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work with the loveliest guy, however....

(20 Posts)
amnotwingingbut Fri 04-Jul-08 23:08:05

I work in a very high pressure corporate environment, where 24x7 is the norm. i have the most wonderful colleague, great fun to be around, very helpful and supportive. Yet, he seems to pick and choose what he does, and will not allow his many outside work activities to be affected by his job, That I would totally admire him for, BUT he is paid for full time, I am paid for part time. I am giving, giving, giving,I have no life outside work and spending less time with the family than I would like. yet seemingly he can do what he likes (I am at least one level his senior, by the way) I can't say too much about what he/I/my boss do, but suspect said boss is bending over backwards to tick certain boxes. I have absolutely nothing against the guy, I love him to bits, but he is working full time, yet seems to be putting in fewer hours than me and I get paid for part-time. Where do I go from here?

deanychip Fri 04-Jul-08 23:11:57

whats you point?
are you pissed off at what he is getting away with OR are you MORE pissed off that you are doing the Lions share?

i think that he is very wise to NOT let work inerfere with his home life, why can you not do the same?
(are you one that cant switch off?)

deanychip Fri 04-Jul-08 23:17:04

please dont think im bieng arsey, im not, i only ask because i work with some one like that who is pleasant blah blah blah BUT does naff all and has recieved promotion and is now applying for further promotion yet he does absolutely nothing out of his way work wise.
I have had to work my arse off for years to get where i am now, yet for some it is handed to them on a plate.

You ask about what you can do, dont think that there is anything. it cant be personal, it is a professional issue, unless you want to issue a formal grievance, then like me you just have to shut up and put up.
sad

amnotwingingbut Fri 04-Jul-08 23:27:18

Hi deanychip, thanks for responding so quickly. My point is that I keep saying to my boss that various commitments are interfering with my home life. She basically says tough shit. When he says it, tho, he gets away with it. Like you say, he is VERY wise not to let work interfere with his home life, I changed jobs for exactly that reason - but our boss LETS him, but not me. Don't think you are being arsey at all, but your second post sums it up. I can't go into too much detail, because if I am recognised I could lose my job. I know probably why he gets away with what he does, he knows the law inside and out. He is wonderful tho. My issue is not with him, more so our boss.

deanychip Fri 04-Jul-08 23:31:15

ah preferntial treatment!
Tricky, either he knows the law well or he is shagging the boss!

Its shitty that it just isnt fair, they just dont play fair do they.
You wanna pick his brains, see what laws he uses to back up his methods, perhaps you could use them.

amnotwingingbut Fri 04-Jul-08 23:38:45

1000% certain he is not shagging the boss. I know precisely which laws he has on his side. My problem is not with him per se - good luck to him. but boss will make allowances for him, but not for me.

lilolilmanchester Sat 05-Jul-08 19:40:34

doesn't sound right to me

micegg Sun 06-Jul-08 13:12:25

I know excatly where you are coming from but to be honest there is not much you can do. I have a friend at work who fiddled the system for years. She had so much time off sick that I worked out that she had worked the same hours as me even though she was FT and I was PT. On top of that she seemed to get every opportunity going. I ha to admit it used to really eat away at me and was doubly difficult as she was and still is a very good friend of mine. However, things have now caught up with her and this year they finally started taking action about the way she works (or doesn't) and her sick time. The only thing I can suggest is that you get on with what you are doing and ignore what your colleague gets up to. I know its hard and its not fair but thats the way it is. Sounds to me as though your work place is not so great even without whats going on with this guy. Perhaps this would be a good time for you to change jobs.

rookiemater Sun 06-Jul-08 19:07:45

amnot, sounds like a bad situation. The thing I'm not understanding, is when you say to your boss about these commitments, are you being asked to work additional hours, or being expected to do travelling that makes it difficult for child care ?

If you are being expected to do that, and he is not, then perhaps you need to stand your ground a bit more. You are p/t and it doesn't sound like your boss is factoring that into the equation.

amnotwingingbut Mon 04-Aug-08 21:12:57

This is going from bad to worse. Boss just tells me it is tough for all of us. But I know my colleague is having an easy ride. I have been in this company SOOOO long, unlike boss and colleague, am same level as my boss and senior to said colleague. Yet still don't know how to deal with it. Well, I do in principle of course, but reality is a little different. If you knew me, you wouldn't believe I am posting this but not sure which way to turn

flowerybeanbag Mon 04-Aug-08 21:21:41

Difficult to advise without being able to understand more about what the reasons are for your boss making these allowances for your colleague - it makes it difficult to advise on an appropriate course of action for you.

Putting that aside, my suggestion would be not to focus on what he's doing or not doing, but on yourself and your own situation. If you feel you are being taken advantage of/working too much for your hours/being expected to do too much or whatever, you need to address that with your boss. Not in the context of complaining about your colleague and how unfair it is. If the situation with your colleague is a genuine anomaly with 'reasons' (however unfair) why it's happening and not being addressed, there might be little you can do about it. But you can address your own situation if you're not happy with it.

