“My boss sent me a saucy email that was meant for his wife!”: The cringiest email disasters revealed

Employment & Skills | Reports
Businesswoman Checking E-mail Online on Laptop

Sending emails is a large part of many workers’ jobs and many industries simply wouldn’t cope without them. Sometimes, however, an email can accidentally end up in the wrong hands or be sent to the wrong person, resulting in embarrassing consequences.

To find out the UK’s funniest email mishaps, online tech retailer Ebuyer, has collected data revealing the most humorous emails that have been received in the workplace.

The survey of 2,000  UK workers uncovered email disasters, from disastrous spelling errors and messages accidentally ‘sent to all’ rather than to just the intended recipient.

The most common email disaster is sending work emails to the wrong person. Some of the most shocking recipient errors include:

  • “My boss sent me a saucy email that was meant for his wife!”
  • “I sent an email to the completely wrong person regarding a joke that was inappropriate for work.”
  • “I sent my CV for a new job to my current boss.”
  • “There was a private email between two office workers that were secretly seeing each other and was a bit too personal, it was mistakenly sent to everyone.”
  • “I sent an email complaining about a colleague’s smell to the man I was complaining about.”

The survey also revealed that many UK workers gossip in group emails, only then to accidentally send to the person being discussed. The five most cringe-worthy examples received are:

  • “I sent an email to my friend but my boss was accidentally copied in and she found out the “sick” day I had was actually a boozy day out, she was not happy.”
  • “I sent a not safe for work WhatsApp message to the whole email group by mistake.”
  • “A colleague was accidentally copied into an email about their own ‘surprise’ birthday gift.”
  • “An email was sent to all users complaining about a member of staff when it should have only been sent to one person. It was quite funny.”
  • “I went to reply to an email, criticising one of the managers, except I pressed reply all and sent it to 32 people, it was only when someone messaged me that I realised the mistake… The manager never said anything and I just pretended it didn’t happen.”

Unsurprisingly, some of those responding to the survey were given disciplinary action over their emailing mishaps. One respondent said: “I sent a naughty email to all my contacts rather than my partner! I almost got sacked. My boss did see the funny side thankfully.”

A second worker also saw a coworker get into trouble for their email mistake: “Someone sent a rude joke out and accidentally sent it to a distribution list rather to the sole intended colleague meaning many people received it. They sent an apology but were also disciplined.”

Spelling errors were also a common email mishap for UK workers, and were the cause of embarrassment for one female from Sheffield: “I wrote ‘ass’ instead of ‘ask’ in an email and when I realised it was too late and embarrassing.”

Elsewhere in Manchester, one female accidentally used the word ‘porn’ instead of ‘pawn’ in her email. In the south, one London worker wrote: “I made a spelling error and sent to governors and parents – instead of ‘bring your wellies’, I accidentally changed the first vowel to an ‘i’ rather than a ‘e’ – leading to a rather embarrassing apology email being sent out straight after.”

More cheeky spelling errors occurred in Edinburgh, Scotland, with one worker “sending a message to Angus Council but spelled it ‘An*s’ Council” and another Edinburgh local admitted: “I once sent an email saying I was too ‘busty’ rather than too ‘busy’.”

David Jones, Product Manager for office supplies at Ebuyer.com, said: “Everyone has, at one point, sent an email to the wrong person, but most of the time the situation is a light-hearted joke among coworkers. Some of these responses are funny, but they are also a reminder that we need to be careful before pressing the ‘send’ button to our colleagues – make sure you double check who the email is going to!”

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