Having hassle at work

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15 years 6 days ago #18601 by moggy
Having hassle at work was created by moggy
My immediate co-ordinator (forunately not line manager) is a brown nosed person who has managed to create a role that in her eyes she views as a software management role. She has no qualifications or experience in software development. She is making major mistakes and trying to point the finger at me when things go wrong (eg, stop work on this project, switch to this one, so now why did you not finish the first task on the deadline?)
It has got to the point where I feel the need to involve the HR dept. I have never done this before in my entire working career.

I also found out the day before yesterday that she had gained access without my knowledge and permission to my email box, all folders, including sent items with the request to HR for a confidential meeting. Now I know there was nothing un professional in there, but the fact she did it without my knowledge I am furious about. (not sure exactly how she did it at this pont)
can anyone point me to NZ law regarding this? I know in the UK it would be breach of the data protection act.

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15 years 6 days ago #275844 by granny56r
Replied by granny56r on topic Having hassle at work
Flippn heck! Can't help or advise but feel for you. Hope someone can.

I love deadlines. I like the whooshing sound they make as they fly by.
DOUGLAS ADAMS

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15 years 6 days ago #275845 by moggy
Replied by moggy on topic Having hassle at work
I have been keeping a journal the past few weeks, as I felt the need to guard my back,
included in this is several publically verifiable contraditions - along the lines of I told you to do this, how dare you do this instead (with witnesses)
Also included are exceptionally rude, patronising, belittling emails. My job title is a techincal business analyst, which means I am trained for and experienced at analysing business requirements (and implementing them). I have now been told I am not allowed to communicate directly to the end user as "I would confuse them, and she can explain in words they understand". The thing is I had loads of specialist training and experience in this area, and whilst she can explain in words they understand, she is incapable reproducing this information in anyform anyone can work with. In previous roles I have been commended for my ability to communicate with users.

I have never before requested a meeting with HR, I would like peoples advice how to proceed. My prefered choice is to request transfer to a different department, but in the same role (can give various practical reasons for this without naming names), or to ask for a completely different role if one becomes available.
Sorry this has turned into a rant

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15 years 6 days ago #275872 by Pumpkingirl
Replied by Pumpkingirl on topic Having hassle at work
The only problem is that your HR manager is going to have to see both sides, and he/she could agree with this person and not you!

The Labour Department have people who can help you (for free) with issues like this and there is lots of info about different ways to approach solving a problem like this.

The best thing I ever did when I had a ongoing serious problem at work with bullying by my manager was to pay for an hour of the time of a specialist employment lawyer. Best money I ever spent - I got a new job, more money and was taken away from the influence of this person, and I didn't even have to engage the lawyer. And all this happened within a day.

All I did was tell the overall boss of our department that I"d been to see the lawyer, and what they said. Fortunately, in my case the manager who was so horrid had allowed much of his behaviour to be seen multiple people in our open plan office. To have lots of witnesses was quite handy.

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15 years 6 days ago #275874 by Seaside
Replied by Seaside on topic Having hassle at work
Many employers have a policy stating that all emails generated and received on their system are the property of the employer.

I'm pretty sure we don't have the equivalent of the Data Protection Act over here (not a computer law specialist though). Probably the most relevant legislation to your situation would be the Privacy Act, but if those emails are the stated property of the employer, then your privacy in relation to them gets a bit tenuous. However, if the co-ordinator wasn't acting on behalf of the employer, then the employer would probably not be happy to find out that one of their employee's is breaching another employee's privacy.

There is a duty of good faith on the part of both you and your employer to be active and communicative, etc in your employment relationship (Employment Relations Act).

In my experience of reading employment cases, these things often turn into a 'he said, she said' situation. Keep notes, be calm but open about your concerns. This could potentially come under the classification of a workplace bullying situation, although in many cases I've read, what one person thinks is bullying is determined to be a personality conflict. Either way, your HR department should be geared up to deal with this sort of situation.

Kids, beasts, and chillies in Swannanoa South.
www.farmaway.co.nz

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15 years 6 days ago #275875 by Seaside
Replied by Seaside on topic Having hassle at work

Pumpkingirl;256415 wrote:
The Labour Department have people who can help you (for free) with issues like this and there is lots of info about different ways to approach solving a problem like this.


They do indeed, however the employment agreement should have a clause about resolution of employment problems. I can pretty much guarantee that the clause suggests contacting the employer (ie HR dept) about the problem as the first step. You don't have to, but if you phone the DoL, they will most likely ask if you've made a complaint to your employer.

