How to handle trouble makers at work

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  #1  
Old 09-05-08, 04:30 PM
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How to handle trouble makers at work

I have a freind who has a potential problem with a trouble maker at work.
For some reason a long term employee has got her number.
This person is a rat and my freind needs to be smart and not get sucked in because she'll look like the jerk if she responds to the antagonisms of this employee.
The offender knows that what they do drives my freind nuts but so far has been going along with it and pretending it doesn't bother her as not to cause a seen in the office or create bad sentiment and retribution and bad office politics can be a career ender.

The offender is also liked by the head manager.

Hind sight is always 20/20 and my freind has delt poorly with these situations in the past.

This time she's NOT reacting to the offender and hope it will just go away before she has to say something.
The wrong words in these situations live on much longer well after the incident has been forgotten.

What is the best way to give the rat a way out and she not having to make an issue of it.

The offense is not serious but is very distracting and causes disorganization of my freinds work area.
 

Last edited by Mackey; 09-05-08 at 05:45 PM.
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  #2  
Old 09-05-08, 05:20 PM
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I don't think you are going to get much help with this. It is a very delicate problem to deal with. Cant go to the main boss, she would sound like a tattletale for a small problem. The problem should be handled face to face. But then they would know it bothers her more than she let on. There is no easy way out this situation. She can ether let it go, or talk face to face with the one causing the trouble.

If this is in some kind of cubical. Maybe she could put up a divider to block the distraction. Or maybe move to a different room,desk,or cubical.
This is just my opinion.

Travis
 
  #3  
Old 09-05-08, 06:15 PM
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And without knowing details...which we don't need!

If it's just stupid things like moving little things around or putting things in different spots from what they should be....just let 'em sit there! When you are done, put 'em back in the wrong spot. I know, seems like a pain, but bullys are stupid and get bored easily.

The other way is to publicly, in a breakroom or similar, loudly tell the offender,(in the sweetest nicest way, with hopefully sympathetic or neutral people around), that you'd appreciate it very much if they wouldn't do those things, as it makes getting the work done harder and you hate to make problems for anyone else down the feeding chain.

I used "you" just because I didn't feel like saying tell your friend over and over.
 
  #4  
Old 09-06-08, 11:41 AM
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If your friend is a woman and the "problems" are in any way sexual in nature she has an excellent chance of curbing the problem. It doesn't need to be a man "harassing" a woman, it can be another woman. It works the same way with men too but it is less commonly applied.

Anyway, if the above is true your friend needs to first go to the immediate supervisor and lodge a formal complaint. Your friend needs to document with date and time when they made the complaint to the immediate supervisor and if within a week nothing has changed then go to the second-line supervisor and repeat the complaint, again documenting the time date and the supervisor's name along with a brief synopsis of the the complaint and the supervisor's comments.

If there is no action after talking to the second-line supervisor (or if there is no second-line supervisor) then your friend may take the matter to the government. Harassment on the job is no little matter and there are sever penalties for any company or manager within a company that tolerates harassment.
 
  #5  
Old 09-06-08, 06:31 PM
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Originally Posted by furd View Post
If your friend is a woman and the "problems" are in any way sexual in nature she has an excellent chance of curbing the problem. It doesn't need to be a man "harassing" a woman, it can be another woman. It works the same way with men too but it is less commonly applied.

Anyway, if the above is true your friend needs to first go to the immediate supervisor and lodge a formal complaint. Your friend needs to document with date and time when they made the complaint to the immediate supervisor and if within a week nothing has changed then go to the second-line supervisor and repeat the complaint, again documenting the time date and the supervisor's name along with a brief synopsis of the the complaint and the supervisor's comments.

If there is no action after talking to the second-line supervisor (or if there is no second-line supervisor) then your friend may take the matter to the government. Harassment on the job is no little matter and there are sever penalties for any company or manager within a company that tolerates harassment.
Not sexual but I wonder if the offender is doing this to gain my friends attention in sick kind of way.
I kinow of the offender and that person has an EXTREMELY annoying personality that thrives on attention which yeilds the opposite.
The world needs more shrinks.
 
  #6  
Old 09-06-08, 07:07 PM
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tell your friend that she needs to set up a meeting with her supervisor and this person to talk about this, she needs to take good notes of everything that has happened and ask firmly but politely that it stop, otherwise it could escalate in to more overt harassment.

