A bank worker from Wigan who accused his new female boss of being a “bitch”, “flirt” and a “tease” has lost an employment tribunal fight.
An employment judge was told that the man had been involved in a relationship with a colleague who later became his manager.
But after their affair foundered, he made a number of comments to a teenage trainee, while sharing a train to work and via Facebook.
Not only did he accuse her of having an affair with another colleague but told the 18-year-old: “I’m going to make her life hell.”
In a series of comments and messages he also claimed she “wore short skirts for his benefit”, “flirts with others to make me jealous”, and was a “bitch” and a “tease”, a tribunal heard.
An internal investigation was launched by the bank and the man, who cannot be named for legal reasons, was later sacked for gross misconduct.
As part of the bank’s inquiry, the female manager outlined her relationship with the man, admitting to her bosses it may have been “flirty” but she attempted to draw a line under it when she became his manager.
Dismissing the man’s unfair dismissal claim, Employment Judge Paul Holmes said: “This was a fairly sustained course of conduct, the seriousness of which the claimant appeared not to appreciate.”
The judge said he had taken into account the fact the man had involved a teenage apprentice, who was clearly made uncomfortable by his comments and felt obliged to report them to her bosses.
Judge Holmes added: “There was, during the war, a slogan ‘Careless Talk Costs Lives’. It can, today, costs jobs, as the claimant has found to his cost.”