Getting Cold Treatment From Former Confidante

Question to Ask the Workplace Doctors about cool treatment: Acting professional every time I see him, I say hello or try to be friendly. However, this has become difficult as he ignores me in very obvious ways or he will give me a look of disgust if I say hello when he is in front of colleagues.

I’ve recently (last 6 months) started a new job. I’ve worked in office environments before but am slightly unsure on how to deal with this issue.When I started work I met this guy and we are both from the same city and both working abroad. He delved into personal problems and I ended up giving him advice. I later found out that he ranks quite high in the company. Acting professional every time I see him, I say hello or try to be friendly. However, this has become difficult as he ignores me in very obvious ways or he will give me a look of disgust if I say hello when he is in front of colleagues.

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Rudeness By New Employee

Question to Ask the Workplace Doctors about rudeness: We have a very new person who I have to supervise, She is extremely aggressive, yet ignorant regarding her job. The problem is she is becoming quite resentful toward me. I admit she annoys me very much and at times I am short with her.

Hello, I love your column because work can be so crazy and you make a lot of sense. My question is about meetings that are my job to chair. We have a very new person who I have to supervise, She is extremely aggressive, yet ignorant regarding her job. She is eager to make a contribution right away.She started off on her first day with a list of complaints and tried to rewrite her job description. She either does not understand or chooses to ignore most of my instruction. I don’t fault her for being eager but I can’t let her break rules that everyone else has to follow.I also have to stop her from jumping head first into projects that I can see will fail.

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Sloppy Appearance

Question to Ask the Workplace Doctors about grooming: She looks, in general, sloppy. Her clothes are wrinkly, not tucked in, and her hair is messy.

I work in a very small company, 30 employees. We have a staff member that follows the letter of the dress code, but not the spirit. For instance, if our dress code states that you can wear a polo shirt with slacks, she wears that, but she does not tuck the shirt in. She looks, in general, sloppy. Her clothes are wrinkly, not tucked in, and her hair is messy. She does not wear make-up, which is no big deal, but it contributes to her unprofessional appearance.

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Insutling Coworker But Managers Don’t Stop It

Question to Ask the Workplace Doctors about insulting behavior: She calls me “ugly” or “ugly Filipina” and other offensive remarks.

I work in a company that makes transformers of all kind. I recently got assigned in the winding area and am a winder now. Many ethnicities work here: Filipinos, Laotian and Mexicans. In the past few months a coworker who is Laotian has been giving me a hard time. She calls me “ugly” or “ugly Filipina” and other offensive remarks. One time I had to walk close to her because the man that works on the preparation area was standing by her and I needed to ask him for supplies. As I was walking away she said “Hurry up and get out of here I don’t want you here!”

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Problem Employee is Also A Problem Housemate!

Question to Ask the Workplace Doctors about housemate without a job: I am afraid that he will never get hired again.

I have a friend who has a problem with every employer he has ever worked with. I suspect he has the Peter Pan Syndrome. He cannot get along with others, does not have any friends and is lazy, (among other things. He recently got laid off/job elimation. (Right!) I think that this person has a problem with anyone he considers a threat. He has been putting out fliers for jobs for quite a while. I am afraid that he will never get hired again. (Peter Pan Syndrome is a person who will not grow up, accept responsibility of any kind,is lazy, overweight, and unkempt, etc.) I need to know this soon so I will not end up paying his bills or mortgage, and remove myself from the house before he loses it. I am ex-military and it is hard for me to deal with him!

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Ridicule By A Subordinate In Front of Others

Question to Ask the Workplace Doctors about ridicule by a subordinate: One of the younger female techs printed my notes and proceeded to highlight and verbally comment on each of the grammar and spelling mistakes she found. I walked into the common area where this was taking place and she repeatedly made sarcastic comments, all the while going to town with her highlighter.

I am a working floor supervisor over 18 techs in a department of a large hospital. Yesterday I headed a departmental meeting at the request of the Department Supervisor (my boss) who was absent. A nurse took notes during the meeting and afterwards I typed up the notes and distributed them via e-mail. One of the younger female techs printed my notes and proceeded to highlight and verbally comment on each of the grammar and spelling mistakes she found. I walked into the common area where this was taking place and she repeatedly made sarcastic comments, all the while going to town with her highlighter. She then took the notes and pointed out errors to other employees, all the while laughing about it. She kept coming back to me to point out my mistakes and their “corrections”.

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Subordinate Wants My Job

Question to Ask the Workplace Doctors about someone who wants your job:

How can I deal with a manager who reports to me, but who strongly believes she should have my job, and challenges me all the time?

Signed, On The Defensive

Dear On The Defensive:

There are at least three approaches to take when someone you manage thinks they should be managing you.

1. Make sure you are performing so excellently that your own bosses would never consider replacing you. If the subordinate wants your job, she may be maneuvering behind your back about it. Make sure your own managers see you as a strong contributor.

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He said …He said

Question to Ask the Workplace Doctors about threats: Employee A waited 3 weeks before reporting anything to his supervisor, at which point Employee A got a restraining order against Employee B.

I have an employee(Employee A) who claims another employee(Employee B) threatened him with a knife 3 times within a month(no witnesses). Employee A waited 3 weeks before reporting anything to his supervisor, at which point Employee A got a restraining order against Employee B.

This made it impossible for the both of them to continue working. We (Upper Management) don’t believe it actually happened. We put them both on suspension without pay until the restraining order is lifted. Employee A tends to be very dramatic and Employee B can get easily frustrated but never threatening. (The knife was a company issued work knife and Employee B says he took it out as a joke to pretend to attack a piece of equipment, then put it away.) They’re in the construction trade and have to work together alone. They haven’t gotten along for awhile, but it wasn’t this bad before.What can you suggest as the best way out of this?

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Subordinate called Manager an Idiot

Question to Ask the Workplace Doctors about name calling: One of my staff members said I was an idiot in direct conversation.

I have just been told by the manager of another department that one of my staff members said I was an idiot in direct conversation. How should I handle that? Background: While handling an issue, brought to my attention by a staff member, I called the manager of another department for help.

The issue would be one that impacted both departments, so I felt that decision was warranted.At the end of the day, the manager that I called stopped by my desk to tell me that not five minutes after we solved the problem, my staff member called to say that she knew what she was doing and didn’t know why I called. Then she said I was an idiot! This manager felt I should know.Can I write this employee up for making a derogatory comment about me to another manager?

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Executive Assistant Grooming

Question to Ask the Workplace Doctors about grooming.

We hired a new executive assistant who can easily handle the job functions. However, her hair and face is often “not fresh”. We were thinking of some sort of grooming etiquette course. Any suggestions?

Signed, Wanting to Help

Dear Wanting to Help:

You provided me with additional information and I responded about that. But, for the sake of our readers, let me provide an overview of our discussion.

1. If the employee looked appropriate during interviews, conversations and meetings, prior to being hired, you know she can continue to look that way. Consider simply saying, “Mary, we may not have made it clear in the interview, but we are very, very focused on having every employee present a good image to our clients and patients. One way to do that is to look every day as though it was the first day on the job. I notice you are much more casual in your overall appearance than you were then. Here’s one way to know how to do it–pretend every day is that new job interview you had with us, and duplicate your overall look then.”That’s awkward, I know, but it needs to be said.

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