Murphy was an optimist
 
  #7  
Old 09-06-08, 08:34 PM
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I disagree with Speedwrench. The person "causing" the harassment (and that's what it is) should NOT be present when your friend speaks to the supervisor. The supervisor needs to get the story independently from each of the parties in an atmosphere free from any implied or real intimidation. That cannot happen if BOTH parties are present.

Now after the supervisor gets both side of the story the supervisor must make a decision as to the veracity of BOTH stories. If the supervisor believes the smallest bit of harassment (and it need not be sexual) has taken place then a hostile work environment exists. The supervisor has the responsibility to go to the person creating the hostility and demanding that it stop. The supervisor should also document all meetings with the affected employees and should make a report to the 2nd line supervisor detailing the original complaint, his/her findings and the action taken.

If the first line supervisor does NOT do these things in a reasonable time frame the aggrieved party (your friend) needs to see the second line supervisor and detail both the initial harassment AND the lack of action on the part of the first line supervisor.

If neither of these work the next step is to contact the human relations (or personnel) manager. If that fails then contact an attorney who specializes in employment law.
 
  #8  
Old 09-06-08, 10:47 PM
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There is usually no perfect "answer" other than to start trying some of the solutions listed above and likely a combination of actions will get a result your friend can live with. Your friend's antagonist may just bring the game to another level if they get directly challenged. Some people live to do daily battle at work! Reccomend a few subtle trial challenges to gauge results.
 
  #9  
Old 09-08-08, 03:54 PM
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I'm not sure if this is relevant, but one job I worked at several years ago, someone was stealing lunches. I decided to mess with this person's head by making tuna sandwiches with one special addition (red pepper flakes). The next day my snadwiches were stolen by a girl and it was rather obvious. her face was sweating something fierce and it was hilarious seeing her run to the water cooler and trying to guzzle the water. Thank you for giving me a chuckle as I recalled this story.
 
  #10  
Old 09-09-08, 07:02 PM
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Originally Posted by nightowlpunk View Post
I decided to mess with this person's head by making tuna sandwiches with one special addition (red pepper flakes).
Great story nightowlpunk!!!!!


Today I got an update from my freind.

The offender struck again and MY friend just said "Please Don't Do That Anymore".

So we shall see what happens now.
 
  #11  
Old 09-25-08, 04:16 AM
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Originally Posted by Mackey View Post
Great story nightowlpunk!!!!!


Today I got an update from my freind.

The offender struck again and MY friend just said "Please Don't Do That Anymore".

So we shall see what happens now.
any update from your friend.
 
  #12  
Old 09-25-08, 04:47 AM
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Furd: I supervised 180 workers in an operation at the Atlanta Airport for a number of years (until my senses kicked in), and whenever a complaint or problem ever came up and I detected the person was going to slam another one, I immediately called the other party to the office. Facing the accuser did more than my intervention. It usually ended right then and there without conflict. I still let them know the problem was over under no uncertain terms and they usually got the message. If it got really heated, I just called the shop steward in and let them hash it out. Worked great.
 
  #13  
Old 10-16-08, 06:47 PM
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Originally Posted by chandler View Post
Furd: I supervised 180 workers in an operation at the Atlanta Airport for a number of years (until my senses kicked in), and whenever a complaint or problem ever came up and I detected the person was going to slam another one, I immediately called the other party to the office. Facing the accuser did more than my intervention. It usually ended right then and there without conflict. I still let them know the problem was over under no uncertain terms and they usually got the message. If it got really heated, I just called the shop steward in and let them hash it out. Worked great.
As someone who has worked most of their life in "the shop" (me) and now work in an office, what works in "the shop" definatley does not work in an office but I know what you're saying.
 
  #14  
Old 10-16-08, 06:50 PM
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Originally Posted by flirty1 View Post
any update from your friend.
Yes, all is cool now.

The offender stopped it and is now friends with my friend.

How about that!

A happy ending.
 
  #15  
Old 10-17-08, 04:17 AM
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I agree with the "shop" thing. I was in operations and disavowed any connection to the "office" people. Different breed. We "got things done" full speed ahead, hair on fire, ten feet tall and bulletproof. They were still trying to figure out how to do it on paper after it was over.
Glad things are working out.
 
  #16  
Old 10-22-08, 01:09 AM
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Originally Posted by Mackey View Post
Yes, all is cool now.

The offender stopped it and is now friends with my friend.

How about that!

A happy ending.
thats great no more problems
 
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