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February 8, 2023

Guy Sues KPMG Over Getting Left Out of the Team Group Chat

Greg Eldridge — an eight-year vet of the House of Klynveld — has sued KPMG Australia over what he alleges was a critical level of cold-shouldering from his people, seeking monetary damages for what he says was a failure of the firm to address an unruly colleague who never liked him. An exceptionally boring Deal Advisory PDF lists his position as director.

According to The Courier Mail, this all started after some lady started sweating him post-promotion for no reason whatsoever:

Mr Eldridge alleges in court documents that he started to clash with new colleague Linda Blore soon after he was promoted to the position of principal director of the “debt advisory services team’’ in April.

Mr Eldridge maintains he was kept “out of the loop’’ in a key communication with clients and subjected to unreasonable interrogation about fees on a deal.

There are three sides to every story of course and in this case Ms. Blore — a partner with 20 years’ experience herself — says it was in fact Mr. Eldridge who was being a white-collar cockblock.

Ms Blore also alleges she had been frozen out by Mr Eldridge, according to the text of multiple emails included in the pleading.

“I’m not putting up with being excluded and undermined internally and externally, and that negatively impacting my ability to deliver into my mandate to the best of my ability,’’ Ms Blore wrote in a July 23 email to Mr Eldridge and copied to their superior, Scott Mesley.

“Not to mention how it makes me feel personally from an inclusion perspective. The ongoing excuses of it just ‘being an accident’ don’t wash. It’s pretty simple.’’

So of course all this led to their boss Mr. Mesley having to take a break from solitaire and mediate whatever communication problem these two chuckleheads seemed to be having. Mr. Eldridge denied being mean to Ms. Blore at all, saying that he gave her “a far greater degree of inclusion than any other partner” and to prove his commitment to communicating with her he told his boss he sent her “hundreds of emails” and also defended her with clients, both of which are pretty much pinnacles of solid, friendly relationships in public accounting.

Unsatisfied by this otherwise impressive inventory of emails, Mr. Mesley told Eldridge to get over it and figure out how to work with Ms. Blore. The situation sadly did not resolve, and Eldridge went on stress leave shortly after the discussion with his superior on July 28. Two doctors vouched that he was experiencing “depression, anxiety and stress in the extremely severe range.” He has not returned to work.

In September, no doubt expecting a glowing review and a nice fat bonus when his year-end review rolled around, Mr. Eldridge received a rating of “effective performance” and no raise. Prior to the beef with Ms. Blore, he seemed to be doing well at the firm and clients liked him.

So now he’s suing, alleging breach of contract. “Mr Mesley took no, or no adequate, steps to address Ms Blore’s conduct,” reads the lawsuit.

He is seeking $100,000 in general damages, $30,000 for past economic loss, some more for future loss of earnings though he didn’t throw out a number, and $2400 for past and future medical expenses. Our American readers will remind themselves this is Australia where you can see TWO whole doctors for less than the price two to three questionably obtained PlayStation 5s.

The first hearing will take place January 25.

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