We had a training session for a week for which employees from other buildings of my company also attended, along with some customers too. It was for 5 days and I had one person from my team, so I sort of had company. If that happens, I usually avoid talking or interacting with anyone else except may be when they start the conversation. During the last day of the training, when I was almost ready to run out of that place (the training happened in a god forsaken part of the city, which I don’t like), suddenly the woman who was sitting next to me that day turned and smiled and told me that my copper bangle which I wear in my right hand looks very nice. Out of the blue, hearing a comment like that in a technical training session which is about to end in another hour or so, I wasn’t sure how to respond. So I did the usual response thing, ‘Thank you’ and smiled back. That got her talking.
She was telling me how she joined the company a few months back and how she is liking it and asked me how long have I been and was surprised by the answer and all that stuff. After a few more questions from her related to the company, the teams , the overall performance, the usual monetary benefits that employee enjoys etc etc she asked me from which building I came from and when I told her my building name, this is how the rest of the conversation went.She: Oh my god I am from the same building, but I haven’t seen you there even once .
Me: Really ? (my hint at sarcasm with a surprised expression got lost on her :-< ) May be because I am hardly in office. Mostly I work from home and even if I come I wont be seen out of my cubicle much.She: Is it…They allow you to work from home just like that.
Me: Well, I was injured and couldn’t walk so they don’t have a choice now , do they ?She: I understand. Which floor are you located ? I could look you up sometime
When I told her my floor she gasped.She: Oh my God I work on the same floor. What is your location?
I was secretly hoping that she isn’t in the same wing as mine…That would have seemed so bad. Thankfully we are seated in different wings. Oh, the sigh!
And while departing she said that she just loved my bracelet (I seriously didn’t understand…its just a copper bracelet…)
At least I was happy that I am not the only one who doesn’t know who sits next to me or everyone else in the floor (some people tend to know each and every person and their personal history too), unless and otherwise it is my team member with whom I have to interact if we share a project. Even if I sit close to someone or have to talk to them occasionally I can still be far out of reach personally.
And I never would have started a conversation even if I wanted to with some one by complimenting their copper bracelet 🙂