To complain about a work colleague (loooooong)(10 Posts)
Name changed for this so doesn't link to previous posts and bust me at work though as I type am worried it's glaringly obvious!
So a bit of background...
Worked for employer for 8 years and for majority of that time I have worked with a colleague, though initially by phone /email as a contact in another area. Let's call her A.
Around 4 years ago we became part of the same team, working together on a daily basis, we would go for lunch together, friends on Facebook etc though never met outside work, but classed her as a friend
Things changed a while back, can't put my finger on it exactly but believe /assume the following may have contributed
* another person joined our team (call her B) who A used to work closely with (she was a contact for me too in the same sense as A was). I always got on with B but since her joining her team I have found her to come across quite negatively and very much against doing things in a different way (which given the nature of our jobs is a regular requirement)
* our managers role has been taken on by someone else, who approaches things very differently and has made a lot of changes to how we work. A has made it clear she doesn't approve of new manager.
* part of new managers difference is to delegate more work to us. Being a new area of work I saw this as good experience, A objected feeling she was 'doing their job for them '
So what changed...
Initially A would make remarks about our manager returning and actually has a countdown of the weeks, I just tried to ignore /brush off these remarks
A would also object to any suggestions to change procedure - sometimes I would agree it was a bad idea we needed to raise with manager, other times I would explain how I thought it might be a bit of a nuisance but actually not a bad idea going forward
So basically so far a bit of a difference of opinion, felt her remarks about manager were unprofessional but generally things were OK
Have noticed of late A and B seem to be 'conspiring' more and frequently moan about boss when not around
They don't seem to discuss things they work on with me or other members of team which makes our work difficult as although we all work in our own area, each impacts in a greater or lessor way on each other
A frequently meets up with previous manager for lunch without telling or inviting anyone else (not sure why this bothers me but I like manager too, we have had team lunches previously but just seems a bit sneaky)
A has stopped discussing pretty much anything work related with me which makes managing my workload difficult. She will book things into my diary without discussion (we would previously manage own diary and book into each others only after discussion) and I don't feel I can discuss this with her as when I have in the past she gets immediately defensive
Have come to notice A is making more mistakes at work, DH says maybe she is worried that when manager is back they too will notice and she's worried about her job. I am not generally a confident person but I do feel I have improved my work and skills since taking on new tasks and she has struggled with the technical side of things but I don't really care about this - she has her own skill set in other areas (that I don't have) and I would be willing to help if she needed it but instead she makes PA comments
I feel her negative attitude is bringing me down. I have a history of depression and I am having a difficult time at the moment, (so know this may skew my view ) and equally she has had a pretty tough year in her personal life which I have tried to acknowledge, but I am getting to the point I dread being alone with or having a conversation with her
She has been complaining about 'unreasonable ' expectations of her meeting deadlines but when I have offered to help she declines, sometimes politely other times snapping at me. AFAIK she has not raised this with manager at all
I feel like this came to a head Friday when manager asked her about a piece of work she was working on and if it would be completed on time and she snapped about how she was doing her best but had x y and z to do but she needed time to eat lunch/go to loo and finish 'everything else'
When manager was away from the desk she started really ranting about their expectations and mock whipped her monitor exclaiming things like 'must work harder, must finish work, can't go home, must sleep in office to get work done'
It sounds awful and cringey writing it down but I just can't work like this. I do struggle myself from time to time but aside from the odd general 'rant' about not enough time in the day feel that if you have issues with workload you should raise it with a manager not just rant moan and sulk all day
I don't feel I can broach this with her but equally feel a 'grass' if I go to manager, plus for things to change manager will need to raise it with A and she'll know it was me
Also both A and B have worked there FOREVER and I feel people don't want to 'rock the boat'
I raised concerns about Bs attitude to manager before but to make them aware rather than raise it with her
I don't know what to do, I feel I either carry on and 'suck it up' trying to ignore A moaning or raise it but feel like a cow
Sorry for length of post- if you are still awake advice is welcome x
It's so difficult working through periods of change when some of the team are being so negative. One thought, from my experience of working with and managing people who.had been at a place for years and were expected to deal with changes level of technical detail and volume of work is to find out what motivates them. You have obviously been motivated by the extra challenge and chance to do things in a different way, keeping things interesting. They are clearly not motivated by this, and perhaps need regular recognition or thanks from their manager. Not sure how you influence this though - could you speak to your manager about the team but without naming names, talking about how the changes are stressful and you think it would do the team good to get some positive feedback on how well everyone is doing? Then the conversation is not about whether people are coping with the work but acknowledging that it's a time of change and some positive team-building type recognition would be helpful for everyone. I know most places don't do that very well though.
