Author Topic: Professional Darwinism: Update to OP on p.74  (Read 1257214 times)

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Ceallach

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Re: Professional Darwinism: Update to OP on p.74
« Reply #5625 on: April 22, 2014, 09:28:29 PM »
This is kind of a sad case of PD, it's so unnecessary... hopefully it can be resolved but I'm at the point where I don't really care anymore.   We hired a new case manager in February, and the quality of her work is great, her clients seem satisfied.    Unfortunately her standards are so high that she refuses to understand that other teams have different priorities, and that they can't drop everything and help her on a moment's notice.   Every time she doesn't get the response she wants from somebody she becomes irate and frustrated.  It's as if she sees herself as a lone island, the only person who cares about her clients, and that she has to fight for them... when in reality every single person here is focused on the same common goal.

I am only in the office 3 days per week, the other two days I'm available on phone if needed and also check my emails.   Every single week, at least once, I get a phone call from Linda complaining about something the customer service team have done, normally some kind of conversation she's had with them where she's unhappy with the outcome - we're talking about very routine, minor things, that aren't creating any extra work for anybody, just where she hasn't gotten her own way.  I spend 30 minutes on the phone coaching her through the problem and calming her down.  This would be slightly annoying.   But it's also important to note that Linda doesn't report to me - she has a very lovely manager of her own, Clare (who does report to me).    I also don't manage the customer service team directly, they have a very lovely manager Emma (who does report to me).      Yes, I have an open door policy, yes I encourage people to talk to me, and I love that they find me approachable.  But running to a senior executive with every tiny little concern?  Yeah, I'm starting to feel like a primary school teacher.   Yesterday it was that she went in and asked Abby for something, which happened to not be Abby's role.  Emma jumped in and explained that it wasn't a question they could answer straight away as they needed to look into it (it was a request for a schedule change a few week's ahead of time - not something they can answer off the top of their heads, or even look up quickly, quite complex).    Linda was not happy that Emma jumped in, and not happy that they can't give an answer right away.   (Emma actually offered to look at it for her that day if she would give her the details, which I personally think was actually quite generous as it was not a high priority request and the workload is very high this week!)   But no, Linda was Not Happy, and called me straight away to complain.   At length.   ::)

I've been very understanding of Linda up until now, helping her understand procedures and the way things work, and reassuring her.    But now I think it's getting ridiculous - stop calling me!     Emma and Clare are going to sit down and see if they can work out a plan to help Linda settle down and ensure she feels her work is given enough priority, while getting her back in line.   All the other case managers, including Clare, are happy with the customer service team.   Yes there are occasional issues, but they understand the different priorities and that while they each may have a list of clients, the customer service team are dealing with 100s of clients, everyday!


(For the record, my staff overall are awesome, if there were a thread to rave about awesome staff, I'd post nearly everyday).
"Nobody can do everything, but everybody can do something"


MrTango

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Re: Professional Darwinism: Update to OP on p.74
« Reply #5626 on: April 22, 2014, 09:37:05 PM »
Ceallach,

If I were in your position, I wouldn't put up with her at all.  In fact, I'd probably start answering with "No" to any request unless it's really urgent or needs my authority (i.e. never, ever give her what she wants if she fails to go through proper channels).

Of course, if she gave me attitude about it, I'd give her a written warning for insubordination with a notice that any further insubordination toward me or her manager would be met with termination of employment.

Ceallach

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Re: Professional Darwinism: Update to OP on p.74
« Reply #5627 on: April 22, 2014, 11:14:04 PM »
Ceallach,

If I were in your position, I wouldn't put up with her at all.  In fact, I'd probably start answering with "No" to any request unless it's really urgent or needs my authority (i.e. never, ever give her what she wants if she fails to go through proper channels).

Of course, if she gave me attitude about it, I'd give her a written warning for insubordination with a notice that any further insubordination toward me or her manager would be met with termination of employment.

It's ok, I don't need any advice just thought it was an interesting story to relate.     I'm not going to outright refuse to talk to her, I don't think that helps anything and like I said, open door and all that.     

