It certainly didn’t come from any HR textbooks. But the very direct way a company manager defended a member of his team has left many onlookers cheering.
Like so many disputes in recent years it started with Brexit.
The Viking Beard Company, which is based in both York and Gainsborough, posted a message saying it could no longer export to European countries due to the extra costs now we’ve left the EU.
When a Twitter user replied to say that if the company, which makes beard oil and wax, can’t ‘fill out some paperwork’ then it didn’t deserve their custom. And he posted a gif of Simon Cowell waving ‘bye’ to the firm.
UK business manager Sarah responded that Brexit was putting jobs at risk. She also described the person using a few very strong swear words, landing her a 12-hour ban from Twitter.
In response the Twitter user emailed her boss Simon Hildreth to complain. If the person was expecting sympathy, they got short shrift.
Simon wrote back to say Sarah “has nothing to hide”, criticised the Twitter user’s attempts to get her fired, and suggested they “bring on your bullshit threats of legal action” and “put on your big girl pants and grow up”.
He finished: “We will not stand for a member of staff being threatened. You’re nasty.”
As you can see, this got a lot of love on Twitter, with more than 35K likes and retweets. Here are some of the comments:
I LOVE YOUR BOSS! If more did this, they’d be amazed how much their work force supports them! Respect works both ways, and for the support of those that work for him can I say ‘thanks Simon, great boss, share the easy way of being a top boss!’— Deborah Grace #RefugeesWelcome3.5%💙 (@Deborah12474068) January 6, 2021
Simon the legend! If only all bosses were like that. I guess maybe some depends on the industry you’re in. Whether being “woke” in intrinsic to the business model. Employers should always as a matter of course defend their employees until give cause not to. Good to see it happen— Vicki (@tictoc123) January 7, 2021
Absolutely brilliant!! We need a bit more of this sort of backbone. Stops people from spouting their vile opinion then crying when they’re called out. If “Simon ” is on here point him out. I want to follow that man— Barbara Stanley💙 (@TheNeurosim) January 6, 2021
Although not everyone was entirely supportive.
I’m not sure I quite agree with the homophobic or sexist language, but I’m glad he had your back.— Citizen of Nowhere (@CitznOfNowhere) January 6, 2021
He backs you clearly so 👏 , but it’s Not really a very professional letter in reply is it. Dont stoop to the same level , the content that has been written in reply could and should have been articulated a lot better.— David Gadsby (@davidgadsby9) January 6, 2021