Dear Rebecca,

During busy season, it’s customary that everyone comes in on Saturdays. Maybe it’s because our firm is very young (average age among associates is 25) and male-dominated, but I’ve noticed that Saturdays are very social - the guys talk about what they did Friday night, are sometimes hungover, and - during March - talked nonstop about NCAA basketball. We even had a big screen TV on in the conference room.

I really like all the people I work with, but I’m not a guy, and - more importantly - I really want to use Saturdays to get some work done. What should I do? Do I tell my teammates to shut up and leave me alone? I’m afraid if I do that, I’ll be ostracized.

Not one of the guys (Massachusetts)

Dear Not One,

I feel your pain! I have worked in male-dominated offices, and this stuff is common. The cool thing is that - because you’re all there on Saturdays - you get to be a part of it! (Ladies, the “Boys Club” still exists, and if we want to break into it, we have to occasionally put ourselves where the boys are.)

Anytime we can socialize with people from work - male or female - we should embrace it. Those times help us build deeper relationships...and even trust that can payoff personally and professionally down the road.

I’m not saying that you should abandon your goal of getting some work done on Saturdays. I’m simply suggesting that you try to embrace some of the social components...and maybe even join in! Next year, fill out your bracket, bring in a large bottle of Advil (to share) and keep it light-hearted.

The most important thing is NOT to judge the guys, or yourself. You can have fun AND get some work done.