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how to deal with an office snitch/lying co-worker?


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Old 31st July 2004, 10:36 AM   #1
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how to deal with an office snitch/lying co-worker?

I have some serious co-worker problems I was hoping to get some advice here. I work in a pretty large office and have a great relationship with my boss. Well maybe its a little too great because we have become pretty good friends which sometimes works against me. I think its an abnormal boss/ee relationship but thats just one of my problems. I get special treatment and know that and he openly admits to me but it is to my advantage because when something happens and someone says something about me to him, he tells me. Now this is good and bad because I wind up boiling over certain things and wish to confront at least one person who has deliberately been trying to get me into trouble and I don't know why but I cant really do that because then this person will know he told me what she said and i cant do that to my boss because he would lose the trust in me that i have spent the past couple years building and its a trust he has in no one else there.

the story is condensed here but bottom line is this person at work who doesn't have the same boss as me yet works in my Dept is the office snitch. She watches people and if they do something, no matter how small she rats them out to their supervisor. I don't know what she has to gain from this but it is disturbing. Lately she has been focusing on me in particular for reasons unknown. I have always been nice to her (despite the fact I know what she does and I really don't like her a bit). For instance one day she came to me and asked me to do someone else's work and I had been out and my stuff had piled up. I asked her what it was to see how important it was and determined it was nothing that couldn't be given to someone else or have waited till I was done my backlog. I said to her I didn't wanna do it, she should let this person do her own work because mine is really backed up. I kind of felt bad and after a minute said fine, just give it to me I will do it and I did and that was that...(keep in mind I don't work for her, she isn't my boss but thinks she runs the whole Dept) Well the next day my boss calls me in and asks me what happened yesterday? In my mind nothing happened and I did not know what he was talking about. He said what happened with this person? He proceeded to tell me that she told him she asked me to do something and I said to her I am not F**king doing that on the floor in front of everyone. I NEVER said that. she twisted it all around. On top of it she told him I didn't do what she asked knowing full well that I did do it! I was boiling...I think her main goal was for him to write me up for insubordination or something. I asked him to choose who he believed and of course he said he believed me. I said well you should because I would never use that language out on the floor...I think it bothered her that there was no repercussions to me because of this incident because she remarked to one of my friends (who she stupidly told about this not realizing she would tell me) oh I guess he (my boss) didn't believe me...You got that right sister he didn't f**king believe you because he knows me better than that and knows I wouldn't lie to him! She has even made references that she heard I am having an affair with my boss ( I am NOT) and this rumor spread all over the place and I am not so sure she is not the one who started it all but that is besides the point.

Then this week we had another issue...I had an issue at work unrelated to any of this stuff and basically i was told I did something wrong when I didn't and I got really upset about it but decided it wasn't worth it for me to stress over it...Well...my boss was out the day after this episode and I was talking quietly to another co-worker about what had happened the day before . Low and behold the next day when he came in she drags my boss aside and tells him I was whispering to this person which he told me . I thought what the hell is this? She is watching who I am talking to now and reporting my every move to him ? This is ridiculous...Since she is in charge of delegating certain things I had asked to be switched to something else work-wise and she told my boss i said I wanted to do something that I never said either..Like she keeps saying stuff to him about me that isn't true. I just dont understand this. My boss said perhaps she is jealous of you because she thinks you are smarter than she is. I don't know if I am buying that ( i know I'm smarter) but there is something more going on here that I cannot figure out. I know its not a case of her having a thing for him but she knows my boss does not like her yet loves me and I think maybe that has something to do with this whole thing. There have been various other things but you get the picture..

I want to take action against her for constantly harassing me in her own way but I am unsure how to do that without implicating my boss for having told me things that she said about me. I have thought about talking to her super and asking him to speak to her about this because if I approach her myself I will lose my mind and then I will really get myself into trouble so I cant do it alone. I don't necessarily want her boss to say that its me but I just want him to address her constant narking out of people (me in particular) and her lying. It is really getting to me big time and creating an unpleasant environment. If all else fails I am thinking about going to human resources and filing a harassment thing against her because I feel she is doing this to me . I don't know if this is something that is even doable but I know something has to be done about this person. Any ideas?
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Old 31st July 2004, 12:58 PM   #2
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Leave it alone. Your boss is a very smart man. When someone accuses somebody, he speaks to the accused and asks the truth. He will find out not only from you but from others that this person is a liar and so he'll stop believing her. He is also wise to not immediately condemn her and get rid of her. He may be giving her chances to realize the error of her ways and change. She is making it unpleasant, but know that every time she spreads another lie or rumour, she's pounding another nail into her own coffin.

Next time she says anything untrue about you to your face, just look her straight in the eye and say, calmly, 'you know that is not true'. Be calm and be cool. Refuse to let her upset you. She is in the wrong and so she's the one who should be feeling uncomfortable. Don't worry, she won't last much longer if she keeps this up.
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Old 31st July 2004, 1:16 PM   #3
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I don't think you have to worry about being insubordinate unless somehow this woman is supposed to provide you work direction.

