SRS Shit's Getting to me (office politics)

Discussion in 'On Topic' started by Ideotique, Apr 9, 2008.

  1. Ideotique

    Ideotique Drinking on monday nights does not make me an alco

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    Just need to unload some stuff and this would appear to be the best place as my girl is away for a couple of weeks on a work trip

    Basically, my manager was fired about 2 weeks ago, given 4 weeks to tie up his loose ends but has never come back to work. I'm 5 months out of uni, but have been working here for about 3 years. Work in a property development/design consultancy fwiw

    In his absence I have had to step up dramatically. Been pushing myself to get things done as a team manager and making sure work gets out. He let things drop before he left so everything was in a mess. As a result of this I pulled in a number of bigger jobs and some new clients. Been praised by senior management, told position could be made permanent etc etc

    But, in doing this I have alienated a number of co workers I used to get along with pretty well. Now, they knew I had issues with my manager in terms of his management approach, and that I wasn't happy getting scraps to work on. They are also not happy that I have stepped up and started getting stuff done, which they did not do when it needed doing. Rumours are being spread that I caused the previous manager to get fired, I'm getting dirty looks and snide comments from many people in the organisation now.

    I'm the only person left in what was my 4 person pod before, people have moved away from me. Kinda getting to me a bit, as I used to get on well with these people, had nothing to do with the manager getting the boot and have basically been doing everything in my power to make sure we haven't gone bust as profits are down.

    This has been made worse by being complemented by senior management during weekly team meetings. I'm not trying to suck up to them or anything, just need a bit of advice as to where to go from here. I've got some good friends in other sections who are sticking buy me, but I basically just feel a bit isolated, and also more than a little pissed off as I am the only one doing the extra work at this time.

    Not sure where I'm going with this, but just really needed to get it all out. Any advice regarding the whole office politics thing would be appreciated :sadwavey:
     
  2. Coottie

    Coottie BOOMER......SOONER OT Supporter

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    As we say in AA, What other people think of me is none of my business.

    If they were good friends, ask them if you've done something to offend them because you guys used to talk. If they say no, then leave it alone....just assume that they have personal shit going on in their lives. Always put a positive spin on their actions/inactions instead of a negative one.

    Whatever you do, do NOT engage in gossip. No matter what. Rise above the bullshit. Don't be sucked into it and keep reaching for the top.

    Also, do not make excuses for your work habits or put them down or try to smooth things over. It's work not a book club. If they think that you had something to do with the other person getting fired then it might be difficult to get them to help you but it still can be done. Just stay professional and deal with the work.

    The bottom line is when things change in business some people will be really happy, some pissed and others will realize it's just business and things change.

    I had a similar experience where I worked for 4.5 years in one department and was asked to help take over some responsibilities in another department(the accounting dept). The people in that new dept didn't think I knew anything about anything even though I did have a BS in Accounting.

    It's a really long story but basically the CFO saw what I was doing with one of the subsidiaries and wanted to implement the same thing in the parent company. He put me in charge of the project. The head of that other department didn't like me coming in with any suggestions. I tried to be nice, I tried to be professional but this woman wasn't having any of it. And we were friends before. I actually liked her a lot.

    I kept it professional but I wouldn't let up. She wouldn't either and I finally had to go back to the CFO and say, "I can't do the job you've asked me to do because this woman is not cooperating." Now this was after many months of trying and finally we had a "come to Jesus" meeting.

    It was clear that my ideas were sound and the right way to go but she still resisted. We ended up demoting her and bringing in someone new to replace her. The CFO even asked me if I would take over her duties and we would just fire the woman. Problem was....I didn't want that job.

    Some people HATE change and others embrace it. Just keep it professional and not personal and you should be fine. If you get the managers job, you may actually have to fire someone if they son't come around. Anyways, hope that helps....good luck.
     
  3. Spiritus

    Spiritus Active Member

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    Rise above the bullshit.

    Obviously, the ones who make snide comments are jealous and probably liked their previous boss more then you. However, tough shit, it's your day.

    They will isolate from you. It's now your job to find some sort of mediator - to get one of them to become closer to you - and to cool off that situation.

