22

We did the same today. A colleague further up the office was asking another colleague a question, first colleague said "I can't answer you, it's the minutes silence", another question was asked and again "I can't answer, it's a minutes silence". FFS! You're ruining the silence by saying you can't answer!
I wouldn't care but we'd all had an email and the fire alarm had gone off to signal the start of it.

DeleteOrDecay Mon 19-Jun-17 19:19:55

YANBU. Although I do think it should be a personal decision. I also feel that anyone who chooses not to observe a minutes silence should also not cause a distraction to others, maybe even leave the vicinity if they are unable to do that.

Pengggwn Mon 19-Jun-17 19:21:35

Schools are different. Students are expected to follow instructions and teachers have a professional duty to model the behaviour they want to see. Offices aren't like schools. If people bring the political into the workplace (and it is political, in the broadest sense, to observe a silence) they can't expect colleagues to necessarily participate. I can't personally see why anyone would object, but it can't be an obligation.

PurpleDaisies Mon 19-Jun-17 19:23:24

I think it loses its meaning if it becomes compulsory.

pickledonionspaceraider Mon 19-Jun-17 19:28:29

I thought we lived in a free country, being frowned upon for not grieving in the exact prescribed way with a bunch of tosspots that you work with, is soul destroying

cushioncovers Mon 19-Jun-17 19:29:40

I don't understand this minute silence thing. I don't think it changes anything. We had to do it at work today.

cushioncovers Mon 19-Jun-17 19:31:02

I don't understand how receptionists or hotel staff manage. What do you do if the phone rings? Or a customer wants to check in/ out?

They take the phone off the hook.

IntoTheBeyond Mon 19-Jun-17 19:33:28

I think it's up to people to decide whether they want to observe a silence or not.

This. Just like it's up to people whether they wear a poppy or not.

And I say that as a military wife who always, without fail, wears a poppy and equally observes the silence where there have been events that have resulted in mass loss of life.

If it's forced, it's meaningless.

DistortedPerceptions Mon 19-Jun-17 19:33:49

AIBU to think that this is bloody disrespectful and that everyone can afford to take one minute out of their day?

Well no not everyone can. I work in an operating theatre and was dealing with a particularly risky anaesthetic at 11am. Some of us have to be fully focused on our work.

NormaSmuff Mon 19-Jun-17 19:34:52

I failed at work the other week the other week because I was interrupted by a couple of colleagues. we are not all glued to our desks - I had to pop out for my own silence
i managed today as i wasnt at work

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