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Question
Posted by: Hannelie | 2012/10/04

Office Politics

Hi, I''m so fed up with the office politics that I would surely like to be booked off for a while. I am Bipolar, but I don''t think it has much significance here. Everyone in the office is possessive about their projects. Even if I am the back up for them and has been delegated 4 clients. My colleague who thinks she is in charge of me refuses to share information, she''s as vague as she can possibly be and interferes with my clients. She knows them well because I was sick during the start up. The clients still think it is acceptable to call her. I don''t mind, its less worries for me. But then the client comes back to me when they get no joy out of her and tells me blatantly that my colleague promised something and they want to know if I can assist. It frustrates me that they second guess me and then phone her.
My biggest problem is that we work with Project Managers and Leads from other countries. They were very happy with me and always complimented me on my hard work and that I''m detail orientated. Last week I could not get the correct forms to be used and it was back and forth between me and the Lead. I eventually phoned her and the moment she saw it was me calling she was so glad I phoned because she has several issues with South Africa and continued to trash my colleague who is the assistant on the project doing all the uploading of documents on our secure website. She said she can''t believe the assistant has any experience , questioned why she was senior for her position because since 2011 they have been struggling with us since last year. I only actually came on board since July. They know I have no time to assist. They told me the assistant doesn''t answer emails. I kept on saying it was a communication problem because the person who promoted herself to a Lead position maybe didn''t provide all the documentation to the assistant. In my opinion the ''lead'' is not providing the documentation to the assistant and thereby sabotaging me and her. Maybe not so much the assistant, but she''s vague and unorganized. After my call, in which I found out SA has been using the wrong templates I walked straight to my Country Manager and told her everything that is being said about our office. I felt that the outburst was uncalled for and I wanted to protect the assistant who''s performance was questioned. My manager sent a strongly worded mail to the Project Manage and copied in the whole senior team overseas. On Monday I needed some assistance and the assistant was extremely rude and unhelpful. I was out of office from Monday and just checked with the Country Manager what was said because the assistant seemed hostile towards me, which was concerning me because we got along great. My suspicion is that the issue was dealt with incorrectly and I know my name was mentioned. Now the assistant, her manager, my lead and PM is angry with me. I just reported the details of the phonecall to my manager, not to the assistant because I thought my manager could be more diplomatic than I was. She says I did the right thing reporting it to her. Now 3 people is upset with me and I just escalated the matter to the appropriate person. I used to get positive comments on all my reports, the lead was always helpful. Suddenly everyone treats me like a dog (don''t know if this is the correct expression). How do I address this issue. I would rather put in unpaid leave then go to the office with the hostile enviroment. Just because I involved my manager that our office is being trashed, probably for no good reason. However I noticed a lot of mistakes the assistant made. But we are all human, I also make mistakes. Now the assistant is going out of her way to make me look bad. I hate it when people can''t take critism positively and remain professional. I have a client who hates my guts because they prefer my other colleague but I know they arel not above board. I still remain professional even if they report me to my manager, because I know I''m doing my job. Is there maybe truth in the concerns and the assistant feels threatened. I think that might be the problem.
I can''t face going to the office.

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Our expert says:
Expert ImageCyberShrink

Maybe it'd be productive if companies recognized a value in allowing people a limited amount of Time-Out without having to claim to be ill to get it. Sometimes nasty situations in the office make us really want time outside of them.
But it can easily become evasion, and avoids trying to solve the problems, which HR people are supposed to be eager to do.
Its not necessarly wrong if people are protective about their projects - its HOW they are protective, and how protective they are !
From the sound of it, you yourself are protective of your clients and projects, and understandably so.
If your overseas client has been having consistent problems with the assistant and/or lead - why has she not reported this in writing, to you and perhaps your superiors ?
If you acted properly in reporting the complaints to your manager, report to her also the uinpleasant responses you feel you are receiving, as this may help her to try to put it right.
Have you discussed with the assistant, for instance, what the complaints were that you received, and why you handled it the way you did, in main to try to protect her ? If she is making mistakes, offer to help her avoid such mistakes.
But not going to the office isn't any solution, is it ? It'll only make it easier for people to get resentful and stir trouble without you being able to deal with it appropriately.

The information provided does not constitute a diagnosis of your condition. You should consult a medical practitioner or other appropriate health care professional for a physical exmanication, diagnosis and formal advice. Health24 and the expert accept no responsibility or liability for any damage or personal harm you may suffer resulting from making use of this content.

1
Our users say:
Posted by: cybershrink | 2012/10/04

Maybe it'd be productive if companies recognized a value in allowing people a limited amount of Time-Out without having to claim to be ill to get it. Sometimes nasty situations in the office make us really want time outside of them.
But it can easily become evasion, and avoids trying to solve the problems, which HR people are supposed to be eager to do.
Its not necessarly wrong if people are protective about their projects - its HOW they are protective, and how protective they are !
From the sound of it, you yourself are protective of your clients and projects, and understandably so.
If your overseas client has been having consistent problems with the assistant and/or lead - why has she not reported this in writing, to you and perhaps your superiors ?
If you acted properly in reporting the complaints to your manager, report to her also the uinpleasant responses you feel you are receiving, as this may help her to try to put it right.
Have you discussed with the assistant, for instance, what the complaints were that you received, and why you handled it the way you did, in main to try to protect her ? If she is making mistakes, offer to help her avoid such mistakes.
But not going to the office isn't any solution, is it ? It'll only make it easier for people to get resentful and stir trouble without you being able to deal with it appropriately.

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