She's not coming to me for approvals or to over-ride their decisions, she's coming to me to complain about it.    What she wants specifically isn't usually clear in her mind - because really she just wants things to work differently or to get her own way everytime.     Believe me, she is most definitely getting redirected back to the proper channels each time!   She actually seems quite literal minded.   After one issue where she was unhappy with the wording of an email response she got, I advised her that sometimes it's best to speak to the girls in person she shouldn't rely on emails all the time, she should pick up the phone or actually have a face-to-face meeting to work out the details.  So now she's mad because she went in there and they didn't drop everything and give her a definite answer immediately.   In this case, her request would have been better put in an email because from her end it's a fairly direct question, whereas from their end they need to look at ten different things in order to answer it.   (Which she should have known, and even if not Emma did try to explain).    It's just a bit of self-absorption!   She's also not being insubordinate or rude so a warning isn't appropriate at this stage. 
"Nobody can do everything, but everybody can do something"


lorelai

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Re: Professional Darwinism: Update to OP on p.74
« Reply #5628 on: April 23, 2014, 01:05:00 AM »
Had a recent grad apply to a job opening at my org. We haven't gotten many responses, or she definitely wouldn't have made it as far as she has through the interview process.

Instances of PD:
1. Sent me a cover letter addressed to a partner org of ours. I emailed her and told her if she was still interested, to reapply. She did, though the content of the cover letter did not change.
2. Job posting asks for social media skills. She posted on her personal twitter account that it's harder to get through the day when you hate your job.
(I told my boss about the above two and he said they weren't deal breakers and to bring her in. Ok.
3. I emailed her to schedule the interview, asked her to confirm that what I found was her personal twitter account. She did, but didn't go back and clean it up.
4. Asked me to send her directions to our office. What?? Google, or the address in my signature, or our website could have given her an answer.
5. We were running 2 min late. She was seen tapping her fingers looking annoyed in our lobby.
6. During the interview I asked about her questionable tweets. Her response was that she shouldn't have vented like that, and it happened three years ago and she shut down her prior acct, so she wouldn't do it again.
7. Sent me an e-thank you and spelled both my name and a colleague's wrong. In this email she said she explained that she had vented via tweet in a space meant for resource sharing - i.e. justifying her questionable tweet. Couple grammatical errors in her email.

Those first two were not deal breakers, but I'm still shaking my head at the other stuff. Not looking forward to rejecting her via phone! (Unofficial policy states that we call candidates who have bothered to come in).

o_gal

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Re: Professional Darwinism: Update to OP on p.74
« Reply #5629 on: April 23, 2014, 07:57:48 AM »
I had to terminate a man with 16 years with the company this morning due to an inappropriate relationship between him and a female employee he supervised.  Even worse, both employees are married.  It wasn't just the inappropriate relationship, he lied repeatedly when we started investigating.  She eventually admitted it, but even knowing that, he continued to lie and say there wasn't anything going on.  He finally admitted it when confronted with pages and pages of emails between them that left absolutely nothing to the imagination.  Emails that they sent on company computers on company time.  The female employee had told me that he thought he had a way to permantly delete the emails.  He was wrong.

Back in the late 90's, our church at the time was looking for new ministers. We needed both a senior and an associate pastor, since both had left. We hired a clergy couple who were looking for new opportunities. Why exactly they were looking became very clear about 5 years later.

In February of that year, the wife announced that she was accepting an associate pastorship at a church in Texas. We all wondered what the husband would do, and about a month later he announced that he was going to retire. They set their last work Sundays for that May. The church organized a huge banquet to thank them for their service, with many gifts and heartfelt displays of appreciation.

About 2 weeks after their last Sundays, my husband ran into a friend who went to a different church in our same denomination. As it turns out, this friend had just served on a trial board for the senior pastor, at which his preaching credentials were revoked. To use an old term, he was defrocked.

