A CEO who casually remarked that his ‘door was always open, if you want a chat,’ at the end of a company briefing was left needing treatment for shock and trauma after one of his employees actually took him up on the offer.
Gideon St. John Michaels – CEO at Hadley and Kemp Investments – could be heard shrieking – “Jesus, we were in the same room. He could have touched me. Or anything,” as he was led away from his office by paramedics after the incident.
Employee Simon Williams was left bemused by the encounter.
“We’d had this company briefing, and he said we were all part of the same team, and if we pulled together we’d come through these rocky times,” said Mr Williams.
“I thought that was really good, and he seemed like a nice bloke, so when Mrs Rankperkash said she wasn’t allowed to order any more staplers for the stationary cupboard, I thought I’d pop in and see him, like he said I could.
“His secretary was on the phone, and started gesturing at me to go away, you know, giving me the finger and that, but then I noticed Mr St. John Michaels’ door was open, you know – like he promised it always would be in the briefing – so I just assumed his secretary just hadn’t been told about the whole ‘door open’ thing.”
It was at this point that the encounter deteriorated.
“I walked in and said ‘Hi Mr St. John Michaels’ – I wasn’t sure if he preferred to be called Gideon or not – and he just went white and made this weird guttural sound.
“Then he hid behind the sofa, and threw stuff at me until the police turned up,” continued Mr Williams.
“I don’t know. It’s almost like when he said his door was always open for a chat, he didn’t really mean it, and it was actually just a throwaway comment to make him seem nice and approachable in front of all of his employees.”
Mr St. John Michaels is expected to make a full recovery, provided he doesn’t have to deal with any employees again.