A Frenchman who claims he was given so little to do at work he suffered “bore out” and depression is taking his case to an employment tribunal.

Frédéric Desnard says his managerial job at Interparfums’ perfume company, which made him redundant 18 months ago, was so tedious he became exhausted and bored out of his mind.

The 44-year-old said his “descent into hell” was similar to a burnout, but “less interesting”.

Desnard is seeking €360,000 (£282,000) in compensation and damages – including holiday pay, which he says, is due.

Desnard complained that between 2010 and 2014 he was mise en placard, or put in the cupboard by his then employer Interparfums, a French phrase that involves giving employees little or no work, or menial tasks.

He told Agence France-Presse he was relegated to doing tasks that had nothing to do with his job and deprived of his original responsibilities. This, he alleges, left him “destroyed” and with “serious depression”.

“I was ashamed of being paid for doing nothing,” he said.

Desnard also claimed the stress and lack of stimulation at work triggered an epileptic fit when he was driving.

He was signed off work for seven months before being made redundant in September 2014 for “prolonged absence” that had “disturbed the smooth working” of the company.

Jean-Philippe Benissan, Interparfums’ lawyer, remarked that Desnard “never said anything about being bored” during his time with the firm.





Rebecca joined the HRreview editorial team in January 2016. After graduating from the University of Sheffield Hallam in 2013 with a BA in English Literature, Rebecca has spent five years working in print and online journalism in Manchester and London. In the past she has been part of the editorial teams at Sleeper and Dezeen and has founded her own arts collective.