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What to do when you just can't get on with a colleague?

(14 Posts)
BlueNeighbourhood Sat 18-Nov-17 20:01:25

Evening,

I've posted before about this woman I work with, but it's going to take forever to go into long detail so I'm going to try and list things as best I can, right now I'm on the verge of leaving my job (which I enjoy) over her so I'm in quite the quandry.

-I started work two and a half months ago in a brand new team. As of next week there will be five of us plus a manager and their manager. At present we are two down. I started the same day as this woman, who knew we had to travel for our training. She said she was told she had to come in my personal car with me on day 2 of knowing her on a four hour car journey which made me uncomfortable. Apparently she'd had some sort of fall which meant the DVLA banning her driving long distances (yet happily gets in her car to drive herself to local office)

-She overshares. I'm quite a private person, and the people I work with have little bits of information about me, yet if something is going on in her life, it's a huge deal and everyone has to know about it. She had a screaming row with her child on the telephone in my car and I could hear the kid sobbing. It wasn't cool at all, and this has made me lose respect for her

-She's obviously very lonely (my manager agrees with this) and resents the relationship me and the other girl in the office have (it's purely down to use being of similar ages), and so any chance she has she will interrupt the both of us when talking. Team meetings, conference calls, general conversation, she doesn't care when, she just has to be at the centre of everything. The type of person if you've been to Tenerife she's been to Elevenerife. She's been told about interrupting people before yet doesn't learn from this.

-Constant stealth boasts, our managers have advised us not to work from home at weekends. Me and my colleague don't, but she does and makes constant mention of this to get her point across she's working all hours. We all know it's because she doesn't have a life or really any friends at all so this is her only pleasure.

If you're still with me, thank you! However now it's got to the point I sit at the opposite end of the room to her but she's still loud and she still interrupts and still wants to be the centre of attention on everything. I dread going into work as I can't even stand the smell of smoke mixed with perfume from her and am considering leaving.

My Manager understands it's a complete clash of personalities but doesn't understand the extent of how I'm feeling at the moment, sometimes I try and tell her and I come across as probably just bitter and not a nice person. The only way out I can see is to leave.

Does anyone have any advice on this at all? Apparently she has form for this previously, one of the new people starting next week used to work with her and they had a blazing argument and stopped speaking.

Arrggghhhh I'm guessing nobody understands how frustrating it is unless you've been through it!

Lozmatoz Sat 18-Nov-17 20:14:08

It’s sounds horrible. I’m not sure speaking openly with her will help. I’d just be very obvious where you’re boundaries are with her. I recently stood up for myself with the office loudmouth and she reacted so Badly she’s decided not to speak to me - heaven! I don’t have to listen to all her long, boring stories about her daughter, smile politely at her one-up-man-ship, and she no longer butts into my conversations. It’s awesome! Not that I would ever suggest actively trying to piss someone off, but just make it know exactly how you plan to interact with her.

Lozmatoz Sat 18-Nov-17 20:15:08

Can I ask how old you are? It seems to me that it gets much easier to not be bothered by people the older I get,

FixItUpChappie Sat 18-Nov-17 20:25:22

I would only speak to her about work and otherwise calmly carry on as if she didn't exist aside from perfunctory wry smiles and "hmmms" where socially required. I would avoid complaining about personality issues to a Manager though - they probably don't like her either but there's one at every office worldwide I'll wager.

BlueNeighbourhood Sat 18-Nov-17 20:31:07

I'm 33, and I'd guess she's late 40's, early 50's.

I do try - as in this week I've decided to go to the other end of the country for an optional work visit to be out of the way of it. Our manager picked up a problem - apparently I was eye rolling when she was making comments about things which to be fair I probably was because she was talking for the sake of having her voice heard.

I cannot bear that patronising baby voice when on conference calls trying to say things that should be done when they in no way make our lives easier on our jobs. It's literally just for the sake of it! It does make me feel better to know theres one in every office and the term narcissist is something I've thought of when it comes to her too.

DerelictWreck Sat 18-Nov-17 20:39:32

First of all, this Tenerife she's been to Elevenerife is brilliant grin

Whenever she interprets obviously, just turn to her and go , 'gosh, did you mean to be so rude?'. Shame works wonders

BlueNeighbourhood Sat 18-Nov-17 21:02:08

Oh see DerelictWreck, if she were here now and you'd said my phrase was great she'd be onto it like a flash with a one she's made up just for this conversation that she originated herself!

