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Author Topic: lack of communication  (Read 4067 times)

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lack of communication
« on: September 28, 2013, 07:36:45 AM »
The place I work is awful about communicating - I am trying to improve communication (& I'm a peon)

- department A head  supervisor tells only one person pertinent info (the person on the bottom of the chain of command), don't know IF department B supervisor was told

- department A supervisor does NOT communicate well with department B supervisor and vice-versa

- there is no clear cut chain of command and there are more "managers" than peons

- the managers & peons from both departments end up upset because it shouldn't be left to a peon to tell managers about policy changes

I honestly think I'm going to get fired because "carp" flows downhill   

(I've also had some issues adjusting to the job/this job site .... its different)
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Re: lack of communication
« Reply #1 on: September 29, 2013, 05:39:53 PM »
I am assuming from what you said that you are the lowly peon caught in the middle of the communication mess and who is getting the "carp" flowing down hill. ( (((HUGS))), been there, done that, didn't buy the t-shirt because I wanted to forget. )

You need to get clarification about from your immediate supervisor. You are getting flack because managers cannot be professional and communicate with each other. I would ask your supervisor what protocols you should be following with each situation.

Example 1:

If Department B manager gets upset with you not communicating what Department Manager A said, ask your supervisor what the communication protocols are that you should be following. Should you copy Manager B on all communications sent by Manager A? Should you ask Manager A if this has been communicated to Manager B? Once you have the protocols, follow them to the letter.

If Manager A doesn't want his/her communications sent to Manager B, as per protocol you are told, then point him or her to your supervisor for clarification of protocol.

Example 2:

Who is responsible for communicating policy changes in your company? I have never heard of a peon telling managers about policy changes. That is a top-level down communication in every company I have ever worked for. Even HR changes are communicated by same-level HR managers to department managers.

The next time a manager gives you a policy change to communicate, take it your immediate supervisor and ask for clarification. Even if you are the one to communicate it, there needs to be something indicating "Manager A requested I send this policy change out to everyone in Departments A & B."

It is a mixture of professionalism and CYA. You get a clear protocol from your immediate supervisor which you follow. You document everything so when the "carp" starts flowing you have a natural dam for diverting it to the people who deserve it.

Every newcomer has to learn the office culture. When dealing with a culture as dysfunctional as this one, you need to keep things professional and always ask for clarification in odd situations. By making your immediate supervisor aware of it and getting clear protocols, you may start to see some changes. If it doesn't change, you might want to consider a new job or a transfer.


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Re: lack of communication
« Reply #2 on: September 29, 2013, 06:23:37 PM »
Thanks for the suggestions - I'm going to use them ... I've already notified Managers from both departments, who are both new, the protocol used last year for a reoccurring situation (if protocol isn't followed its not pretty) - my email was basically "FYI, this was the protocol last year, when it wasn't followed things did not work"  I also said peon P worked on this as well.

I have the impression that TPTB don't see eye to eye - not that any of them are bad people

I am trying to get out ... but as I've had some issues adapting with one issue I don't know I'd get good recommendations - (the 2 people I worked the closest to were toxic & are now gone, and nothing I did was *right- but like all bullies, they flew under the radar with several people).

Mish412 - I totally agree with you - I should not be the one left to pass the messages on ... to be honest I wasn't asked to, but informed managers from dept. B so that they wouldn't think I wasn't doing my job :(

*I had another coworker tell me you could breath the wrong way around bully
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Re: lack of communication
« Reply #3 on: September 29, 2013, 06:51:20 PM »
Rain, it does sound like you have a good handle on the lack of communication issues. So you can either duck and take cover or try to use this "opportunity" to increase your responsibility in the organization.

Start taking the communication and liason role between Department A and B. 

Department A manager passes on info to you. Immediately ask "Would you like to get the information to the rest of A Department and B Department?" If answer is yes, draft a communication to Department Manager A asking for them to confirm it is accurate and then send it out to the rest of Department A with the wording Misha suggested. Then send a copy of it over to Departement B manager saying "Department A manager asked that I share this with you. Would like me to distribute to the rest of your department?"

Do the same when Department B manager gives you info that you don't think other's know.

You can even formalize it. Suggest to the managers you set up a generic email account that is like "Department A Communications" so when you send out emails using this account it doesn't appear like it is coming from you but from the Department.

In our company, the managers or execs seldom directly communicate policy changes. Instead it is a "peon" who writes it up, gets the manager approval and then uses one of our generic email accounts to communicate it out on "behalf" of which ever manager is making the policy change.

Good luck.


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Re: lack of communication
« Reply #4 on: September 30, 2013, 06:20:39 PM »
In our company, the managers or execs seldom directly communicate policy changes. Instead it is a "peon" who writes it up, gets the manager approval and then uses one of our generic email accounts to communicate it out on "behalf" of which ever manager is making the policy change.

Ditto for me, and I was wondering if this wasn't the expected *but not well communicated* role of the OP.