New job, big problem, what would you do?(19 Posts)
On paper- the job is the job of my dreams. I felt very lucky to get it- it's a very niche market - and unique. I have the prerequisite skills but not necessarily the "niche" knowledge. But this was all known when I was offered the job. I had a 5 hour hand over and 4 sides of A4.
The management structure is an unusual and informal one- they all say I'm doing great. However I work with one direct colleague who is at the same level as me. We have different roles. The colleague from day one has been "prickly" (understatement). The individual did have a lot going on personally and was approaching a stressful time of year for their role- so I kept this in mind and absorbed it. However things culminated on Friday with the individual yelling a torrent of abuse at me and ultimately calling me a slapper. No witnesses obv.
I feel I cannot go on in post. I simply do have to resign don't I? No matter what I do I'm always in the wrong. I'm reasonably confident that management are happy with my work to date- but I can't face any more verbal. Plus I have no chance to learn the "niche" market without being able to ask this individual the odd question . If I ask I get "dunno"- then if i get it wrong ( or imperfect ) I get flamed.
Ironically she can also be lovely - to the point I genuinely think she has MH issues- but that's obv nothing to do with me.
Sorry for the long post- just gutted to have to leave what is on paper the job of my dreams for this-
I guess you'd have to consider office politics, but I think you should go and talk to your boss and explain what has happened. I don't think you should have to leave when you've done nothing wrong. My guess is that this won't be the first time your colleague has behaved in this way. People will know what she's like..
I do plan to speak to one of the managers that was on the panel when they recruited me.
But with the type of organisation they are, whilst it's not right, I don't see how that could do anything about it without leaving them self in a sticky spot staff wise - and I get that.
I'm used to large public sector organisations - where there would be all manner of policies in place for this.
You've not nothing to lose by telling the panel boss, 'it's her or me, and if it's me I want a bloody good reference and pay off'. Be clear about the verbal abuse and unhelpfulness.
You could source yourself some training. No one colleague is actually indispensable. Nor should they be.
What have you done to try to deal with the problem? I think you should try to tackle it, with the individual, then with mgt if no joy, I wouldn't quit until I'd tried to sort it out (& failed).
No! Don't resign! The problem is your colleagues, not yours. But you have to find a way of working with this.
Presumably you have someone that you report to? You must go and talk to them about what's happened. Keep it as objective and factual as you can though.
My guess is this colleague might be why the previous person left the role...
Don't leave without at least trying to tackle this
I think you should write a report of the incident and send it to HR (if there is an HR dept) and your line manager.
Ask them for support and advice in dealing with the problem.
You shouldn't have to resign but equally you shouldn't have to deal with this by yourself.
Definitely don't resign.
Speak to your manager - do you have regular supervision? Or is it all a bit informal?
Perhaps you could ask your prickly colleague how they'd like to be approached re: niche information? Ie email questions as and when or save a few to send one a week /every few days?
I'd be tempted to email everything anyway as then you've got it all documented.
Are there any professional forums that you could join to 'spread the load'?
This recently happened to me in a new job. I told my manager, and phrased it as something I had to tell him because it was preventing me from doing my job and asked for his advice on how to deal with it. I was matter-of-fact about what my colleague said and asked him for insight as to this person.
I was certainly not the first person my colleague was rude to. My manager arranged for a discussion with her manager and I spoke to her manager directly. She eventually came to apologise to me.
Her behaviour had previously been swept under the carpet for various reasons. I think the fact that I was new made them see her behaviour through fresh eyes. It helped that I was well regarded.
You are too, so don't underestimate your ability to stop this nut case in her tracks. Or at least create enough of a record against her so you have a credible case if it came down to either one of you. Definitely don't resign. You have as good a chance of resolving this as any.
Her mental health problems are her issues. Although some accommodation can be made, verbal abuse is bang out of order. It is a no-brainer. She has to learn to manage her behaviour as she is creating a hostile environment for you.
You have every right to file a complaint
Re your comment about how they would be in a sticky spot staff wise - how bad can it be? What has that to do with her treating you badly?
LineyReborn, sadly there is no training that I could take up to learn the knowledge that I need to learn - its a learn on the job kind of situation - its quite extensive too. I would agree that no one should be indispensable - but she's pretty close to it I reckon.
Chewbacca, there was an occasion last monday. I had been asked by "top boss" to compile a report - which I did and he was very pleased with. A committee member wanted a document included - which I couldn't locate - and could not get any help in locating - so I proceeded to present the document to the committee as I had it. It got raised (politely) by the member that the document wasn't included. At this point - my colleague had been cc'd in the request. So she went to a filing cabinet ( which she had previously venomously told me to go no where near as there was nothing of interest to me in it) bought the folder over , threw it on my desk and proceeded to rant that it was not rocket science and I just needed to get off my backside...... At that point I asked her why she was so rude - she replied she wasn't - and I simply replied that she was. That was that - for that day!
BIWI - this either needs sorting ( I cannot fathom how) or I need to resign - this really is not a workable situation - at all. There isn't really anyone that I report to - its quite a unique set up!
AnotherEmma - there is no HR
HeyMacWey - its all very informal ! No regular supervision at all. I have got to the point that I email everything any way - she is less likely to yell at me that way (but not impossible) and then I have evidence that I have raised the question. I don't know of any professional forums - but I reckon there must be some so I will look into that ( while job hunting!)
Blueshoes, sorry you have been in a similar situation - I'm so glad it was resolved for you. I will definitely be speaking to a couple of the significant people as I will be telling them that it is my only reason for resigning - because it will be. Her behaviour swings from vile to quite pleasant - but I have honestly never been spoken to so badly by a colleague - or possibly anyone. On Friday she also called me a "silly little girl", told me I was shit at my job etc.
Lorelei76 -I honestly don't expect them to "deal" with her given how short they would be on knowledgable staff.
Why not tell the top boss or whoever the logical person is?
And also don't assume they're desperate to keep her, they might not have enough information to get rid of her.
If you feel you'd like to resign as the least stressful option for you, I totally understand, it's just from your phrasing I feel like you would stay if this problem was addressed.
Lorelei76, I will be speaking to a reasonably top person about it on monday - as it took two months to get my contract - but I have been politely chased to sign and return it - which I haven't yet as it ties me into a 3 month notice period which there is no way I could agree to at the moment , so I will probably email that individual and explain my reason, argh!
That should be "also it took two months to get my contract"
You need to make a log. Keep a contemporaneous record of everything she says to you that is rude; calling you a silly little girl is not the worst abuse but it is spectacularly unprofessional. You should then raise the issue with management and present your account. Try to keep it emotionless. Just plain fact e.g. on x date at x time so and so said this. If it's preventing you from doing your job fully, they need to know.
BobbinThreadbare123, I agree that "silly little girl" is not the worst abuse - nor to be honest is calling me a slapper ? Although both rude. I have probably referred to it as abuse because she will start on an aggressive torrent of verbal.
I will start keeping a record.
I have to admit that I did think of recording my colleague's conversation. Not that it would be admissible in court. I was talked out of it as secretly recording would put me in a worse light when I had the upper hand and people were not disbelieving me.
You have nothing to lose and everything to gain, so go to the bosses.
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