And just what ecclesiastical crime had he commited? Well, let's say that the church frowns on ministers marrying people and talking to them about being faithful and upholding wedding vows when you start an affair with a married member of your congregation. Then refuse to break it off, and just move on with your wife (who knows about your affairs) to a new church. Do this a few times and eventually you'll run into a husband of your new lover who won't just let it drop if you choose to move on to a new church.

Shalamar

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Re: Professional Darwinism: Update to OP on p.74
« Reply #5630 on: April 23, 2014, 10:46:00 AM »
Quote
5. We were running 2 min late. She was seen tapping her fingers looking annoyed in our lobby.

I wouldn't consider that PD.  I get annoyed when I'm kept waiting too, especially if I'm worried about a parking meter expiring.    Now, if she looked pointedly at her watch and scowled at you when you came to get her for the interview, THAT would be PD (in my opinion).

ladyknight1

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Re: Professional Darwinism: Update to OP on p.74
« Reply #5631 on: April 23, 2014, 02:15:32 PM »
We wouldn't hire anyone who was visibly or audibly annoyed at someone being a few minutes late.

It can be chalked up to different clocks and meeting room availability from one appointment to the next.

siamesecat2965

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Re: Professional Darwinism: Update to OP on p.74
« Reply #5632 on: April 23, 2014, 02:30:56 PM »
We wouldn't hire anyone who was visibly or audibly annoyed at someone being a few minutes late.

It can be chalked up to different clocks and meeting room availability from one appointment to the next.

I wouldn't have been upset at being kept waiting for 2 minutes, or even 10-15. Things happen, and sometimes life doens't go as scheduled. Meetings run over, something major happens that must be dealt with right then and there, and so on. 

It's like the doctor's office. Your appt may be at x time, and I will say most of mine generally are pretty much on time, and I don't ever plan on being seen right at the minute my appt is. Like my physical. As I was turning into the parking lot, an ambulance came from the other direction. And ended up in my dr.'s office for a prior patient emergency. So my appt got pushed back a bit. No biggie.

Carotte

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Re: Professional Darwinism: Update to OP on p.74
« Reply #5633 on: April 23, 2014, 02:58:57 PM »
Being annoyed is normal, showing it while you're there to make a good a impression is not advised.
I've been kept waiting for some job interviews, one for a good half hour (urgent thing interviewer had to fix) and bet I sat in the lobby with a smile plastered in my face. I only dared to fish out a notebook a good 20 minutes in just in case.

If someones afraid for their parking meter while at an interview or a medical place then they didn't plan accordingly, leaving yourself only a 5 min safe window until you think you'll be out and the meter running out is a bit wishfull thinking.
What if the interview is going great, they can't stop talking and asking you questions and are being really enthusiastic with your application and in the middle of it you have to say you have to run out to feed the meter, or worse, cut it short.
(or the doctor had an emergency appointment).

In this situation it was PD. There are some situations you should be able to expect to stay what you planned on staying and not be delayed, but a job interview is not one of them.

pierrotlunaire0

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Re: Professional Darwinism: Update to OP on p.74
« Reply #5634 on: April 23, 2014, 03:09:45 PM »
This just happened.  A clerk came to me today.  She had an employee from a dealership presenting deals to be processed.  We have to see xerox copies of customer's licenses to compare signatures.  (Photos aren't important, but there has been a sharp increase in fraud lately, and we have to compare signatures).

The xerox of the license was so bad that it was near impossible to make out the signature.  She also told me that she had a DMV Investigator on the phone (had been inspecting paperwork at the dealer for legal compliance), who was verifying the signature was good.  I said, Okay, process, but record the Investigator's name with the paperwork as verifying it.

We just got a call from DMV Investigations about an unrelated issue.  On the phone, the clerk said, "Wow, this is my day for talking with Investigators!  I was talking with Investigator Richard Johnson earlier."

"Who is Richard Johnson?  We have no one by that name."

It turns out that Richard Johnson is the office manager at the dealership, and they are currently under investigation for various infractions, including forging customers' signatures on documents.

