Jan 18, 2011
Prague – A Czech woman was sacked from her government job for refusing to pull a rope and build a tower as part of a team-building exercise with her colleagues, a local newspaper reported Tuesday.
Venuse Kindlova, a senior official in the north-western town of Usti nad Labem, was dismissed in 2008 after getting reprimanded by her boss for not cooperating during a weekend team-building effort, the daily Mlada Front Dnes reported.
The activity included pulling a rope and building a tower out of plastic cups.
‘At my age it’s humiliating,’ she said. ‘We agreed that I didn’t have to do it.’
Kindlova sued her boss not only over her dismissal, but also for bullying her and for failing to pay her bonus.
A judge issued a preliminary ruling saying that although her boss was inappropriately demanding, payment of the bonus was at his discretion.
‘Personal bonuses go to employees for above-standard performance, including their loyalty to their superiors,’ the judge said. ‘She should have either left or sought another post.’
A court is to decide on the appropriateness of Kindlova’s dismissal in March.
The former official was well-respected by her colleagues, Mlada Fronta Dnes reported, and had won a presidential commendation for directing assistance during floods in 2002.