Dear Pharmacy Doctor:
I am a pharmacist at a closed door pharmacy. The best part of this job is the schedule. I work Monday through Friday, 8 am to 5 pm and there is no overtime or weekend hours. My co-workers, including technicians, are probably between 22 to 30 years old. Every month or so, the kids (I call them kids because they are so much younger than me) meet up for drinks after work at the local bar. Sometimes they go bowling or miniature golfing. They always invite me but I never attend. I prefer to go home to my wife and my own kids at home. My friends think that I am making a social faux pas by not going. Everything at work seems fine so why should I go?
Dear Mr. Anti-social
Your friends are right; you should go. You don't have to participate every month but once every two to three months would be sufficient. Be mindful of social politics that surrounds people you work with. Unlike workplace politics, there are no serious ramifications if you ignore social politics. However, your co-workers have formed a friendship. A bond that tightens with each social event. In the end, they will work better together, have less animosity (resulting in fewer disagreements) and the environment becomes more friendly. Why would you not want to be part of that?
The fact that they invite you indicates that you are respected and well-liked. They want you to be part of the festivities. If you don't have two hours to spend with them, then you can drop by and quickly say hello to the group before leaving. A simple greeting means that you care about the group to attend but you have plans at home. Your co-workers will understand and they will acknowledge and appreciate you for making the time.
About the Author and Column
Dear Pharmacy Doctor is a column that provides advice on pharmacist related work/life challenges. Dr. Karine Wong has a 10 year history of working in hospital management and 2 years as a hospital pharmacist and outpatient pharmacist. She recently published a children's book called Don't Sit On Her. You can submit questions to firstname.lastname@example.org.
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