Your boss will talk to her boss if she continues to falsely accuse people in your department. You just need to sit tight. One thing I would NOT do is talk about her to any of your coworkers. Vent here on LS, vent to your friends outside work, to Mom, whoever but keep it out of the workplace. You don't know how it might get back to her, to her boss, to YOUR boss. If she sees that she's having no effect on you, she may be less likely to try to stir up trouble.

I agree with moimeme - she won't last much longer if she keeps this up. Hang in there.
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Old 31st July 2004, 1:59 PM   #4
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I agree with moimeme and brashgirl. No matter what happens don't lose your cool.
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Old 31st July 2004, 2:18 PM   #5
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People like that can't handle confrontation. The next time you have ANY dealings with her, pull out a tape recorder. I'm serious. Pull it out, and look her in the eye and state "I can't trust you to tell the truth to ANYONE about any dealings we have, so I'm recording this conversation. That way, there will be NO misunderstandings"

Seriously. Go buy one, right now.
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Old 31st July 2004, 2:25 PM   #6
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That would be a huge mistake.
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Old 31st July 2004, 10:41 PM   #7
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Quote:
Originally posted by Mr Spock
The next time you have ANY dealings with her, pull out a tape recorder. I'm serious. Pull it out, and look her in the eye and state "I can't trust you to tell the truth to ANYONE about any dealings we have, so I'm recording this conversation. That way, there will be NO misunderstandings"
Sounds like fun in theory but in many states in the US, the only way you can record a conversation legally is if both parties agree. Not likely she'll agree to being tape-recorded.

Plus, it makes momto3 look like a paranoid nut-job in my opinion. It is kind of a fun fantasy though to imagine her jaw dropping...
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Old 2nd August 2004, 12:42 PM   #8
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Quote:
Originally posted by brashgal
Sounds like fun in theory but in many states in the US, the only way you can record a conversation legally is if both parties agree. Not likely she'll agree to being tape-recorded.

Plus, it makes momto3 look like a paranoid nut-job in my opinion. It is kind of a fun fantasy though to imagine her jaw dropping...
Actually, as long as one person involved in the conversation knows its beind taped, its completely legal, even in a court of law. You dont even have to tell them you are recording it (works for phone calls as well). I have been a police officer for 12 years, so Im familiar with the issue.

It only gets tricky if you are tape recording people having a conversation and you are not part of it.
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Old 2nd August 2004, 5:05 PM   #9
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You've been a law officer in all 50 states?

My experience is primarily with business telephone conversations and I know that we can record them in Texas (if both parties are in Texas) but not in many other states unless the person we are speaking with agrees to be recorded.
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Old 2nd August 2004, 5:09 PM   #10
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The point was not to record her conversation but to force her to be fully honest in her office dealings. Eventually, this woman's behaviour will undermine her authority, respect and job performance at the office. If enough people repeat the same thing eventually it becomes the "truth"

It was just something fun to show the woman that you KNOW she's a terrible bitch but without actually saying it.
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Old 2nd August 2004, 5:13 PM   #11
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You could probably have the same success by dealing with her ONLY with others around to witness the conversation (and preferably those who are not HER allies).
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Old 2nd August 2004, 9:30 PM   #12
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Well, yes-I suppose I was going for glory on that one.
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Old 3rd August 2004, 1:08 AM   #13
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update

Thanks guys for your responses. Just to update I did speak with my boss about this again today. I got assurance from him that he does in fact believe me(which I already knew) and he heard from a few others today about her tactics and he fully realizes this is a problem. I asked him should I confront her boss and he suggested that someone else should do it instead of me and he suggested who he feels should be the one to go to her boss with regards to this. Why he just doesnt do it himself I dont know but my thinking is he doesnt want to be involved and he thinks if her peers versus a supervisor all have similar things to say, it will seem more credible. SO I am going to speak with someone tomorrow whom he suggested to me about it and see if she wont speak to this girls boss (they both work for the same person) I dont know, the whole thing seems strange but I think my boss just doesnt want me going to him and shooting off my mouth and getting myself into trouble, in a way I think he is looking out for me because he cares. I will keep you posted..Oh by the way I also found out today that this problem girl is also an alcoholic altho she never is drunk at work and is quite capable mind you, but I think maybe it accounts for some of her irrational behavior? Dont know
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Old 3rd August 2004, 10:08 AM   #14
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Quote:
Originally posted by brashgal
You've been a law officer in all 50 states?

My experience is primarily with business telephone conversations and I know that we can record them in Texas (if both parties are in Texas) but not in many other states unless the person we are speaking with agrees to be recorded.
This has to do with constitutional law, so yes, it applies to all fifty states. There is a significant difference between recording a phone conversation that YOU are involved in and one that involves OTHERS.

If you are an individual participating in a conversation, you can record it without the other person knowing about it in any state. How do you think we record undercover situations and submit them to the prosecuting attorney?
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Old 3rd August 2004, 11:05 AM   #15
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All I know is, when we record calls at work we must inform the other party that they are being recorded. You hear the message that you may be recorded when you call a lot of customer help lines as well. Surprising that businesses would have fewer rights in this arena than private individuals but you may be right.

Whipping out the tape recorder in the workplace could be construed as harassment. There have to be better ways to diffuse the situation.
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