So, Mr. Johnson, you are already under investigation, and you chose to lie to a state employee and represent yourself as a state employee with enforcement privileges?  That sound you hear is the real Investigation Unit on their way to you right now, to shut you down for good.
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lorelai

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Re: Professional Darwinism: Update to OP on p.74
« Reply #5635 on: April 23, 2014, 03:15:28 PM »
In this case, the candidate was notified ahead of time that we would pay for her parking. And it was 2 minutes! Very different from 10 or even 5 minutes.

Shalamar

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Re: Professional Darwinism: Update to OP on p.74
« Reply #5636 on: April 23, 2014, 03:35:23 PM »
I guess my point was that you said "she was seen tapping her fingers" - so  maybe she thought she was being unobserved?   Anyhoo, I'll drop it.  :)

I mentioned parking meters only because I remember having an interview and only being able to buy an hour's worth of time.   At one point the interview was going really well, and I was being introduced around the place and shown where everything was - and at the back of my mind I kept thinking "Hurry UP!  I'm going to get a ticket!"   ;D

ladyknight1

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Re: Professional Darwinism: Update to OP on p.74
« Reply #5637 on: April 23, 2014, 03:36:18 PM »
This just happened.  A clerk came to me today.  She had an employee from a dealership presenting deals to be processed.  We have to see xerox copies of customer's licenses to compare signatures.  (Photos aren't important, but there has been a sharp increase in fraud lately, and we have to compare signatures).

The xerox of the license was so bad that it was near impossible to make out the signature.  She also told me that she had a DMV Investigator on the phone (had been inspecting paperwork at the dealer for legal compliance), who was verifying the signature was good.  I said, Okay, process, but record the Investigator's name with the paperwork as verifying it.

We just got a call from DMV Investigations about an unrelated issue.  On the phone, the clerk said, "Wow, this is my day for talking with Investigators!  I was talking with Investigator Richard Johnson earlier."

"Who is Richard Johnson?  We have no one by that name."

It turns out that Richard Johnson is the office manager at the dealership, and they are currently under investigation for various infractions, including forging customers' signatures on documents.

So, Mr. Johnson, you are already under investigation, and you chose to lie to a state employee and represent yourself as a state employee with enforcement privileges?  That sound you hear is the real Investigation Unit on their way to you right now, to shut you down for good.

Not just PD, but legal trouble too. Shaking my head.

lorelai

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Re: Professional Darwinism: Update to OP on p.74
« Reply #5638 on: April 23, 2014, 03:51:32 PM »
I guess my point was that you said "she was seen tapping her fingers" - so  maybe she thought she was being unobserved?   Anyhoo, I'll drop it.  :)

I mentioned parking meters only because I remember having an interview and only being able to buy an hour's worth of time.   At one point the interview was going really well, and I was being introduced around the place and shown where everything was - and at the back of my mind I kept thinking "Hurry UP!  I'm going to get a ticket!"   ;D

Sure, I hear you. She was observed by my coworker walking by and our receptionist who had welcomed her into the office and sat her down in front of the front desk. She was visibly annoyed, which is different from how you handled things I'm sure!

Diane AKA Traska

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Re: Professional Darwinism: Update to OP on p.74
« Reply #5639 on: April 23, 2014, 04:03:34 PM »
I guess my point was that you said "she was seen tapping her fingers" - so  maybe she thought she was being unobserved?   Anyhoo, I'll drop it.  :)

I mentioned parking meters only because I remember having an interview and only being able to buy an hour's worth of time.   At one point the interview was going really well, and I was being introduced around the place and shown where everything was - and at the back of my mind I kept thinking "Hurry UP!  I'm going to get a ticket!"   ;D

Sure, I hear you. She was observed by my coworker walking by and our receptionist who had welcomed her into the office and sat her down in front of the front desk. She was visibly annoyed, which is different from how you handled things I'm sure!

It's also possible she was annoyed at something else and hadn't put on a "game face".  I know that if I'm annoyed at, say, someone parking badly to where I barely have enough room to get out of the car, I'd hold onto that longer than I really should.
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