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AIBU to refuse to work with these colleagues again

(30 Posts)
EmeraldIsle100 Mon 05-Sep-16 21:25:53

I have recently been cleared of a bullying and harassment charge at work. The allegations were brought by 2 colleagues who just would not do a day's work which meant that I had to do the work of 3 people. Despite repeatedly bringing the issues to the attention of my line manager for over 3.5 years nothing was done and the stress that it caused me was immense. I had trouble sleeping and ended up on anxiety medication. Every aspect of my life sufferred included my relationship with my husband and my children.

I have just been notified of the outcome and although I have not yet met with HR to get a full overview of the outcome I do know that the Panel recognised the stress that I was placed under. I intend on saying that I will refuse to work with these colleagues again.

Do you think that I am justified in refusing to work with these colleagues on the grounds that I spent over 3 years training and mentoring them to no avail. I don't know how this will go down but I think I should stick to my guns.

I would very much appreciate your views. Thanks very much.

DementedUnicorn Mon 05-Sep-16 21:38:35

Very much depends on the job/work environment if it's even realistically possible. Within my job, it wouldn't even be considered as it just wouldn't be feasible.

Tiredbutfuckingfine Mon 05-Sep-16 21:39:37

I think that you should take a deep breath and pause.
Chances are these two will refuse to work with you and you won't need to say anything.
Clearly they have embarrassed themselves making this up and showed how ineffectual they are, whereas you have just been getting on with the job.
Any good employer should be looking into the way forward, offering mediation etc.
I know you've had a shite time, but hold your nerve and stay professional and rational as it just highlights that they are not.

RiverTam Mon 05-Sep-16 21:41:09

I'd be more inclined to say that I wouldn't work for that line manager any more, they sound utterly ineffectual.

Not helpful, though, sorry!

EmeraldIsle100 Mon 05-Sep-16 22:02:39

All replies are hugely helpful and thanks very much for taking the time to reply. Tired, you are spot on and actually they had already told the boss that they were not prepared to work with me.

You all made great points and I will hold fire. I am just so annoyed about the whole thing that I have been having fantasies about going in to work and saying that things will be on my terms going forward - not going to happen. With the structure in place I can say that I am not prepared to work with the line manager again and I will do this. She was mind boggingly rubbish at her job and too great delight in trying to belittle me.

I know it's mean but now that the outcome is known I really want to see them die of embarrassment next time they see me because so far they have taken every opportunity to sneer at me when I see them in the corridor or in the kitchen.

Thanks again.

blueshoes Mon 05-Sep-16 22:46:30

Do you all share the same line manager? If those are not pulling their weight, it is for the manager to monitor and performance manage them after you have raised it. You should not have to raise it repeatedly.

Well done on making it through this stressful time. Can you work for another line manager without repercussions? If so, that sounds like the best solution.

Otherwise unless you are getting support, I would think that life is too short and would probably look for another job at the same time.

EmeraldIsle100 Mon 05-Sep-16 23:06:52

We do share the same line manager and I have been bringing the under performance issues to her attention for over 3 years to no avail. In the end I took it to HR myself and this prompted them to submit the complaint.

Thanks for saying well done, that's really nice to hear. I might be able to work for another line manager and I will make enquiries. If I have to go through this again I will just leave. No job on the planet would be worth it. Thanks very much for your advice.

EmeraldIsle100 Wed 07-Sep-16 19:32:33

I have been working out of the office for the last two days and am dreading going back tomorrow. Apparently the proverbial hit the fan when the colleague found out that her case was not upheld and colleagues on her side all huddled together and no doubt joined in the biggest hate fest against me. Some of them don't speak to me over the head of it anyway so I will be getting daggers tomorrow for certain.

I know I was vindicated but with the drama in there along with a very weak boss I am pretty certain I am going to cop some flak tomorrow. My boss is a creep of the highest order and has already expressed exasperation at me about the case.

My plan is just to keep repeating something along the lines that the Panel ruled that the allegations against me were not upheld. Wish me well please.

EmeraldIsle100 Wed 07-Sep-16 19:35:50

Incidentally there were 2 complaints and neither of them were upheld but one colleague is out of the country at the moment and won't be back in the office for another 10 days.

t4nut Wed 07-Sep-16 19:38:17

I think there's a question to ask the HR dept about how you're going to be supported following being cleared of a false accusation.

morningtoncrescent62 Wed 07-Sep-16 19:44:43

I share your pain, OP. I had something similar a few years ago - it was the most horrible time I've ever had at work. Some of the same stuff about colleagues taking sides happened to me, and for a long time I felt ganged-up on and hated going in. I work in quite a large organisation, and it was possible for the colleague in question to be moved to another office so that we don't see each other every day, and as far as reasonably possible we don't work together - we're at a similar grade, and we both have said we refuse to work on a project led by the other one. We can't completely avoid working together, and we do sometimes have to be on the same (large) team, but it doesn't happen that often.

As part of the dispute I ended up having conflict resolution with my line manager who had handled the situation appallingly by burying their head in the sand and hoping it would go away while things deteriorated around us. I wasn't sure about doing the conflict resolution, but it worked well, and if you're offered the chance I'd recommend doing it.