I live long distance with my DP and I'm texting about it all now. Apparently there's very subtle ways to deal with this, less of the eye rolling and more making yourself heard more. It's that baby voice! Oh my gosh, and the time she announced on a management conference call a certain member of the team is sexy! Me and the other girl actually cringed, head in our hands moment but she felt like she'd done nothing untoward.

AlternativeTentacle Sat 18-Nov-17 21:05:38

leave her to it. people like that piss enough people off sooner or later.

HundredMilesAnHour Sat 18-Nov-17 23:22:22

If it's just this woman that's the problem and you like the rest of your job, don't leave. That would be silly! Just minimise contact with her and be professional and courteous but nothing more. That means stopping the eye-rolling!!! You obviously aren't the only person feeling this way about her and if you have a new person starting soon who has a bad history with her, things will no doubt come to a head eventually. But you need to be the grown-up here and stay professional and not cause people (your manager!) to have a bad perception of YOU.

I know it's hard but you need to try to switch off from her. I'm in a similar situation where I work. There is a woman who is several grades more senior than me but for some reason she is threatened by me (I joined a few months ago, she has been there for years). She's complained about me to my face (that didn't go well for her - I think she was expecting me to be sorry and instead she got both barrels) which I had to escalate to my boss and his boss (who both supported me and agreed that it's personal with this woman and I've done nothing wrong other than be good at my job). So she then complained about me to one of our C-level Execs (so the boss of my boss of my boss!). I am now having to prove myself to him without revealing that I know what she's done. It's annoying, irritating and exhausting. She's a menace and I want to do a damn sight more than eye roll any time I have contact with her but I know that I need to stay whiter-than-white to win this game. You need to do the same OP. Sit tight, be professional, be patient.

KarmaNoMore Sat 18-Nov-17 23:32:31

Watching with interest, I 'm also considering leaving a job I love because I'm meant to be working with an atrae I cannot bear.

LordEmsworth Sun 19-Nov-17 07:50:13

Hang on - sauce for the goose and all...

She's been told about interrupting people before yet doesn't learn from this.
and
Our manager picked up a problem - apparently I was eye rolling when she was making comments about things

You sit there rolling your eyes while she talks, your manager tells you off, but you don't seem to have learnt anything from that.

You don't have to like everyone you work with, you don't have to be their friend. That's fine. But you not liking someone, doesn't make them a bad person.

In 2.5 months you've befriended the only other person in your team to the point of this person feeling left out, and you have decided that she "doesn't have a life or any friends" because she is basically an unlikable person. That's not very nice behaviour on your part, is it? Doesn't exactly lift team spirits...

By all means minimise your contact with her, refuse to give her lifts, and don't tell her anything personal about you. I agree, I wouldn't like any of what you describe. But if you carry on the way you are, you may find it's her making the complaint about you - and as your manager has previously warned you, you may find yourself in a very unpleasant situation...

AmeliaFlashtart Sun 19-Nov-17 10:11:48

I'm a bit hmm at you discussing her percieved 'lonely state' with your manager, character assasination isn't the way to go. You have a right to tell your manager if her behaviour is preventing you from doing your job.

It comes across that you just don't like her and I'm afraid most of us who work will have to do so with someone we don't like. Syop the hostile eye rolling, if she interrupts just put up a hand and calmly say sorry can I finish (every time). You can't exclude her even though you want her gone.

knaffedoff Sun 19-Nov-17 10:26:05

All this eye rolling, befriending other team members and complaining about her to your manager sounds very hostile. sad

BlueNeighbourhood1 Sun 19-Nov-17 11:00:04

My Manager brought it up with me - I think in an attempt to let me understand the situation more.

It was my manager who gave me all the details about her character as I wasn't involved enough to realise. And also, in the initial OP I have said I'm contemplating leaving as I don't like and never will like the woman. It's a complete clash of personalities, me and the other girl can't help we are similar ages and have things in common so can have a conversation? We've tried to involve her but every time it's turned into me me me.

So I am about to give up and walk away. I don't want to be around people who make me hate my day and are so self centred it's unbeliveable.

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