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HR advice sought - role changed without informing me

(3 Posts)
Joeymac Tue 02-Jun-09 21:41:57

Just returned to work on monday to be told by my direct report that she now reports to my manager not me.

She is off on mat leave herself soon and I challenged my manager (who is new to me as old manager also off on mat leave)about this. He said her replacement would again report to him now and not me. He said her role had changed and she was now a 'team' resource rather than specificaly mine (although I do a five day a week job in four days and it had previously been agreed that I needed the direct report to pick up some of the slack plus my area in the team generates the vast majority of the work by the nature of the role).

My issues are:

1) No-one told me of this change when I was off on mat leave. It's written in my role profile that I have a direct report for assistance.
2) My new manager is blethering about matrix management. By this I assume he means that I will dole out and supervise the work to the new recruit (as the curent direct report says he has no idea what she is working on or how to do her job) whilst he actually 'manages' her on paper.
3) He told me when I confronted him that he wasn't bothered about who managed the replacement but when I said Ok then I'll manage them he said no.

Am I being unreasonable to be annoyed? How would you play it. I'm concerned about going to HR about this as don't want to be seen as trouble maker to new boss (and also new director - so much change!).

ABitStretched Wed 03-Jun-09 17:09:43

Hi Joeymac. Your story sounds so similar to the goings on in the company I just left that I checked your profile to see if you work for the same company. I was mixed up in a matrix management scandal incl total change of my job and manager while I was on Mat leave 2 years ago. I'm not in an HR role so I can only advise from my experience. Things that helped me were:
1. Keep a record of everything that seems relevant esp conversations with your manager - you'll need this if it goes further
2. If they have made significant changes to what's expected of you make sure you get written confirmation of their expectations / objectives / targets for you - I have seen your story a few times in the last months end with vague 'underperforming' statements in the hope that the poor target of these tactics finds a different job.
3. I talked to people I could trust.I spoke to a senior manager who I used to work for in a previous role but was outside my department. I also got off the record advice from a friend of a friend in our HR department. But you have to really trust these people and its much easier in a large comoany as mine was.

YANBU to be annoyed as thet def should have discussed this with you before you return. If I was you I'd be saying something along the lines of 'yes I'm happy to do it this way for x months.' Agree indicators of success for the arrangement with your manager. And review again at the proposed time. This important because I've seen matrix management for 2 years - if it works its great but all too often it becomes the blame game.

Sorry if I sound a bit negative. when similar thing happened to me I had an uncomfortable few weeks but it all resolved and I ended up in better position than i wwas before so I'm sure it will all come right in the end.

Joeymac Wed 03-Jun-09 20:45:20

Thanks for your advice. I need to start the diary now of what's happened to date. I dug out my role profile today and it clearly has cited on it reposnsibility for one or two employees along with my other duties.

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