I'm sure you'll find that things will get better. It took me quite a few months to recover even though like you I'd been found completely blameless, but now it's almost as if it never happened and most of my workplace relationships are back to where they should be. Certainly I don't feel that people are talking about me any more - I think the reality is that people soon move on.

Best of luck for tomorrow - just hold your head up high and remember that you've done nothing wrong, and anyone whose opinion you value will know that.

EmeraldIsle100 Wed 07-Sep-16 19:45:31

Great point t4, I will ask that question, thanks very much, that makes me feel better already.

EmeraldIsle100 Wed 07-Sep-16 19:47:22

Mornington, I have to race out the door this minute to give someone a lift. I will reply when I get back, thanks a million for taking the time to post.

ImperialBlether Wed 07-Sep-16 19:53:04

Personally, I would have my phone on record the whole time.

The thing is if it wasn't upheld, that's admitting they were lying, isn't it? I think you should speak to HR the very second anything gets nasty - you shouldn't have to put up with it.

And is it possible to only do your job?

LellyMcKelly Wed 07-Sep-16 20:46:29

You have been cleared, and you shouldn't have to move. They should. Have you thought of the possibility of taking out a grievance against them (you'd need to be very sure of your footing), or even your line manager?

MauledbytheTigers Wed 07-Sep-16 21:33:55

Sorry to be the bearer of bad news and I'm not saying it is the case here but before the thread runs away I just want to point out that not upholding a HDB complaint is not the same thing as saying the conplainsnts were making it up.

Now I don't know the ins and outs and it may well be that HR do think it was a false accusation in which case I would expect disciplinary action to be taken against the conplainants. However just to warn you OP that they may not have found against you because there was a lack of evidence either disciplinary decisions are made on balance of probabilities, HR would not uphold the complaint against you.

You will of course know more once you've read the report and can ask questions then..but I just wanted to prepare you for this as they sound awful and while you know the accusations are false that doesn't necessarily mean HR also found that.

EmeraldIsle100 Wed 07-Sep-16 21:34:09

Mornington, your situation is almost identical to mine and this is also the most horrible time I have ever had in the workplace. I feel ganged up on and that is why I am dreading the morning. Funnily I work in a large organisation too.

Just like yours my line manager handled the situation really badly, it would be more correct to say she did nothing whilst the place fell apart around us. I am pissed off but determined to be professional and if conflict resolution is an option I will take it. Great to hear that it was a positive experience for you.

It seems like it will never get better and I would give anything to be able to say that it is like it never happened. It has been going on so long it is just my normal. I have worked in other amazing teams but they seem like a far distant memory. I will pretend to be you tomorrow and walk in with my head high.

Imperial all day today I have been debating whether to record the meeting with my boss and the only thing worrying me is if he spots it and freaks. He is a dishonest devious person and he is getting very tetchy because one section of his department is in complete disarray. That's me decided now, I will record it.

Lelly, I am so close to taking a grievance against my line manager that it is not funny. She has ruined the last 3.5 years for me. I will see how the next few days go because I don't know how healthy it would be for me to get involved in any more procedures. I would like to just move on.

I could do my job myself but there would be no business continuity if I was ever absent. Well my boss will have to sort out that problem.

When I get in tomorrow I will get the low down from HR and see what my options are.

It is fantastic to hear your experiences and I really appreciate it. I feel a whole lot stronger about tomorrow. Thanks again to you all for taking the time to post.

EmeraldIsle100 Wed 07-Sep-16 21:41:31


That is exactly why I have been so anxious about tomorrow and the complainants will take that precise view. I know what actually went on but getting that across to the the Panel was extremely difficult.

I actually cried today when thinking about that outcome but hey what can I do. All I know so far is the the complaints were not upheld but what does that actually mean? When I see the report I will know more. Thanks for preparing me.

ImperialBlether Wed 07-Sep-16 22:04:22

Is it possible for HR to move you to another team? It's not really good practice to have you working with them under those circumstances.

ImperialBlether Wed 07-Sep-16 22:04:57

Better for you to move than all of them (unless they got fired) - it would be really good for you to have a fresh start.

PlanIsNoPlan Wed 07-Sep-16 22:13:05

I'm trying to imagine how any of you get any actual work done?

EmeraldIsle100 Wed 07-Sep-16 22:24:26

Yeah, its very tricky to get work done when two people don't communicate with me at all and the line manager avoids me like the plague. Laughable really. I just plough on and try to get it done. It is actually easier to get it done on my own.

I used to have to waste so much time training them over and over on the same things and reviewing their work which was half-hearted to say the least. They could take anything up to a day to do work that should take a an hour and I am not exaggerating. I gave one of them work to do once which should take an hour and a half and I got it back 5 days later and it wasn't finished. I reported this to my boss. Nothing got done because we were awaiting the outcome of the complaints.

I think I will be taken out of that (dysfunctional) team and moved to another area. The only thing is then I will have no support but honestly no support is better than the support that they provide.

PaulAnkaTheDog Wed 07-Sep-16 22:25:01

Are you civil service op?

EmeraldIsle100 Wed 07-Sep-16 22:32:33

Public authority Paul. You are probably asking because it would have to be a public organisation for staff to think an hour's work a day is enough. They wouldn't last until half past 9 in the private sector.

SquinkiesRule Wed 07-Sep-16 22:51:28

Well if they move you, it won't be long before the bosses realize how little work they did there will be no you picking up the slack.

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