General Etiquette > All In A Day's Work

When someone talks to you like you are stupid.

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hobish:

I'm going to say right off the bat there may be some sexism in what i am about to post. While it is a factor, i would prefer if we didn't go off on a tangent about that in particular.

Gish works for a company with under 1,000 people. It is not a big corporation. It is tiny for what it does, but it has been doing it for many years, even where other small and some large companies have failed. They're apparently doing something right.

His boss - the one he anwers to be-all-end-all - is kind of a moody woman. She likes him. She expects good things out of him.
BUT - she talks to him like he is stupid. She will spend 20 minutes chewing him out for doing something he should have done. She talks to him like he is stupid. And she is unpredictable. And everyone else in his bit of the office are women and don't get treated that way. My personal biased opinion is if he was a lady he wouldn't
 :P If it was someone else i might think it was funny.

So:
What does he say?

athersgeo:
I think the short answer is probably: nothing, but start polishing his CV and looking for a less toxic place of employment (which, I know, is definitely not straight forward, but this sounds like the sort of woman he'll never be able to win with.)

A friend of mine was in Gish's situation (only man in an otherwise female office) and was treated in a very similar way, ending up with him losing his job. T took them to tribunal for unfair dismissal (and won) but it was stress and hassle that he could have done without.

WillyNilly:
Well I think first and foremost he should look into a new job (even if just transfering depts). But I understand that's not always feasible. So next he should do two fold.

For long term, he should document. He should be specific and detailed but unemotional in his documentation.

For immediate, he can calmly respond "yes. I know. Is there a reason you are focusing on addressing this issue with me specifically?"

He sould also be introspective - maybe he's getting picked on because he's not as good as his co-workers at what he does. Studies have shown for example women tend to be better at multi-tasking then men. Men in turn tendto have more physical strength. (Of course there are exceptions,but in general.) If his job requires lots of multi-tasking and he' doing it one task at a time, he might be getting his work done, but not up to team speed, hence his boss thinking lowly of him. I know I tend to loose patience with workers who may be good but who aren't a good mesh to team workflow.

Of course hopefully its not him, but its worth paying attention to. Some bosses are just bad leaders in they play favorites/least favorites and it shows. But sometimes it really is the employee. And most often, its a little bit of both.

hobish:
" I know I tend to loose patience with workers who may be good but who aren't a good mesh to team workflow."

That may be part of it. When he knows he is right he will not let it go. That's good in places with a competitive atmosphere, but in ones where they just want you to do what they tell you, not so much. After getting laid off from competitive mega-corp and going to a smaller company ... he may be a little extra. He is used to being able to argue with a supervisor.

I hope he doesn't have to look for another job. The place where he is now is ok overall; it's just the getting treated like the donkey that is no good.

LA lady:

--- Quote from: hobish on November 01, 2012, 10:14:37 AM ---That may be part of it. When he knows he is right he will not let it go.
--- End quote ---

First of all, if he thinks he is the only one who can determine what's right, he will come off as egotistical and difficult wherever he is.[/quote]


--- Quote ---That's good in places with a competitive atmosphere, but in ones where they just want you to do what they tell you, not so much.
--- End quote ---

The choice of atmospheres is not as simple a dichotomy as "competitive" and "do as  you're told"  (authoritarian)  There is also the teamwork/cooperative model (and probably others that do not come to mind at the moment.  It is not his job to change the culture of his department to the one he likes just because of personal preference.  We women are constantly being told that we need to learn to polish our spines and deal with the competitiveness of the workforce, and that women often don't know how to step out of the cooperative model.  From what you have written, Gish needs to learn more about the cooperative model and how to fit it. The fact that this is an all female department may or may not have something to do with the fact of the cooperative culture.


--- Quote ---After getting laid off from competitive mega-corp and going to a smaller company ... he may be a little extra. He is used to being able to argue with a supervisor.
--- End quote ---

Anyone should be able to discuss and/or disagree with a supervisor, but in the end, if we cannot persuade the supervisor, we all have to do as told or get out.  That is why the supervisor is supervisor.  And the word "argue" in this context seems to carry a connotation of aggressiveness that is unsurprisingly counterproductive.  I have told younger and more hotheaded friends that I have never seen anyone argue their way out of a traffic ticket.  Persuade, occasionally, but arguing just ticks the officer off.

I think you have largely answered your own original question.  But how do you get an argumentative man who won't let go when he "knows he is right" to make any changes in his own behavior, instead of expecting the supervisor to change?

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