Kids, beasts, and chillies in Swannanoa South.
www.farmaway.co.nz

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15 years 6 days ago #275877 by beedee
Replied by beedee on topic Having hassle at work
When you have your meeting be smart and allow in fact insist that she is to go first and say their bit.. then read from a prepared script, your data from your journal of the harrassment/dealings and conflict.. how you have not been able to do your job and what barriers she has put up.
finish with your feeling on the matter and end it concisely. take a support person, they pick up on the body language and act as a witness.
I dont know much about Emails but do think they can get into your system at will and whenever, so wouldnt even mention that except as part of your hurt feelings.
be proactive and not reactive, they cant twist silence.. and if you feel really really vulnerable then take a tape recorder, since you cant afford a minutes of the meeting person. the minutes taken of my HR meeting was so interesting, I dont think it was the meeting I went to!!! so HR are for managers not workers in case you had a funny belief they were... any unions are slightly useful to inform, but dont rely on any grunty help..
keep cool

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15 years 6 days ago #275881 by Pumpkingirl
Replied by Pumpkingirl on topic Having hassle at work

Seaside;256418 wrote: You don't have to, but if you phone the DoL, they will most likely ask if you've made a complaint to your employer.

I'm not disgreeing with that step (of talking to the employer first) or with what you're saying about DOL :D , it's just if you need to know your rights, the correct procedure etc, the DOL can be a good place to start.

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15 years 6 days ago #275885 by Seaside
Replied by Seaside on topic Having hassle at work

Pumpkingirl;256425 wrote: I'm not disgreeing with that step (of talking to the employer first) or with what you're saying about DOL :D , it's just if you need to know your rights, the correct procedure etc, the DOL can be a good place to start.


Absolutely! 0800 20 90 20.

Kids, beasts, and chillies in Swannanoa South.
www.farmaway.co.nz

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15 years 6 days ago #275893 by Clods
Replied by Clods on topic Having hassle at work
Talk to the manager above her - who do you report to her, or someone else? Talk to a manager above, and if you get now where, then next level up. The higher you go, the more likely something will happen for the better.

I found dealing with HR next to useless. They are not there for you at all, but to represent the company, and protect them, not you. But talking to the right manager and suddenly things start happening.

2 horses, 15 Chickens, 1 goat, 2 pigs, 1 cat

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15 years 6 days ago #275905 by sod
Replied by sod on topic Having hassle at work
Have got our daughter to PM you as HR is her job and has the Quals to talk on this hope it helps God bless keep strong

Having time is a measure of enthusiasm:rolleyes:

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15 years 6 days ago #275906 by moggy
Replied by moggy on topic Having hassle at work
HR policy is either you attempt to resolve the situation informally first, or if not possible then you got to HR as the next step.
I am going to take the line of just asking to move departments (it would be logical that my job was in a different department anyway, of failing that, just ask to be considered for other vacancies in the company. I will try and keep all personal stuff out of it as I realise it is likely to be a I said she said situation (though I have witnesses and have kept records). I also think it will be pointless broaching some of the issues as she has been there a lot longer than I have, and has brown nosed to many in management (pissing off eveyone she works alongsde along the way). So although they may suspect what the problem is, I won't ask them to anything about it - lets face it even if I had her on video tape, I would still have to work with her afterwards and it would not be pleasant.

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15 years 5 days ago #276020 by DiDi
Replied by DiDi on topic Having hassle at work
moggy - having been in this position I would suggest you take the advise given. I was a return to work person with a huge background in voluntary work (including being on the Board of a National Organisation) but had no clue about the way that the paid work place worked.

Initially it was brilliant but people were leaving at a great rate of knots meaning that at times I was doing three people's jobs etc. It was still working within the boundaries of exhaustion until a further really neat person left and they employed this complete twit who had no clue how to do her own job, let alone be a Manager. The only reason she got the position was because no one else (far more qualified) wanted to sit the courses to get the accolade. They just wanted to get on with their jobs!

I gave in and walked after 18 months. In hind sight and knowing so much more now than I did then - I would fight it to the living death now. Just my take on your situation as your job should be something that you do well, enjoy, know you are rewarding your employer and to have that turned upside down by someone else, particulary someone who is not up to standard on the job front is not on. The week I was leaveing, this same person came to me after 9 months in her job and asked me to show her how the computer system worked. Dear God!

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15 years 5 days ago #276036 by moggy
Replied by moggy on topic Having hassle at work
One of my issues with this person is the blatent racism. There is one member (HR dept as it happens but not a personnel person) who is Chinese. Her English is ridiculed. I have been told that she only got the job because she could speak chinese (we are a multi national company). Loads of comments have been made amout how thick she is. I found out today that she is actually a qualified mechanical engineer - hardly a numpty (not that I thought she was anyway).
Occasionally she has mis-understood the subtleties of an email, but instead of the rather brutal email reply back that she gets from my colleague, I have gone to her and explained and the problem is resolved. I have worked with different nationalities before and realise that there are cultural differences, language difference, but it does not mean the person is stupid.
This Chinese person should be coming to my bonfire party tomorrow: I like her a lot.
However this one aspect I could not possibly prove, so pointless bringing it up.

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15 years 5 days ago #276076 by Seaside
Replied by Seaside on topic Having hassle at work
moggy, I can email you some stuff on workplace bullying if you like, definitions, practical advice, case examples (from the Employment Relations Authority) and the like. It's aimed at managers and HR people, but you might find it handy to read. PM if you're interested.

Kids, beasts, and chillies in Swannanoa South.
www.farmaway.co.nz

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