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Co-Worker Problem, What do you guys think?


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Old 22nd February 2019, 5:50 PM   #1
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Co-Worker Problem, What do you guys think?

I have been working by my current employer for about 5 and half years now.
I have a very good reputation at work, everybody praises my work ethic and I am the Go-To guy to get things done.
In 2017, my Boss at that time hired a temporary worker to help me with the work.

The temporary female worker she hired, was very incompetent, following is the list of the things just on the top of my head.

-She always shows up at work late
-She never gets the work done and spends too much time being idle
-When you correct her mistakes, she goes ballistic and puts the fault on the other person
-She's always sick when it comes to Months Closing

The work ethic and poor performance in general, was causing me a lot of problem and this escalated between a month, so I talked to my superior and said that let's give her one more month and see what happens.

During the next month, she become more chaotic, started picking up fights with me, did not do the things she was appointed to, so basically she was in the discussion of being fired. Now my superior during that time left the company and the new superior joined in, so basically things went on like this for 2 more months, then I passed on the information to the new superior regarding her performance, since he's a new superior, instead of firing her, she took her out from my department and placed her in a different department, but she still sits a few inches away from me.

Now although this wasn't the decision I wanted him to take, I was still glad that she's out of my department. She's basically doing the same stuff there again, but nobody is complaining from their department, so I leave it at being their problem.

Now the current situation is, she is polluting the team-work by passing on bad rumours about be to other departments, basically she's on a revenge and trying to damage my reputation as much as she can. Just yesterday a woman from a different department to mine to inquire about something (who previously i had good normal relationships with) and started saying the following:

-You know (my name), i don't think we can work together (I answered to her : why is that?)
-I don't like the way you treat your co-workers in your department (I said: okay, good to know)
-You know I am a person who retaliates back if you do stuff to me (I said: Okay)

and then she left, then it just came to my mind, why does she think that she can't work with me, when she haven't worked with me at all, how can she come to that conclusion on her own, then it finally hit me, that she has been doing breaks with that other girl, during lunch breaks they are together, so basically she has been bad mouthing to her about me, I am actually surprised that she believed him too.

My new superior knows about her too, he doesn't like her either, i wrote him an E-Mail, because I couldn't stand this type of bullying, I told him that I previously wrote an E-mail regarding her trying to mix herself in my department and now she has extended her actions by passing rumours and trying to break the spirit of my department by doing such actions and told him the story about the woman that came to me from my department. In the end I wrote, if this happens one more time, I am personally going to stand up, go to her and give her a proper piece of my mind, I was surprised that my superior said the following "Yes I agree, you should do that, she needs it".

I thought to myself, is he scared of her? He's our superior / manager, why doesn't he say that to her.

She doesn't have a good reputation in general, many people know about it, but of course there are who fall prey to her false stories, which can't be helped.

Regardless, what do you guys think is the best course to take here?

P.S Don't tell me to go the HR and explain the problem there, because it doesn't matter in which country you live in, the HR is always the same, their interest doesn't lye with the employee but the employer's best interest.

So what would would you guys suggest is the best course here and the feedback on the whole scenario?

Thank you for your help in advance.
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Old 22nd February 2019, 6:01 PM   #2
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Your superiors are too weak to take action. You can't fix that.

Stay as far away from her as possible. At some point if given enough rope she'll hang herself.
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Old 22nd February 2019, 6:08 PM   #3
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I'd document everything & start looking for another job. Let your performance speak for you.
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Old 22nd February 2019, 6:37 PM   #4
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Well, your new superior needs to be told that it undermines and demoralizes good employees when bad ones recieve good or better treatment and compensation for doing a bad job as well as being toxic in the workplace.

I would suggest you put this in writing, and let your superior know you'll go yet further up the ladder if she does nothing. Or if you can go up the ladder over her head, do it. You might at least copy HR. HR might tell them to get rid of her.
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Old 22nd February 2019, 6:48 PM   #5
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you could give her a piece of your mind, but do not be too fiery, too scary... tell her you were glad to see the back of her


maintain a face of pleasant charm, be breezy, be unlike the picture she is painting of you, protect yourself
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Old 23rd February 2019, 12:04 AM   #6
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Originally Posted by Holmes85 View Post
P.S Don't tell me to go the HR and explain the problem there, because it doesn't matter in which country you live in, the HR is always the same, their interest doesn't lye with the employee but the employer's best interest.
Actually, the focus of all departments in a company lie with the employer's best interest, that's how business works.

The idea behind reporting the issue to HR is to establish an official record, useful in current and future proceedings. Were I your boss and you talked to me about her, looking at the trail of any incident or disciplinary reports would be one of the first things I'd do.

So yes, write it down, but turn it in...

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Old 23rd February 2019, 7:06 AM   #7
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I have already turned in 2 letters to my superior, it is well documented and most people know about it too, I also have connections up the ladder, I also have good relationship with the CFO, so the next up in ladder is him before going to the HR.

Basically my new superior has no balls, he knows everything, but he's too afraid to do anything. Which is kinda wrong, because he is the Manager of both of our departments. I am actually surprised that she hasn't been fired already.

I have a 1 on 1 meeting with the CFO regarding my future in the company, I think it would be best to get him up to speed on this topic as well, otherwise the options are clear, my performance speaks for itself and I should not have a problem finding a similar job again.