I am confused at your last post, you say you are more senior than this person but on the same level as your boss? How are you on the same level as your boss? Surely your boss is more senior than you?

amnotwingingbut Mon 04-Aug-08 21:33:46

Thanks Flowery. In our company, it is possible to be the same level, or even a higher level, to your manager. On basis that managers need people management skills, rather than the professional skills relevant to our industry. Which is fine, infact great, in principle. Until you get an inexperienced manager like mine. I really have to be very careful what I write, because it would be easy for anyone who knows me/my colleague/my boss to work out who we are. I am 99.9% certain there are no reasons why colleague requires adjustments.
So, here's an example: we were on a call with boss last week. Colleague was so overwrought with work, he couldn't handle a deadline so I was asked to step in. Of course I did, we all help each other out. Tried to phone him late afternoon, couldn't et hold of him. When I did eventually (at 6:30, meantime working unpaid overtime) HE HAD BEEN TO THE GYM. After having been at home waiting for the boiler man. And I, at boss's instructions, am helping him while he's apparenlty overworked. Tried to tell her and she thinks I am being a bitch. WTF?

rookiemater Mon 04-Aug-08 22:02:33

Ok amnotwingingbut, it doesn't sound as if your boss has particularly sophisticated management skills. It is absolutely outrageous that you are doing this mans work while he is at the gym. I can sort of see why your boss reacted the way she did, no one likes their judgement to be questioned by their team. If I were her I would also be thinking seriously about the fact that I had to ask a part timer to take over work from a full timer but I suspect she is unable to see past the assessment she has already made of both of you.

If I were you I would firmly but politely refuse to work any additional unpaid overtime on the basis that you have family responsibilities that require you to be at home not working, End of discussion.
That way your colleagues lack of performance ceases to be your problem and remains that of your boss.

lilolilmanchester Mon 04-Aug-08 22:21:31

Sounds perhaps like the fact you are both the same level/grade is a factor here? Perhaps she is trying to prove a point?

indiemummy Mon 04-Aug-08 22:39:24

if you are part time, it sounds like you have too much to do. you need to realign your objectives and delegate / cross-train so that other people in your team take their share of the work too. i have been guilty of the same thing (taking on too much, working from home every evening) and my boss basically said to me - don't be a martyr - if you try to do everything you will be a single point of failure - share out the jobs, forward your phone to someone else's when you're not working, teach your colleagues how to deal with the everyday stuff and when to call you.

the smartest way to work is to give 95%, not 100% which means you're flat out, but 95% so that you're relaxed and within your limits. also, make sure you have time clear every day to deal with things that might crop up, tidy desk, manage emails, etc etc.

it does sound as though your male colleague has a better work-life balance than you - can't you be a bit more like him, turn your phone off and go to the gym for instance?

flowerybeanbag Tue 05-Aug-08 09:40:20

I do find it strange if someone can be on a level below you and be 'managing' you. It's not about having the same professional skills - lots of people successfully manage teams with very different or higher level professional skills than they do, but managing people involves telling them what to do, appraising their work, motivating them to meet targets and taking ultimate responsibility for what they do and don't achieve. Difficult to see how you could do that successfully if you are paid less and have less seniority within an organisation tbh. Doesn't sound as though it's working especially well here either.

However, leaving that aside for a minute, when I said reason, I didn't mean a reason why colleague needed adjustment, I meant reason why it is going on unaddressed. There is (as you have alluded to) a reason why your boss is allowing this to happen, rightly or wrongly, and that must inform your actions. There's always a reason why something's happening and understanding it is very helpful. It's not always the reason that is given or is most apparent, although it may be here.

Part of the reason will be the issues you mentioned, about ticking boxes, knowing the law and all that. Fine. But some of it may be to do with you. Why are you being taken advantage of? Look at your own behaviour and see what you can do, how you can change, to alter your situation.

Whatever boxes your boss is trying to tick by allowing this behaviour from someone else, I can't imagine anything which means you can't challenge the situation. I can't imagine any boxes that need ticking that justify a situation like this with such an impact on the rest of the team.

I think there is probably a combination of factors here, partly to do with boxes that your boss feels need ticking, partly to do with you not taking charge enough of your own situation and being firm enough about your needs, and partly about the insecurities/concerns of your boss.

Think about what you want to achieve and what you can do yourself to achieve it. Do you need to (for example) talk to your colleague 'man to man' and find out what's going on, explain how his behaviour is affecting you? Do you need to speak more firmly with your boss, arrange a review meeting and firmly request in a non-negotiable way some actions to be taken to address the situation? Do you need to speak to other colleagues and find out what they think? Do you need to address your own behaviour so that you are not taken advantage of going forward and be firm about your own priorities?

Could be some or all of these, only you will be able to work out what's most likely to succeed for you.

oops Tue 05-Aug-08 09:46:37

Message withdrawn

wannaBe Tue 05-Aug-08 10:04:17

You are paid to work part time.

So work part time.

I admire anyone who can turn around and not let their job interfere with their life, IMO more people should do this.

But I'm afraid that people who give their lives to their jobs have only themselves to blame when they become put upon because they're always the ones prepared to be there.

Be assertive. "no I cannot work unpaid overtime today as I already have a commitment." then leave. "no I will not cancel the commitment, my hours are from x until x, and while of course I will be flexible when absolutely necessary, I will not allow my job to take over my life."

While you allow this woman to walk all over you, she will.

It is, after all, only a job. If it gets too tough you can always leave and find another one, you wouldn't have the same choice if your family decided they'd had enough of you giving your all to your job to the detriment of time with them.

amnotwingingbut Tue 05-Aug-08 10:37:02

thanks, lots of sound advice. Solution rests with me, tho not an easy one to tackle

tiggerlovestobounce Tue 05-Aug-08 10:41:56

Do you keep a diary of your tasks and hours worked? It might be worth doing this for a while, so that when you do talk to your boss you can evidence your claims.

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