Favortism Where I Work

Question to Ask the Workplace Doctors about playing favors:

I work for a medical billing office. My supervisor shows favoritism to several employees. They use our company computers to make airline reservations and to use Face book and other network places, and she does not do anything about it. She has warned us all not to do this, but when she is not there, the games begin. I feel if I would do the same thing as they do, I would be made an example out of, or fired. Also, if they complain at all about the rest of us, she believes these few employees. It has made me lose the desire to go to work. I love this job…I have invested 10 years. What can I do?

Signed, Not A Favorite

Dear Not A Favorite:

You are not alone in thinking your supervisor has favorites and you aren’t one of them. This happens from grade school through college and into the workplace. The important thing, in spite of feeling less favored, is that you have a ten-year record in your place of employment, and that fact is evidence that you have a needed skill; one in medical billing that is a much needed job skill.

Also, you are not alone in that often a conscientious employee sees her/his coworkers play games and do personal business while they should be working. My wife sees that everyday and she too says her supervisor ignores it for her favorites. Is there hope for you in your office? I don’t know.

But you have several choices:

· Grit your teeth and ignore the seeming indifference of your supervisor to those who don’t comply with her rules. Very possibly, playing on the Internet when one’s job is done is a good break for hard and sometimes boring work.

· Play yourself. Think fun. You too might benefit from a little off duty play. If you are reprimanded, get the support of those coworkers who play around frequently. You might even come up with computer contests; games such as computer scrabble. Initiate a little competition. · Formally report on your play around coworkers. Submit a request for an investigation. Log the times you have seen computer play rather than work.

· Think like the boss. Think up ways to cut wasted time, energy, needless rules, time-saving ways, and most of all ways to save money for your company. Once you do this you will see your self as a value-added employee. Once you do that you will have topics to raise with your supervisor and together you might find ways to make her job easier. If you find such topics for conversation, you will speak more often with you boss and consequently will not see her as playing favorites. Propose skull sessions. Almost every work place has untapped resources; and by that I mean those of you on the job. You and your coworkers are closest to the job. You know what is frustrating. You know the kind of mistakes that cause complaints and time repairing them. You know what might be done better and what might make your internal and external customers more pleased. From what little you say, I assume that you work group doesn’t function as a team. If you can get your supervisor to see her self as a coach instead of a supervisor, she would call those in your work group together to brainstorm on quality improvement and ways that you might make each others’ jobs easier. Pretend you are a cheerleader rather than a victim of the favorites. Do that and your work group will see itself as a team. Do any of these suggestions make sense or prompt some can-do ideas? It is a shame that you are conflicted; hating to go to work at a job that you love. You can see your self as a victim or as a doer. Don’t work scared to open your mouth. The odds are that someone with ten years of billing skill won’t be fired, especially if you are thinking like a manager who talks up ways to make your medical billing work better. How might my signature sentence apply to your workplace: Working together with hands, head, and heart takes and makes big WEGOS?

William Gorden