The only thing in my way is the 5.5 years that I have invested in here, basically I would have to start from a scratch in the new company, but thats about it.
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Old 23rd February 2019, 9:04 AM   #8
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If I was your manager, I would not just take your word for it. I would set up a meeting with you, her and someone from HR and calmly get all sides of the story. Then we would come up with an action plan going forward. This would probably be enough to scare her off.
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Old 23rd February 2019, 11:19 AM   #9
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Originally Posted by Holmes85 View Post
I have a 1 on 1 meeting with the CFO regarding my future in the company, I think it would be best to get him up to speed on this topic as well
Might be a mistake to mix those two topics at a meeting with a department head...

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Old 23rd February 2019, 3:38 PM   #10
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So what would would you guys suggest is the best course here and the feedback on the whole scenario?
Keep on giving your absolute best to doing your own job. Do NOTHING about the ugly lies this chick - or her "new best friend" - is spreading around about you. The people who know you / have worked with you on an ongoing basis, already know what the deal is - about your professionalism and the quality of your work. She has already ruined her own reputation. Let her dig her own grave. You just make sure your own "house is in order." Rest on your own reputation which you've already established.

Quote:
Originally Posted by Holmes85 View Post
P.S Don't tell me to go the HR and explain the problem there, because it doesn't matter in which country you live in, the HR is always the same, their interest doesn't lye with the employee but the employer's best interest.
You are correct here. HR protects the company, not the employee. If they come to you, tell them the truth. Otherwise, don't engage them.
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Old 23rd February 2019, 6:19 PM   #11
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You know (my name), i don't think we can work together (I answered to her : why is that?)
-I don't like the way you treat your co-workers in your department (I said: okay, good to know)
-You know I am a person who retaliates back if you do stuff to me (I said: Okay)
You may think you have good reason to assume that she is backstabbing you, however, you don't actually have any proof that it was her, because you didn't confirm it with the person you were talking to.

When she said, “I don't like the way you treat your co-workers in your department”, you didn't ask her to clarify what she meant or give you any examples or attempt to fix it. You just said, “Good to know”, which basically accepting that whatever the reason she gave was justified.

Personally, I think it was a mistake to not politely question her more on where this is all coming from. Does she have another (unrelated) issue with you that you aren't even aware of?

Is it possible other staff were watching the previous situation unfold and thought you were being too hard on the woman who left your team? Are you tough and have high expectations of all your co-workers, and does it show?

After all, she did say she didn't like the way you treat your co-workers (not just her). You may have unknowingly tarnished your own reputation by your actions, whether you were justified or not.

Furthermore, instead of figuring out a way to manage the situation yourself and improve your reputation in the eyes of your co-workers, you went running to the boss to complain and threaten to give this woman a piece of your mind if anything else happens, which is only going to reinforce to everyone that you are not a nice person and destroy your reputation further in the process.

Your new superior is clearly too inexperienced to deal with any of this, and is basically encouraging you to dig your own grave so he doesn't have to deal with any of this. The reality is that management tend to hate having to get involved in these sorts of issues. It is always in your best interests to try and handle things like this first, before escalating it.

I strongly advise you to take a step back and calmly think of what you can do to fix this situation. This will showcase your maturity, ability to problem solve, and most importantly salvage your work reputation. Clearly there are working relationships that need to be mended (more than just the one you no longer work with).

Whether you are willing to admit it to yourself or not, you probably have some ownership in this. It could be very enlightening to go back in your mind and think about things you have said and done at work, either to her or someone else, and consider how it may have come across to them, or others watching.

Sometimes we don't really stop to think about how our actions and behavior might be interpreted by others, but when it gets to a point where there is a clear problem (and someone is even admitting to you that they don't like the way you treat other people), then you need to see if there is any validity in that statement. Is there something you could do differently?

*Is my tone too harsh?
*Am I too impatient
*Do I come across passive aggressive?
*Am I too confrontational?

It can be tough on the ego initially, but in the bigger picture, it can be a very valuable experience for personal growth.

If you value a pleasant working environment and a good reputation at work then you have to approach this in a polite and open way. It is important to focus on finding a way to make things better, not worse.

Please do not go after this woman in the heat of the moment. I know it is tempting, but don't do it. There is another way.

Good luck.
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Old 24th February 2019, 6:07 AM   #12
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I think Openbook summed it up the best.

Scarlett.O'Hara,

Thank you for taking the time and the long post.

I believe she has an ego problem. Every time when I corrected her and told her how to do a certain thing correct, she just went ballistic at me, which made me question, she doesn't want the input and she's doing the work wrong and I am the one in the end who has to clean the whole mess, so eventually I had a put a stop to this.

My manager is very weak and inexperienced about the whole thing, but he knows to take me seriously, because I have a good reputation and also a very good profile with the CFO, whose his boss.

The woman that came to me, knows me for about 3 years, I am her go-to guy to get things done, that is why it was surprising for me to see how she reacted, regardless you can't help someone who is fooled this easily.

But like open book wrote above, my reputation speaks for itself, basically she's digging her own grave and it shows in her actions.

She is literally a cheap person, just this week when most people were gone from the office, she started to bag fruits in her own bag, till she saw me entering the break room and seeing it, then she got red and said "food for me for later", I smiled at her, poured coffee and went away.

I think the best way in such situation is a mix between, don't react to any of it or let her know enough firmly when she gets out of line, in my experience, you don't applaud the bad worker / low-performer and make them motivated to destroy the spirit of the team by spreading rumours, you fire them.
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