fun. not all the time.

If you have been around me and I am comfortable being around you, at some point or the other, I must have made fun of the situation around and had to have dragged you into the situation I had imagined.

Often, I don’t think about my words hurting someone, but if I feel that my words did end up hurting the other person, I have been quick to apologise and have made a mental note, not to involve the person to keep the conversation upbeat. I had read about standup comedians often trying out their routines with a smaller audience to gauge how the joke fit in before delivering it to the broader audience.

The workplace can be similar. what you think is funny might end up hurting a colleague. You did not mean for your words / actions to be hurting them. You thought the words/actions you did were funny; a few others thought it was funny too, but not the person/people who took offence to your words/actions. When that happens, it is essential to acknowledge that and apologies. Everyone has varied thoughts/feelings about things based on their life experience. I hope that people are forgiving, and if someone did something that offended them, they forgive for the first time. Having said that, not all actions are to be forgiven, though.

Recent changes at Basecamp had me thinking about the above. DHH also wrote about it here. Let it all out. Not everyone at your company will agree with how things were done before. It’s important to acknowledge when this happens. Correct course and move on. I don’t know the whole story of what happened which caused this change at Basecamp. We know the gist of things, as mentioned in the blog post. Not the whole story. As an effect, though, it looks like a lot of people are quitting Basecamp.

I still have conflicting thoughts about what unfolded this week at Basecamp, but I wish everyone the best, including Jason and DHH.

Sunil Shenoy @sunil
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