Workplace Coach

Monthly Archives: October 2016

Question:  My supervisor and I have worked together for years and have a similar sense of humor. We play practical jokes on each other and banter back and forth. It makes the day go faster and it’s all the funnier when others aren’t sure whether or not to take seriously our put-downs of each other. A couple women in the workplace seized upon the controversy caused by Donald Trump’s 2005 video to… Read More

Question:  When I showed “Carl’s” resume to our leadership council, “Sara” turned white and asked, “Has he already been hired?” I said that we were negotiating his starting salary but we’d already indicated we wanted him on board. After the meeting, Sara asked to meet with me privately. She’s an attractive single woman and frequents several dating sites. She told me Carl was a sexual predator who had date-raped her and that… Read More

Workplace personality conflicts are everywhere—does this scene sound familiar? Haley greets Mike first thing in the morning as they pass in the hallway, and never gets back a “good morning,” “hi,” or even a grunt in return. Mike swears he doesn’t see her when they pass each other, and you believe him. He’s a task-focused guided missile, and a great guy, but he bruises Haley’s feelings without meaning to. Gwen poses even… Read More

Question: My immediate supervisor, “Alex,” is nasty, narcissistic and treats all employees like scum. He screams at, threatens and lies to us. Our department loses a good employee every month, so we have a revolving door of new employees. There are only two of us who’ve been here for more than 15 months. Other employees and I have gone to human resources to complain without receiving help. The problem — Alex is… Read More

Question: As the only person of color in my workplace, it’s been increasingly uncomfortable since the Keith Scott killing in Charlotte. With some of the prior situations, like when George Zimmerman shot Trayvon Martin, we all found ourselves on the same side. Everyone thought Zimmerman was a jerk. Something’s changed in the past couple of months. When I walk into the break room now, I hear my coworkers talking about what’s going… Read More

Question: I am an Admin. Manager that oversees two departments — one of which is Accounts Payable. In July I received a statement showing we owed $150 for an invoice in February 2014. It was for parts that were originally on back order which delayed processing for payment. It was our error that we didn’t copy the PO for our back order file.  If we had, I would have tracked the invoice… Read More

Question:  I work for a small company in rural Alaska. We live on-site and a distance from the nearest community. Although more than 20 of us work here in the summer, only three of us stay here in the winter. My two coworkers are a couple. Yesterday after dinner, I overheard “Jane” sobbing. When I asked her if she was OK, she said, “Mike just beat the s— out of me.” She looked horrible…. Read More

Question: We recently hired a manager who turned out to be a total disappointment. He completely fooled all three of us when he interviewed; he said all the right things, but once hired, didn’t produce. Based on his great interview and the fact that he submitted glowing letters of reference, we made a huge mistake; we didn’t call his references. We also didn’t pull the plug on him right away. We kept… Read More