    As for management, they are looking at you with a new eye. An eye with high expectations. You are being royally stress tested.

    I mean, if the employees continue to be a problem for you, you will eventually be empowered to fire them. If they choose to identify with that behavior, they have suited themselves.

    But right now it's your time to shine. And that doesn't mean it's going to be pretty. It will be pure hell. Let them talk about you behind your back. It's no problem - you are above all that - not in status - it's because you know that their gossip is envy, the fact they do not want you to even have that position, that you can rise above it.

    There will be stress from above and below. This is a difficult time. Efforts concentrated on stabilizing the situation are not efforts wasted. The politics will continue. Forget the politics, you do not have time for that. You only have time to focus on eliminating the politics.

    Find self interest in the employees, and see what you can do to boost their moral. If you can find something of self interest to them, such as something they've been wanting (new water cooler, I have no idea), then try to arrange for that to come their way. They will look up to you with respect, as you are serving them.

    Also, do not outshine the master. Never outshine the master. Do well, but watch that ego. Meaning, watch yourself. There is instinct, and then you can refine that into intuition. Intuition flows from the heart. Steal from the instincts to feed the heart. Where they snicker at you, you can cause internal disruption by causing at least one of those employees to have self interest in you, because you for some reason went especially out of your way to help him or her. In this case, you will break up the group, and if splinter cells remain that cause disruptions in the company, they can be dealt with later.

    Strategic times.

    Oh and one last thing. Forget whatever the managers say when they complement you. Don't let them stroke your pride. You must act in value worth less then the ash of a cigarette. Be extremely humble and modest. You are in a more powerful position, strategically take control of the situation and make it play in your favor, if it's at all possible.
     
  4. civicmon

    civicmon got all my game from the streets of california.

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    I think you need to have a real heart-to-heart talk with your manager since the position you're in now is obviously something you're not prepared for. They need to straighten that out before all their projects wind up way behind schedule.
     
  5. Spiritus

    Spiritus Active Member

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    I approve of that, because it adds another color to the spectrum. Plus, if he is that brutally honest, and can prove how things are going, and perhaps fore casted what would have happened had he kept going his path, they will realize he is honest, and perhaps still give him the job. Why kill the chicken that lays golden eggs, especially near recession time.

    Good add to the mix, this guy ultimately has the ball in his court and I respect when someone deviates, because it is in this manner we often find a variation of potentially correct answers. :bigthumb:
     
  6. Ideotique

    Ideotique Drinking on monday nights does not make me an alco

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    Excellent advice.

    In terms of the management of projects I'm not finding it too difficult. Have gotten the reports/designs out way below lump sum fee we quoted (so more profit for us) and in a pretty quick time frame. Have already had feedback from some key clients that they are very happy with the level of service they are now recieving, and have sent some lucrative new jobs our way as a result, just based on the 2 weeks I've been doing the hard yards. It's not the actual projects that are the problem (got a decent idea what I am doing there) it's the internal office politics that are the problem. I was essentially doing all the work under the fired boss anyway, so the only change has been
    a) I am now responsible
    b) I have changed my role in the office.

    I guess I have always been a bit of a joker in the office, got everything done to a high standard, but was the last to leave any function, always having a laugh with people and generally being part of the furniture. The bloke who is always up for a quick word and a laugh. It's just now I've moved away a bit from that simply because I don't have the time now. Still stick around for office drinks, but less stuff during work hours. Was a pretty rapid change brought on by the change in circumstances. Might have confused or upset some people.

    I've always been up front with the management about my abilities - and have already told them I do not feel confident getting one large job out due to the projected timeline, work schedule and amount of information we require. But I have got another person on board to help out with that at least. He has actually alerted management to the problem, as it was getting worse - emails now circulating about how I lied about my manager to get him fired so I could take his place and other lies like that. Never once did anything of the sort.

    Basically, I've taken things on board that have been said, ignored the crap, and gotten on with what I have to do. Have some great people I work with in other sections who are providing a bit of assistance and advice.

    Luckily this is the only thing that is bothering me at the moment. Reading through here, I feel kind of bad that I'm raising such trivial stuff but just needed to unload to people.
     

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