So, yes, I have a top ten reasons not to cook fish at the office from experience. A few years ago, I made the mistake of warming fish in the office microwave for lunch. It was previously cooked. However, I warmed it in the office microwave, which sent my co-workers running out of the building (the front door is still propped open). In retrospect, I should’ve eaten it cold. After the fish incident, I was not a popular teammate. So, I wrote a top ten apology list and emailed it to everyone. Enough people made comments like, “What were you thinking?” for me to reconsider microwaving fish at work. I guess it smelled like the place where old seals go to die. We have a new company policy, no cooking fish at the office.

My Top Ten Responses About Cooking Fish in the Office

  1. No, it was not river Carp—It was Grouper

  1. Yes, I really did eat something that smelled SO BAD.

  1. No, I did not leave pieces of fish all over the building.

  1. Yes, I will use the microwave upstairs next time and upset all the people upstairs.

  1. No, it was not sushi—you don’t cook sushi—duh. Okay, sometimes it’s cooked.

  1. No, there is nothing in the company handbook about microwaving fish at work … yet.

  1. Yes, my wife lets me cook fish at home. Actually, I cooked it last night and warmed it for 45 seconds today. Obviously, 45 seconds too long.

  1. Yes, I will probably leave the building for lunch for the next few years.

  1. No, I will not pay for air freshener.

  1. No, the smell does not spread disease.


What is your Fish in the Microwave Moment?

That’s my top ten reasons not to cook fish at the office. So, what is your fish in the office microwave moment? What have you done at work that made you a less than popular co-worker? I’d love to hear your stories.

How Can I Help You?

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So, does your business have a management training plan? Because, if not, many organizations, large and small, use my book, The New Manager’s Workbook a crash course in effective management, as the basis for their leadership development program. Check it out.