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Q: Several months ago one of my former employees, who’d left our agency, returned as my immediate supervisor. It’s been hell ever since. Before his return, I had been respected and allowed to function semi-autonomously. I’d myself been a supervisor, overseeing one employee until he left and management decided to shift the duties he’d handled to another department. I received excellent performance evaluations for my accomplishments.   My former employee rules commander style… Read More

Do you fire an otherwise acceptable employee after he unintentionally creates widespread panic among those your organization has committed to serving? What if he’s a new employee who didn’t know better – and you question whether his supervisor bears part of the responsibility because he didn’t receive adequate training? What if the bulk of the panic occurred because your organization didn’t have solid systems in place to prevent the problems one accidental… Read More

Q: My introverted, insecure, my-way-or-the-highway supervisor has an abnormally low threshold for anything resembling a suggestion. Though I have both technical and managerial skills and could be a wonderful resource for her, I’m a no-BS kind of person who speaks his mind and what I say invariably rubs her the wrong way, even and especially when it’s right. When I first started in her department, I tried to get her to see the… Read More

Q: I work in a medical clinic. A supporting staff member is supposed to work alongside any physician in a room with a sedated female patient, but we’re short-staffed and so this doesn’t always happen. Twice in the last year, I entered a room in which one of our physicians appeared to be acting inappropriately. It happened again this morning. It’s a senior physician and he appeared to have been masturbating. I… Read More

It started with Harvey Weinstein and gained unstoppable velocity when thousands of women posted true, painful stories using the hashtag #MeToo. Serious, long-buried sexual harassment complaints have rocked many workplaces – including ones not at all prepared to handle the topic. Even organizations well-equipped to handle sexual harassment complaints and investigations are finding that their wheels are going off the tracks when faced with a tension between two workplace groups – those… Read More

You’ve met the predatory customer. He or she makes work life difficult for others because his money, power or simply his status as a customer enable him to do so. Do businesses have a responsibility to protect their customers from other customers that sexually harass them? What can an employer do if their business survival depends on contracts from a larger business when the individual who controls the purse strings for those… Read More

“How the hell could he have been so stupid?” the manager asked when he called. “What burns me is this spring he asked me if he could skip the annual anti-harassment training because he’d been through it five years in a row. So explain to me why I have credible complaints from three different women alleging this man on my senior team sexually harassed each of them?” The manager didn’t like it… Read More

Question: I’m the senior manager at our branch. After I stopped one of our exempt employees from what I considered a paid time off (PTO) scam in which she repeatedly worked an hour or two a day when on personal leave and claimed full day pay so she didn’t need to deduct the day from her PTO, she acted personally affronted. Then she announced she had a potentially terminal illness. Our employees… Read More

Q. With all the media frenzy about sexual harassment, I feel like every man in America has a target on his back. All a woman has to do is cry sexual harassment, and even if it didn’t happen or supposedly happened years ago, the guy is toast. So now I have to live in fear that I’m going to tick off some woman who’ll get back at me by claiming I harassed… Read More

Here’s a question from one of our readers on http://www.WorkplaceCoachBlog.com: Dear coach, a year ago my husband received a great offer and we moved cities. I was able to keep my job as a remote worker. I worked remotely for a year and concluded I needed a job locally as remote work does not fit my personality. I had 2 offers and despite all the deep thoughts, I think I chose the… Read More