Goodness, that was long!
Sounds like A doesn't rate your new manager as much as you do, nothing you can do about that.
Hide your diary from her.
It can be really quite unnerving when a new person starts working in a team - especially if the team have worked together for some time. It can really change the team dynamics. It sounds like A is struggling with this (yanbu for saying / feeling that she's not dealing with this in the right way though)!! I wonder whether acknowledging (with A & B present) that the team dynamics may have changed and you "miss" the old days might help? Not that you think your new manager isn't any good / up to par, but that you've noticed that things seem different nowadays and it's leading you to be a little less satisfied at work.
That's what I'd do - but you may not find this works in your situation. Either way, I think an acknowledgment that things seem to have changed may be good, to enlighten A to her behaviour? She may not be self aware enough to see that she has behaved unreasonably and that it's affecting you.
I can't bring myself to read all that. Can you summarise the issue in a few sentences?
I think the lot of you need detention. You are at work. Delete the facebook friendships.
I am HR. It sounds like "he said, she said, they said". Get your head down and get on with the work. Rwmember there are three sides to every story. Her side, his did and the truth. I bet the lot of you are causing much eye rolling.
I did warn it was long!
Nina - thanks for the tips , I will see if approaching it that way helps
Snowfairy - I can't hide my diary, it's online calendars linked to our email which the whole company as standard.
I appreciate I can't change her opinion of manager but I find it difficult when she complains about them /to me constantly expecting my agreement
Orwells child - the thing is I don't miss the old days in the sense they do, i.e they just want the old manager back and before these recent changes I never (physically ) worked with B, but A and B have worked together physically for years...
Oysterbabe - basically I got on really well with a colleague, we got a new manager and now she (and another relatively new team member who used to work with her previously) just seems to have everything developed a very negative attitude to work and our manager and constantly shares this with me /other colleagues leaving me feeling awkward and unhappy at the negative atmosphere
Beau - I'm only friends on Facebook with people at work I consider friends, hence person A (who requested me FYI and I've been debating for a while how to delete her without causing offence/ awkwardness ) and not any sort of management as I keep work and personal life seperate when possible.
It sounds like "he said, she said, they said". Get your head down and get on with the work
This is my point and so I am intrigued as to where the eye rolling at all of us comes in. My point of posting is that I do keep quiet at work, and I do just get on with my work attempting to keep out of these conversations, but that it's making me unhappy at work due to the negative atmosphere and I don't know how I should deal with it
So what you need is a way of letting the constant comments washing over you because they are dragging you down.
I get that completely - I just don't have any answers!
It all comes down to how willing you are to confront this behaviour. A simple "guys, man you leave the manager bashing til you're on lunch / in the pub / away from the office, cause it's doing my head in a bit", or a more professional "I'm finding the atmosphere a little oppressive with the comments made towards manager, can you maybe think about the impact it has on others" may be the way forward. And if you're not one for a potential confrontation, maybe a delete from FB for A & B, and a brief chat with your manager explaining your finding thins a little negative at present and could (he?she?) keep an eye on A or B. I don't know - you'll know the potential outcomes of each scenario.
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