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Being managed out of my job - what can I do?

(10 Posts)
feelingfedup Thu 18-Sep-08 11:54:02

Had great manager for 2 years, got great appraisal reports.

Dept re-organised 6 months ago, my job changed and new manager bought in.

New manager very difficult, arrogant verging on bullying, micromanager, workaholic, vague about what he wants, never available to staff, always canx 121s, texting on blackberry at staff meetings instead of listening, or constantly looking at watch.

He is very sneaky and manipulative - telling you he wants A, but telling others he asked for B, so when you produce A you look stuipd/silly/like you are not doing your job.

I challenged some of his behaviour and now new manager is saying I'm not doing my job properly.

He gave a specific example of one very small bit of work which I admit was not great, but it was poor because he kept changing his mind about what he wanted (he does this all the time).

I've asked him to tell me what it is that I need to do and what support he will give me. He has said it is not a question of support and that I am capable of doing the job!

HR have said they will only get involved if it becomes formal, and at the moment it is informal.

There is no recognised union (although I am a union member)

I don't want to be in meetings alone with him anymore as he will come out with a different version of events than mine. ie. he will say he asked me to do a, but he will ask me to do b just to make me look silly.

What should I do?

feelingfedup Thu 18-Sep-08 11:55:11

Should read - he said I am not capable of doing the job.

titchy Thu 18-Sep-08 11:59:44

You need to log everything he asks you to do, by when he wants it done and his reaction. You also need to confirm EVERYTHING he asks you to do in writing - by email prob. easiest. So if he says please do X jusy a quick email saying 'To confirm our conversation you need X doing by Y Date. If this is not the case please can you let me know by the end of today. I see no problem with achieving this task'.

word it better than that obviously but you have to force him to be specific and not give him the opportunity to turn it around.

flowerybeanbag Thu 18-Sep-08 12:13:04

It sounds a little bit premature to say you are being 'managed out of your job', but certainly an unpleasant and difficult situation.

Does this manager behave this way only to you or to others as well?

If he has said you are not capable of doing your job, what is actually happening about that iyswim? Therefore what? Is he proposing to start disciplinary action against you? Is there a formal performance management procedure at your work, is that being used?

Or is he just being a bully and saying a load of rubbish to make you feel crap?

Agree with titchy. Make sure you take lots of notes always when meeting with him/talking to him, and confirm everything by email afterwards.

Don't ask him what support he will give you. Identify exactly what support you need, why you need it and specifically request it. Then if later there is any formal action against you and you have asked for specific support and not received it, you're in a better position.

If he makes any complaint about your work make sure he gives you specific examples each time.

Are HR not prepared to have an informal chat with you? Usually they would rather these problems were solved without people having to resort to the formal grievance process so they ought to be able to listen to your woes and give you some tips on how to handle this person to make your life a bit easier.

You say you challenged some of his behaviour, but have you met with him, pointed out all the things he is doing, explained how those things are unhelpful, and requested a commitment from him to (say) not cancel any more meetings, not bring his phone to meetings, etc etc, so that if you have to take it further, you have proof that you made every attempt to address these problems first without using the grievance process, made sure he was aware of the things he was doing wrong, and got his commitment to change, but he still didn't do so.

flowerybeanbag Thu 18-Sep-08 12:14:12

Have you got any other reason to think you might be being 'managed out?'

dilbertina Thu 18-Sep-08 12:18:26

Well if all fails I guess YOU could make it formal by lodging a formal complaint to HR...personally I would try everything else first though...

feelingfedup Thu 18-Sep-08 13:21:12

Titcy - will start to keep records and document/confirm everything he asks me to do.

Flowery - yes he is a pain to everyone, makes everyone in the team feel crap, but only 1 other person (apart from me) feels strong/brave enough to confront him.

I don't know what he is proposing to do - we do have a formal process, he has not said he is going to do it, but I think he will - eventually.

The problem with me asking for support is that I reject the 'supposed' weaknesses. Why should I go on a course to re-learn x, when I have been doing x for most of my career and never had any complaints about it before.

Yes, I did tell him how unhelpful his behaviour was - canx meetings, being vague and so on. I did this verbally, so I don't have a written record, and it was after I challenged him that he started saying I was not up to the job.

His complaint about my work also coincided with my joining the union, i.e. just after he found out I had joined the union. Maybe that wound him up?

When I was keeping my mouth shut, and not a member of the union, my work was (apparently) fine.

I know I am being managed out as he has even told me who he wants to employ instead of me! Not actual names but what grades and types of staff he would use my salary on.

Will go back to HR for an informal chat.

flowerybeanbag Thu 18-Sep-08 13:42:28

Ok then, that comment about who he would employ is a bit more definite, and extremely stupid of him.

Do try HR again as well as keeping all the notes. You may well need to bring a formal grievance at some point, but if this is going on, HR will want a heads up and will want to prevent a grievance if possible. Some of the behaviour/comments you mentioned will get them a bit panicky as well, and therefore more inclined to take action their end. If you are being bullied because you have joined a union, that's illegal and discriminatory, if he is trying to manage you out and being clear that he doesn't want you there and wants someone different, that's dodgy as well, could be constructive dismissal, so HR ought to be concerned.

It's fine to reject your supposed weaknesses, if you make sure he backs up any complaint about you with specific examples of where you have done something wrong, and in turn make sure you have plenty of examples of you doing things right.

It's a pain, but doing all that will make any kind of formal disciplinary or performance management action by him extremely difficult.

feelingfedup Thu 18-Sep-08 15:12:53

I get the horrible feeling he has done this to staff before (elsewhere as he is new to our company). He has ambushed me a couple of times - asked me for something which I delivered - not mentioned it was not what he wanted/changed his mind and waited till we were in meetings with more senior people to criticise what I had done.

Thinking back - he did it so smoothly, he has probably done it before.

I told him I felt ambushed - and he promptly did it again.

Also mentioned to his boss that since new manager arrived we have been using a lot more consultants than previously, and that all consultants are 'old' mates of the new manager.

I suggested that our regular suppliers for these services might be a bit miffed and it might look a bit unfair.

New managers boss thought all this was fine, but I expect he told new manager what I said, making me even more unpopular.

And now new manager wants to replace me with said consultants.

flowerybeanbag Thu 18-Sep-08 15:35:25

He sounds like a nasty piece of work really!

Let us know how you get on with HR and keeping more notes, hope things get better.

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