A bit stressed out...

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A bit stressed out...

Postby CrystalStarr » Tue Jan 26, 2010 10:39 pm

Hi everyone, I just wanted to get a few opinions on things and also have a bit of a vent.

Basically, I have recently been promoted after my boss retired. I am now in charge of a small department with a mixture of ages. I am constantly having trouble with one of the older members of my department (he's about 35 years older than me). After I took over, a lot of changes have been put in place (basically everything has become more modernised, as my old boss was a bit 'set in his ways'). This particular guy, I feel, is having trouble with these changes. I spend time to talk things though with him about new procedures, I've even sat with him a couple of times and watched him go through them himself. I type him up numerous info sheets (which I don't really need to do for anyone else) so he has all the info he needs in front of him as well. Now my problem is, after spending my time doing this, he called my boss (my higher-up boss) into our office today and got him to explain to him the EXACT SAME THINGS as I've been trying to go through with him for the past month AND when my boss asked him if he'd done this before he said no!!!! Oh my god, I was livid. Seriously, I've spent so much time going through stuff with him, and told him if he needs help to come ask me. Everybody else in my department knows what to do, and it just looks like I'm not doing my job properly, or not capable of doing it properly. It's just like he's trying to undermine me all the time.

He's constantly late, which I ask him not to do, and never rings in, he complains about almost EVERY piece of work I give him, saying it's rubbish, and thinks it is not what his job is (It is - and no-one else but him complains). I almost lost my temper with him today as I gave him something to do, explained everything he needed to do (for like the MILLIONTH TIME), asked him if he had any questions, then asked if he was alright, and he goes 'no it's not alright actually'. So, I was already stressed for his earlier undermining of me and just went 'why? why is it not alright?' in kinda a snappy tone - he proper winds me up. And he was all like 'we shouldn't be doing this, it's a load of (the 's' word). So, I basically told him we HAVE to do it, and there's nothing I can do about it. What I really wanted to say was 'shut the hell up and get on with your bloomin' work!!!' He also takes the longest to do any work I give him, and there are frequently mistakes with what he does, which then get passed back to me and I have to take the flak for. When I highlight these errors to him he sorta shrugs and says' oh haven't people got anything better to do'.

I'm going to go insane, I tell you. The thing is it is only him that's a problem - everyone else is fine and does their work, and does what they're told, no complaints. I get the feeling he doesn't listen to me cos I'm younger than him. I'm very cautious not to patronise him, but he just does not do what he's told!!!?!! My boss sorta understands what he's like, and often asks me how he's getting on and stuff. The things is, if I keep mentioning incidents of his behaviour to my boss it might look like I can't do this new job (when I CAN!) or my boss might have words with this particular guy and he'll know it was me that's been complaining about him and I know for sure he would be really funny with me then.

I'm not sure how I can deal with this guy as he seriously never listens to what I say. It's driving me mad and I used to really enjoy my job, but he is just making it seem really difficult. How do you deal with someone like this?
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Re: A bit stressed out...

Postby Skarlet » Tue Jan 26, 2010 10:48 pm

Surely the fact that he is being late, is being disruptive and difficult is enough to put him on review? Instead of you constantly dealing with it, could you get him to shadow one of the other people- so he can learn, or could you set up a buddying system? Does your company have personal development strategies- could you not arrange a meeting and sit down with him, and go through his problems?
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Re: A bit stressed out...

Postby CrystalStarr » Tue Jan 26, 2010 10:57 pm

Thank you for the reply Skarlet and for the vaired ideas.

He's so used to working almost 10 years with the boss that retired that he seems to have become set in his ways too. I have mentioned to my boss about his lateness, and my higher boss is aware of him being disruptive (as he's gone over to him once and slammed some work on his desk and told him to get someone else to do it - this was before I was in charge). They don't seem to say anything to him, and I think it's probably cos of his age and he's used to doing things the old school way.

He does sit next to another guy who occasionally helps him - but I might take your advice and suggest that he watches how this guy does things a few times, or when he's stuck. The thing is, I get the impression he thinks he's retiring in another 2-3 years and so doesn't really care about anything at all.

I also like your idea about arranging a meeting with him and if he carries on in this manner I might suggest it and then see what aspects we can work on.
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Re: A bit stressed out...

Postby Skarlet » Wed Jan 27, 2010 9:44 am

Glad they were helpful. I am not a manager, but I have seen these strategies used with good effect at my workplaces. Do you have a HR dept, could you not check their policies, see if there is anything to help you with him?
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Re: A bit stressed out...

Postby Bel Bel » Mon Feb 01, 2010 3:58 pm

Start a log of his tiem keeping and take it to your boss with a view to a disiplinary
It will cause bad moral amongst others if he is allowed to get away with things
Also do the same with his attitude and work. Keep separate shedules of bad behaviour and wrong work
He should not be allowed to talk to you the way he is and you have to know what you are allowed to do about it
I would always tell him not to talk to you in a distrespectful manner and say it loudly and in front of people
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Re: A bit stressed out...

Postby CrystalStarr » Mon Feb 01, 2010 10:46 pm

Thank you Bel Bel.

I am going to start writing his times in my work diary, as I've now spoken to my boss and he's asked me to monitor the person in question and it's a good idea to keep records - I think I shall start doing this for definite.

He was still grumpy today and I managed to tell him in a calm but stern manner to do his work, and then he was quiet for the rest of the day, which was a small victory.

The thing is, he has a daughter my age and he would be appalled if anyone spoke to her in the manner he speaks to me at times. And, yes, I'm worried for the morale of the others as they are hard workers and always in on time, and never complain, and I don't want it to look like I'm being overly lenient with him.

I think it's just that the other boss we had let him get away with these things so he thinks he can keep doing it, but I feel like he's taking the mick, big time.

We do have a HR department and I was thinking of speaking to them too, just to get some information as to what exactly my job role entails and what I'm supposed to be dealing with - that sort of thing - as I seriously haven't really been told what I'm allowed/not allowed to say to people. It's all a bit random.
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Re: A bit stressed out...

Postby Bel Bel » Tue Feb 02, 2010 11:35 am

I agree with going to HR
You are either the boss or you are not and that means you need to able to discipline people and take charge or people will take the mike because they know they can
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Re: A bit stressed out...

Postby whoopsie » Wed Feb 03, 2010 11:57 pm

Congratulations on your promotion!
I wouldn't worry about being ageist or anything, cos you're not being. It's not like you're making it up. Everyone else has had to deal with the changes, so why can't he? I agree with the others, keep records and look to possibly put him on review.
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