The case of the sabotaging colleague

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It was a dark and stormy day at Employer Inc.

Walking to the window, Mark gritted his teeth and scratched his face, which felt itchy and hot. He surveyed the crepuscular lights of London, as if the missing file might be hiding among them. Monday’s presentation would be his first in front of CliffBank’s senior management team. He’d only just moved from the firm’s research department into its investment banking division, so making a good impression was critical. He’d been working on the slide deck all week, but he couldn’t finish it without more up-to-date information—which he guessed was in the elusive file on Millhouse, the famous retail clothing chain CliffBank was trying to land as a client.

He needed a lifeline.

“Nicole,” he whispered to himself.

Cue hair-raising scream: aiieeeee!

Need a thrilling read for Halloween? Try the Harvard Business Review, which this month has a totally engrossing case study (when was the last time you saw “crepuscular” in a business journal?) about a new employee who learns his helpful and friendly colleague isn’t what she seems. It’s even interactive. I won’t give away the ending, but let’s just say the commentators, including a former CEO, share surprising opinions on how best to handle the little weasel.

As if the threat of unemployment isn’t scary enough. Do tell: anyone else dealing with a back-stabbing work frienemy?