Before You Submit Your Question…….

Ask the Workplace Doctors is a FREE resource to help you find solutions to workplace communication problems. If you are thinking about submitting a question, the following information may be useful to you:

1. You may find the answer to your question in our archive of over 3,000 questions and responses. Look for the general category, on the right, then scan the Q & A’s.

2. Your name and email will not appear in our posted answer. An immediate response will be sent you via your email as soon as possible–usually within two days. If you scan our recent posted Q&A and Archives, you will see that all submitted questions are anonymous.

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Subject of Redundancy Results in Feeling Incredibly Unsure

A question to Ask the Workplace Doctors about redundancy in the  UK:

A couple of months ago, I got a new job, in a jump-before-being-pushed situation during a redundancy process. I was also one of the Union Reps negotiating the redundancy (this is the UK), which continued briefly while I was in my new job.

There were red flags at the start — I was concerned that the person my new employer saw wasn’t sure who I am (i.e. she kept calling me, ‘creative’ in a way that seemed a euphemism for not being solid or sensible.)

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Is Being an Only English Speaking Office Manager in a Farsi-Speakig Start-Up Discrimination?

A question to Ask the Workplace Doctors about being an only English speaking Office Manager/Controller:

I am the Office Manager/Controller/a little bit of everything position in a small startup company in California. There are 4 individuals in the office, The CEO/Founder, Production Manager, Sales Manager and myself. There are also about 10-15 outside sales reps., but the issue I am having doesn’t concern them at all. In the office, each of us has about the same level of responsibility, (other then CEO obviously) and work on 75% of the projects together. However, I am the only female, and the only, white, American born, English-only speaking individual out of us 4. The CEO/Founder, and my two co-workers, are Persian and speak Farsi. They speak Farsi in the office almost all of the time, for business, personal, jokes, lunch, everything. I have asked on MULTIPLE occasions that we speak English for work related things as I do not speak Farsi and am getting left out of conversations.

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I Like My Boss A Lot! What Should I Do?

Question: I really like my boss. He is super nice and funny and when he is around me, he makes me laugh like crazy! He makes me smile 24/7. I really care about him and his feelings.

He recently broke up with his girlfriend after they had a huge fight. I asked him if everything was okay and he seemed really down, so I tried to talk to him and he seemed a little bit better. I wanted him to be happy, so I asked him what he wanted most and he answered ”A K-Bar”. It’s a type of knife. So, one day I looked on Amazon and bought it for him. When I went to work and gave him the gift he was the happiest Man Alive! I had never seen so much joy and happiness on his face!!

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Can I Be Fired For Being Accused of Raising My Voice to My Manager?

A question to Ask the Workplace Doctors about being accused
of speaking to a manager with a raised voice. 

Question: I recently came through an 18 month investigation by my hospital into my professionalism at work because I raised concerns on safety. I managed to come through with them apologizing for certain things and not following up on a verbal warning. I have now been accused of raising my voice to my line manager which is incorrect as I did not, but I did challenge being unsupported in the workplace as she was meant to allocate staff to ensure I was not left on my own with 11 cardiac patients with no help.

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New Manager Is Not as Helpful As Old

A question to Ask the Workplace Doctors about getting help from new manager:

I work at an upper scale restaurant as a host. My responsibilities include things such as, greeting guests, and walking them over to a table that best fits their needs and requests, I also check coats for guests and am in charge of taking to-go orders and ringing them in and giving it to the guests, and many other things. As I do have quite a few tasks to be fulfilled throughout my shift, it can get rather busy and stressful. Especially on a Saturday night whenever we got busy like that, our old general manager would come over and check on us very periodically to make sure I and the other host didn’t need any help. And if we were very busy, he would stay with us during the rush to make sure everything was flowing smoothly.

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Future Surgery But Asked to Come to Work

A question to Ask the Workplace Doctors about future surgery and being asked to come to work:

I have rotator cuff surgery coming up next week. I was asked to come to work anyway even though my doctor wrote me out as to not further irritate my shoulder. I was asked to come in and train a new person. I am afraid something will happen while on the manager’s watch knowing I have been written out. Could the manager get in trouble? Could I and be refused medical services?

Signed–Could I

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Boss Is Reaping The Benefits Of My Hard Work!

A question to Ask the Workplace Doctors about a boss taking a  cut of tips:

My line of work focuses on getting paid through tips. My boss takes a percentage of tips from each worker which is unfair because we are independent contractors and our boss does not help us in any part of our work. Our boss tells us that the reasoning behind getting a percentage of everyone’s tips is because he assigns us work. This seems to be troubling because I deserve to be awarded all of my tips instead of my boss taking credit and awarding himself my rightful tip money.

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Is it Illegal For A Coworker to Discover And Disclose My Salary?

A question to Ask the Workplace Doctors about an employee disclosing salaries of coworkers. 

Question: A coworker of mine logged onto our Office Manager’s computer and logged on (she has access to the code) to our program that manages employee’s salaries. She then proceeded to tell other employees my salary. Is this illegal? My boss does know and says there will be consequences, yet we have not seen them yet.

Response: There are no laws about revealing salaries, but in most companies it is a rule violation that would—and should—merit serious sanctions, up to dismissal. You don’t indicate the size of your organization, but generally, the larger the company, the more severe such a violation is considered to be.

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How Can I Reduce the Stress of School, Work and Life in General?

A question to Ask the Workplace Doctors about how to reduce the
time pressure and stress of competing priorities.

Question: Lately I have been feeling super stressed between work and my school and you could even say my lifestyle. I know in my head that school is my main priority, but my mind seems to stress and wonder about my life and also work. I wish I could focus better on school and put all my time into that but it’s hard when I need to work for money, and also have a life of some sort. I work as a babysitter and it may sound easy but I can assure you it is not. I have to drive them to activities and get them from school which is a pretty far drive. They complain a ton and I try my best but I am only 20 years old and need to make sure I have the right amount of energy for my school time. Sometimes I feel as if they don’t understand I have a life outside of their home. And I have many things I try to remember and keep track of also while keeping track of all their homework assignments and after school activities.

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What About Pay Owed To Me, Now That Boss Has Passed Away?

A question to Ask the Workplace Doctors about how to get a final payout from a job.

Question: I am doing construction and assisting a sub-contractor and our boss had a heart attack on the job site and passed away. What do we do? We’re having a hard time getting paid.

Response: We specialize in workplace communication issues, rather than employment law or business continuity. However, we will make some suggestions about your concerns and perhaps it will help you find some other resources. I can imagine how upsetting this is and hope it is settled soon!…..

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