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Difficult colleague

#1 Difficult colleague
04/03/2013 20:41


Ok folks, need some opinion here.

Should you tell your manager about difficult colleague and how their actions are detrimental to team work ?

I have a colleague who is difficult but behaves exactly opposite in front of manager and in meetings. Should I expose him/ her, how do I best handle ?

In an old employment few years back I had a similar situation, I had then disclosed to my manager the differences between me and a colleague. My manager at that point raised this to the other person and then we had a chat between three of us.

This actually aggravated the differences. Eventually my manager was like he needs to deliver and cannot have two people fighting in the team and asked us to sort it out between us. Eventually I was moved to another project. And The other person resigned in a month!!!!!. This was in a consultancy.

Now I am working in industry and have the same situation. Dont want to repeat any previous mistakes and hence asking for opinion here.

What do you think?

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#2 RE: Difficult colleague
05/03/2013 08:44

marsday to konsultant (#1)

Depends on what you mean by 'difficult'. And I wonder if this is really a matter of your perception of 'difficult'?

End of the day you cannot expect to get along with everyone, and everyone has their own agenda. They probably also see you as 'difficult'.

Rather than running off to tell teacher you need to sort this out directly if at all possible. Try a non-confrontational approach, perhaps go for a beer or something, and raise the difficulties. You need to frame things in the context of 'we' not 'you' i.e. we aren't seeing eye to eye on x, what's our best way forward on this?' etc not ' you are being difficult'.

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#3 RE: Difficult colleague
05/03/2013 14:21

Mr Cool to marsday (#2)

First and foremost tells us what they are doing that feel is "difficult"

....could be you? How would we know.

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#4 RE: Difficult colleague
05/03/2013 14:29

DiamondSea to Mr Cool (#3)

Have a "difficult" conversation with the "difficult" and record it without him knowing, so you have evidence to prove he is difficult. Or that you are maybe :D

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#5 RE: Difficult colleague
05/03/2013 14:40

$0.02 to DiamondSea (#4)

Not a statistically significant sample, but in the 2 instances described, there does seem to be one common denominator....

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#6 RE: Difficult colleague
05/03/2013 15:42

konsultant to $0.02 (#5)


If I go into what 'difficult' here means then I could go on forever. But think along the lines of trying to be the leader in the team, not involving in crucial communications etc.

And I am only talking of one person in the team...Dont have an issue with anyone else.

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#7 RE: Difficult colleague
05/03/2013 16:37

Mr Cool to konsultant (#6)

Hi everyone, I'd really value your advice on something that I'm right about and a colleague of mine is wrong about. I am keen to come back here to read your comments on how you agree that I'm right, but I don't have time to give you any details.

If you could just all tell me that I'm right to regard my colleague as bossy and not in fact a natural leader that would be great.

If you could also tell me that my boss will really appreciate me adding to his workload by whining about the firm stupidly hiring an alpha type that would be great too.

I'm sure if I just get this one person out of my way all the other people I work with will work together in perfect harmony and respect.

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#8 RE: Difficult colleague
05/03/2013 16:41

tom1 to Mr Cool (#7)

Mr Cool + 1

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#9 RE: Difficult colleague
05/03/2013 17:32

$0.02 to tom1 (#8)

Mr Cool forgot to add:

I have done this before and it didn't work out so well but this time it will be different.

Right after "If you could also tell me that my boss...."

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#10 RE: Difficult colleague
06/03/2013 08:01

noel to $0.02 (#9)

Read 'Office Politics' by Oliver James

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#11 RE: Difficult colleague
06/03/2013 13:16

Arby the Manager to noel (#10)

Everyone behaves differently in front of a Manager - it's normal.

Alpha types will try and be the leader - it's normal.

I honestly think here you are the aggrevating factor. You should either grow a pair and be "Alpha Dog" number 1 in the pack, or take your handbag and find another, gentler place to work where no one will be howible to you....

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#12 RE: Difficult colleague
07/03/2013 23:17

DiamondSea to Arby the Manager (#11)

I personally refuse to believe that everybody acts differently in front of the manager, I for one don't.

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#13 RE: Difficult colleague
08/03/2013 08:14

Eng to DiamondSea (#12)

Yes they do, and then criticise the manager behind their back.

man I hate office politics!

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#14 RE: Difficult colleague
08/03/2013 08:52

Bushy Eyebrow Partner to Eng (#13)

I become extraordinarily obsequious when around some of my favourite Public Sector clients. I have learnt that the Public Sector is all about looking and acting like you're really enthusiastic about it, then doing the bare minimum to scrape through the next meeting. The only thing I will not tolderate and which does make me angry (even in front of clients) is when I find out a client is abusing the goodwill of one of our juniors by giving them deadlines for Monday mornings, that kind of thing. These young folk are our future and we should treat them with respect.

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