Junior colleagues attitude .How do be more assertive.

(14 Posts)
whatisforteamum Wed 03-Jul-19 11:17:48

I work in a team where the apprentice qualified and got promoted 2 steps instead of one.They are very young and not yet an adult.I have worked in the industry for several decades.
The promotion has gone to their head massively.Others have remarked how he speaks to me and I have let it go so far..we all were.teenagers once.
They are generally good at what they do and lack some skills obviously being very new to it all.However taking to criticizing myself and and others work is wearing.
How do I get them to drop the attitude.

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whatisforteamum Wed 03-Jul-19 11:21:43

They are friendly with our boss who is young too.

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newmomof1 Wed 03-Jul-19 11:29:44

"Not yet an adult"?

Maybe you're not the best person to speak to them if you're going to be so condescending. They're just as capable as anyone else if they've been given that position.

Are you their senior?
If not, you're clearly put out by their promotion but it's not your place to pull them up. Escalate it. (Or if their comments are invalid, say so.)

If you are, have a straight forward conversation. Tell them their attitude is inappropriate and the way it makes people feel. They probably don't realise.

whatisforteamum Wed 03-Jul-19 13:16:26

I am their senior.I take the responsibility for the workload quality and healthy and safety of the shift.and compliance.They do not.
I wasn't trying to be condescending I was simply giving them the benefit of the doubt as they are so young.I shouldn't really.
It is hard for me to check their work when I'm walking on eggshells.

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newmomof1 Wed 03-Jul-19 13:42:43

Don't walk on eggshells - treat them like you would treat anybody else who was speaking to the team in that way

whatisforteamum Thu 04-Jul-19 06:45:49

I have not had much experience of managing people.When someone is rude I normally let it slide as it is a stressful environment anyway
.Earlier this year I was left running days when someone left and used a more dictatorial style.This seemed to work for the most part.
However the new boss prefers.a.casual approach.More friendly.I agree morale is good perhaps for the young ones.I will speak to the boss see what he suggests.

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maxelly Thu 04-Jul-19 12:31:41

Thing is there is a middle ground between being a complete pushover and being an aggressive dictator... it's not always easy to find though and we all tend to naturally sway more towards one than the other. Getting some advice from your manager on how to tackle this sounds good.

I too tend to let minor rudeness etc. go but if you are responsible for health and safety and quality, and this employee is putting themselves/others/the company at risk by his actions I think you are duty bound to say something, all the more so as he is young and inexperienced and may genuinely not be aware of what he's doing. Some tips on difficult conversations/giving feedback I've picked up over the years:

-Try and talk to the person as soon as possible after the 'event'/'incident', but in a calm way and as far as possible in private/on neutral ground. So probably not on a busy 'shop floor' or in front of colleagues but ideally on the same day.

-Address the behaviour not the person, and give specifics. So e.g. saying 'You are rude, I don't like rude people' isn't likely to get good results, but 'I saw you shouting at Julie just now, shouting is rude behaviour and unacceptable' is better.

-Try and set corrections out positively not negatively, saying the behaviour you would like to see and why, not what you wouldn't. So e.g. 'Please remember to put the lid on the bottles of hazardous chemicals when you are finished, this prevents spills' rather than 'Don't leave the caps off the chemicals you idiot, you'll kill us all' grin . Also, just as you would when training an animal or child, try and 'catch' him doing things right and praising him, rather than always correcting (without being patronising of course, I'm not suggesting you clicker train him or reward him with kibble, although my staff do quite like biscuits!) - its human nature to respond better to positive than negative feedback.

TakenForSlanted Thu 04-Jul-19 19:33:06

So, let me get this straight: they were promoted ahead of you but you are their senior?

Does this mean they niw technically, if perhaps not functionally - outrank you but you are older and a lot more experienced?

Will try to help if I can contribute from the position of an experienced manager, but not quite clear on the situation.

CherryPavlova Thu 04-Jul-19 19:41:56

No don’t let rudeness slide unchecked but do it kindly.
As Maxelly says, address the specific behaviour and don’t be critical of the person. “Please don’t call me an idiot” as opposed to “You’re a rude simpleton”.
Catch the good. Ask their advice - even if you know the answer. I always ask our bright young things about IT despite being perfectly competent.

ScreamingValenta Thu 04-Jul-19 19:48:05

TakenForSlanted I read the OP that the apprentice skipped a grade when being promoted, not that the apprentice was promoted to a higher position than the OP.

whatisforteamum Thu 04-Jul-19 20:04:11

Yes they are beneath me and dragging me off to others.I think the fact they skipped a step was silly.My boss has even said so to someone else.Yes I have three more plus decades experience and I do always point out and praise the good behaviour of others.I'm so shocked when someone is blatantly rude to me.I wouldn't ever accept it from my dcs however unsure how to deal with it at work.

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whatisforteamum Thu 04-Jul-19 20:31:32

sagging me off

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HollowTalk Thu 04-Jul-19 20:38:20

I always think of people like Owen Jones, a journalist with The Guardian, when I read this sort of thread. He'd be a bloody nightmare to manage.

NT53NJT Tue 09-Jul-19 23:59:28

Firm but fair is the way.
You're not at work to make friends, if there's an issue bring it up with them.

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