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Work relationships - am getting so upset

(28 Posts)
49ftqueenie Tue 16-May-17 18:53:35

Had a bit of a breakdown at work today. Spoke to my boss who was very positive and supportive. But I'm doing something wrong and would be grateful of any advice? I work in a team of 4. I am paid as the leader with another deputy leader. I'm only temporary in the position and the deputy has far more knowledge about how things are run. I fully respect this and often tell her how valuable I find her input. I am trying to be positive. But I know that she really dislikes me. All I want to do is create a positive working environment. I'm working long hours and want to do the best I can? Any advice would be sorely appreciated!! With the other two members of my team - it feels like they are 'taking sides'. I don't want it to be like this at all. I want us all to be together.

noego Tue 16-May-17 19:07:30

Have a clear the air meeting and tell them how you see the team working. Ask for their input. Be constructive. A team has to function as a team and a team has to have input. A good boss always listens and listens well. Don't be to quick to pacify. listen, sit on it and say you will come back to them when you have weighed everything up. Only listen to evidence not hearsay. People have a habit of embellishing tales in the workplace.

jouu Tue 16-May-17 19:12:49

The fact that you are calling out that "she really dislikes me" tells me that you may be measuring your success at work based on how much people like you.

Let me tell you that frequently, it's those who are respected who are the most successful - not the ones who are liked.

If you show how affected you are by being disliked, people will go out of their way to show their dislike, because they'll know that's how they can manipulate you or remove you from their path.

Focus on the work and getting excellent results. Ask the team how results can be improved. Make decisions that will move the team towards better results, and then assign measurable actions to your team members so that they have to contribute to those results. Document everything and hold people to account.

And don't think about being liked. Be professional, be courteous, and if you don't get that in return, call it out and tell the person you expect better from them.

49ftqueenie Tue 16-May-17 19:16:43

Thank you noego. I like the idea of a clear the air meeting. I tried that a couple of weeks ago - I apologised for being difficult to work with, and that I 'flap' and get anxious. They reassured me - said everything was fine. Then everything was great for the next few days. Now I feel we are back to square 1.

49ftqueenie Tue 16-May-17 19:21:08

Thanks jouu. Thing is I'm not in anyone's path. They all know I am only there until July - yet I do feel undermined. Generally I feel like my team are taking lots of breaks and shirking their responsibilities- yet putting the blame on me when things are difficult.

redexpat Tue 16-May-17 19:23:58

1. Dont apologise.
2. Read nice girls dont get the corner office.

49ftqueenie Tue 16-May-17 19:28:00

In my line of work, I really want to demonstrate that the best way is to be 'nice'. I have worked across the establishment. I work best with members of the team who are dedicated.

Leavesandburies Tue 16-May-17 19:29:16

Please stop trying to be everyone's friend. Offices don't run on emotional heart to hearts. If you are a leader you need to lead. Anything other than that makes your colleagues jobs harder. So work on your leadership. Stop apologising for your shortcomings. And grow a thicker skin. If you do your job well and decisively the relationships will follow.

jouu Tue 16-May-17 19:30:41

Generally I feel like my team are taking lots of breaks and shirking their responsibilities

Well, start tracking their work and holding them to account when their shirking results in a problem. Talk to them in person, but back it all up in writing.

Apologising to your reports for being "difficult to work with", "flapping", "being anxious" etc is not a clear the air meeting. You basically told them that you have no confidence in yourself, so they've gone forward under the assumption that they should not have confidence in you. They likely feel they don't need to work hard for you, because you've already told them that you feel weak/like you can't do the job.

It might be better to accept that it's just going to be tricky until July. Not sure you can come back from the apology that you describe, unless you truly take a scorched earth approach which might backfire anyway.

Have you had assertiveness training at all? You'd benefit from it.

49ftqueenie Tue 16-May-17 19:31:22

I'm not in an office. I work as a teacher.

49ftqueenie Tue 16-May-17 19:34:49

Yes Jouu. That is exactly what has happened. They know I don't have confidence in myself - and I don't. I explained to my manager that I didn't feel right for the position they wanted me to do. But I was persuaded, I accepted and know I feel shit.

49ftqueenie Tue 16-May-17 19:35:56

Now I feel shit!!! I should know my know's from now's.

49ftqueenie Tue 16-May-17 19:39:38

Also not sure why I am using a possessive apostrophe...

Rainybo Tue 16-May-17 19:42:09

You really would benefit from being more assertive. You aren't there to be everyone's friend. I would be questioning why, if the deputy knows so much, she isn't acting up and instead the job went to you.

Don't apologise about yourself to the team, that's very hard to come back from. It's not a popularity contest.

49ftqueenie Tue 16-May-17 19:46:51

Yesterday - me/the children had a great day, because I took half the class to a separate room. I left half the class to the other 3 adults. They did their jobs because I wasn't there?

MudCity Tue 16-May-17 19:59:16

Sounds like you are having a confidence crisis....and I can imagine you are in a difficult situation given your position is only until July. I think that's the issue, to be honest. If you were in the position long term I don't think your colleagues would be shirking but, as they see you as temporary, they perhaps feel they don't have to try.

You are going to need to raise the shirking issue with them at the time they do it...don't wait for a meeting. A quiet word just to set some boundaries should help clarify expectations. Difficult, I know, but you can do this!

DrMorbius Tue 16-May-17 20:05:46

Teachers adult bodies, young adult minds, I have only met two, I would employ in 20 years. A team of four has a leader and a deputy leader. WTF is that all about.

Any advice would be sorely appreciated!! Jack in your leader role, you are not cut out for it.

redexpat Tue 16-May-17 20:06:32

Great post by jouu. I would add that being nice and being assertive arent mutually exclusive. I am almost positive that you are undermining yourself without realising. Please read nice girls dont get the corner office. Be a boss. Listen to some episodes of the guilty feminist.

49ftqueenie Wed 17-May-17 00:11:57

I've read all your replies with interest. I've done a lot of crying this evening. I really don't feel strong enough. I started taking medication a couple of months ago - as I knew I was going to find the job difficult. I've taken over from someone who is now on stress leave.

49ftqueenie Wed 17-May-17 00:13:07

Am feeling incredibly wobbly.

noego Wed 17-May-17 08:26:13

My God that's not right, if you are on AD's to cope with the role and crying at night. You need to step aside for the sake of your MH.
Is the fact that your colleague is off with stress related issues and now you are having them, down to the job or down to the people in the job, or is it something to do with the way the work is delegated?
There has to be a common denominator somewhere.

MudCity Wed 17-May-17 20:35:46

flowers Sounds like a very difficult situation. Can you get more support from your manager OP?

Try not to expect too much of yourself in this job. Sounds like they are going to have one hell of a job filling the position given the history.

Take one day at a time and, if you need to get signed off by your GP, the do but consider asking your manager for help first as they may be able to do something to support you in your role.

Take care.

redexpat Wed 17-May-17 21:16:32

Oh that does sound tricky. Have you had a similar position before or is this your first time being in charge?

49ftqueenie Thu 18-May-17 18:25:14

Thank you for all your comments. I had a great day yesterday, and today was rubbish. I really feel like my team are shirking their responsibilities, complaining and blaming any bad situation on me - or at least that's what happened today. Yesterday I had a different team member - who was supportive.

49ftqueenie Thu 18-May-17 18:26:37

Think is I am trying REALLY hard to make their situation easy. They get their breaks - I don't. I take the majority of the hard work and difficult situations.

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