Hostile Workplace


I face a hostile work environment. My coworker accused me of threatening her. She filed a complaint. It’s totally false but my employer suspended me. That coworker came early to work, about one and half hour, and she wanted keys to the store. I gave her them, but now I won’t because I don’t trust her. If she does any thing wrong I’m responsible, not her.




Dear Suspended:

I’m sorry that you were suspended. I can’t understand from what you wrote what it was, about which your coworker complained, that got you suspended. But that doesn’t really matter now. What does matter is how you will react. Will you brood at home about how unfair it was? Will you return to work with bitter gossip about that coworker and your boss who suspended you? Or will you face up to anything you have might have done or not done that caused your coworker to complain?

You naturally want to defend your self and to get back at those you think have done you wrong. Therefore, guard against becoming soured and adding to what you say is a hostile environment. · Use this time to think through what you might do to learn what provoked your coworker and if you were in the wrong, apologize. · Don’t become obsessed with finding fault with that coworker and your boss. Rather focus on doing your job well. · Get clear on Who does what. · Check when it is needed. · Focus on what is required to please your internal and external customers? · Assist your coworkers and boss in ways you can to make their jobs more effective and easier. · Think of ways to add sunshine to your workplace. · Don’t pollute its environment with toxic talk. · Think big; how you might help change that hostile environment to an employee-friendly one.

Does this make sense? So now while suspended use that time to scout for other jobs should your suspension lead to firing. Or use this time to explore where you might get training that will make you better able to do your job or find work elsewhere. Or at least use this time to clean your house and get some rest.

Work is hard enough without conflict with one’s coworker and boss. If you’ve read my answers to other questions, you’ve seen my closing sentence. What do you think it means and how might it apply to your workplace? Working together with hands, head, and heart takes and makes big WEGOS.

William Gorden