Toldedo, Ohio – In the final minutes of a 2-hour brainstorming meeting, Marketing Director Jenn Cavenaugh fears she might have blurted out, “That’s just my perspective,” a little too aggressively.
“We had been talking about the same idea for the better part of an hour,” Jenn says. “Finally I said ‘the data doesn’t support this direction, that’s just my perspective.’ I immediately regretted it.”
Upon hearing this, Senior Vice President Alan Graham, who was standing at the white board drawing a Venn diagram, immediately turned to face her. Project Managers Allison and John looked up from their laptops, and even Senior Software Engineer Robin Crowder, who had been napping on a bean bag, seemed startled.
“Looking back,” she says, “I probably should have been more delicate with my opinion.”
The meeting ended when Alan asked to schedule a follow-up meeting the next day. As everyone shuffled out of the room, Jenn continued to sit at the conference room table, pretending to check email but really just trying to avoid eye contact with the other attendees.
At press time, Jenn hoped the storm would blow over but was still concerned about losing her job, or worse, not being invited to the follow-up meeting.
When asked for comment, Robin Crowder said she didn’t think it was a big deal. However, another meeting attendee who wished to remain anonymous (John) said he was floored by the comment and felt Jenn was getting testy. “How dare she share her opinion in such a harsh way. When you share your opinion you need to do it calmly and rationally and not all crazy like that. I mean seriously, I just have no idea what she was thinking.”
Jenn planned to take it easy in the follow-up meeting, assuming she gets the meeting invite.
Jenn eventually went back to her desk, where she sat refreshing her Google calendar over and over again until leaving at 5:15pm.