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Old 08-01-17, 11:29 PM
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Arrow How to handle a controlling coworker

I've discussed my pseudo-boss in another thread, and I'm struggling with how to handle her. She's overbearing, controlling and feels the need to comment on many things, from the conversations I have on my cell phone to me pulling out a vacuum cleaner. I received great advice in that thread here, but I'd like to explore this further.

Some of the advice I've been given involved documenting everything. Other advice included me overlooking the issue with her, due to all of the good things about the job.

I work in a call center and I'm good at speaking to people over the phone. I make jokes and say funny things to people. The other day a crank caller called me, and we went back and forth a little bit. The guy in the cubicle next to me said my pseudo-boss pulled that call and listened to it. That same day the guy next to me said that my pseudo boss didn't like something I was saying on the phones, told another coworker, who asked me not to say it.

She makes me angry, and I want to put her in her place so bad. She wasn't always like this. I waiver on flipping out on her or becoming depressed over the issue.
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Last edited by anonymouslyadd; 08-01-17 at 11:43 PM..
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Old 08-01-17, 11:41 PM
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Re: How to handle a controlling coworker

Someothertime wrote this below:

Quote:
O' I wish I had been able to detach a bit more, try stay pragmatic and see these peripheral matters as just that, nod my head and let them blow over...... Resistance even if truth within systems spawns collateral pressures..... just not worth it. ( At least when it effects your livelyhood and day to day enjoyment of the majority of what you do ).....
Kiltedscotsman said this:

Quote:
The idea of "I know this is the right thing to do for the company" is irrelevant to both your co-workers and your bosses. It doesn't matter if you get great sales figures and your customers will pay twice as much to buy from you.

What matters is the underlying subconscious interactions. The organisational psychologist Berne said there are two levels of interaction... the overt which is what we consciously hear (and sometimes see), and the "ulterior" which happens at a subconscious level. He said the outcome of the interaction is DEFINED by the ULTERIOR PROCESS.

This means that you can do great things and boost the organisation as much as you want.... if you ignore the ulterior transactions of your peers you will eventually be disciplined/fired.
Pilgrim said this:

Quote:
I couldn't agree more about what Kilted just said. Those ulterior motives are really what makes those situations tick.

I remember a friend saying to me once, ' those people done up in a pretty bow ' are always to be weary of.

I hope this helps but make yourself as small a target as possible. A good thing is that she is really not your boss. I've sort of always lived by the mantra anything you say will be used against you. I've also learned of late, if you end to defend yourself do so with grace. Goodluck.
Sarahsweets said this:

Quote:
Since your actual boss thinks you are doing fine and because he told you to ignore the fake boss, then any further interaction with the fake boss should always be documented, even if you write down the date,time, and subject of your interactions. You want to protect yourself. Anything you can get thats solid, like emails, notes etc. should be kept in a file so you can show your actual boss. Did your boss tell you what to do when she gets involved in your business? Its one thing to tell you to ignore her, but you need to know what to do when you have to deal with her.
Acdc01 said this:


Quote:
I'd personally let it go for now but if she seems ****** off at you again, I'd personally go to your boss again and ask if there is a way to make her understand she's not responsible for you and your actions so she doesn't have to provide any instructions or supervise you(aka she's not your boss, butt out). I'd also say "like maybe say blah blah blah to her". Basically, feed him the exact words you recommend so he has a better chance of handling the situation right this time. He should say things in a way that doesn't upset her, makes her feel like she's in trouble, or let her know that you ratted her out to your boss.
Acdc01 added this too:

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Making her understand you've got things covered isn't just about showing her your results. My mom uswd to never feel safe when I was helping her sell a car or house while she felt perfectly safe with my sister. It's not cause my sister has better results than me. It's cause my sister thinks much more similarly to the way my mom thinks than I do. So she feels assured my sister will do what is best which in her mind is what she herself would do. That said, she now is less scared of me cause by now, she's seen my results more after all these years. You could also make sure your pseudo boss sees your results but do it in a way that doesn't seem like you are bragging.
Pilgrim added this too:

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I've seen people keep there job although they are horrible to get along with.
Try to put her out of your mind, it won't help dwelling on her.
Your boss won't do anything, or say anything to her, in regards to this incident.

There is much more to this situation but I found that when I put all my energy into the performance side of work this was a mistake. Cause when I'm fatigued that's when I'm likely to have a problem with someone. I always performed but stopped making it the be all and end all.
Kiltedscotsman added this too:


Quote:
One of the things that is useful is the "Life Positions" (aka Ernst's "OK Corral") in it's simplest form this says that the place to be is to feel that "I'm OK, You're OK" even when confronted by illogical behaviour..... be cause there are reasons for the odd behaviour that make some kind of sense in the world of the person doing them.
Sarahsweets added this too:

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I dont think there is anything wrong with getting your real boss to clarify the chain of command. It shows you are interested in the company and your place in it. Once you know for sure that she has little to nothing to do with your place as an employee you can answer everything she says to you "Thanks for your feedback, Ill think about that."
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Old 08-02-17, 12:10 AM
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Re: How to handle a controlling coworker

I'd be very interested to know how things look from her perspective.

Can you put yourself in her place and imagine it?

That could maybe help you get a better handle on the situation.
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Old 08-02-17, 12:14 AM
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Re: How to handle a controlling coworker

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Originally Posted by namazu View Post
I'd be very interested to know how things look from her perspective.

Can you put yourself in her place and imagine it?

That could maybe help you get a better handle on the situation.
Well, she's probably upset about me not realizing that she's my boss. My coworker said that they don't like people questioning them. I understand that. I think she's a very insecure person and needs to control things in order to make herself feel better. Why the hell am I listening to her?

What worries me is that she comes across as a devoted, hard-working employee, which is probably true. However, she's also driven by her need to control things.

You should have heard her handling a potential fraud cause. She was like a pit bull. She's very good at pointing out the negative.
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Old 08-02-17, 12:23 AM
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Re: How to handle a controlling coworker

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Why the hell am I listening to her?
Maybe because she's your (pseudo-?)boss, and you want this job, and she's not asking you to do anything unethical, immoral, or harmful? (Is she?)
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Old 08-02-17, 12:24 AM
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Re: How to handle a controlling coworker

While she's pointing out all of my mistakes, there are items that she's supposed to be getting to our group but hasn't. She and the old COO did this all the time. They would promise things and not follow through.
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Old 08-02-17, 12:29 AM
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Re: How to handle a controlling coworker

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Maybe because she's your (pseudo-?)boss, and you want this job, and she's not asking you to do anything unethical, immoral, or harmful? (Is she?)
That's true.
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Old 08-02-17, 12:48 AM
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Re: How to handle a controlling coworker

When I was a kid, I was never taught how to handle someone who said something that bothered me. My stepdad said to ignore it, but my mom disagreed. She seemed to want to focus on it. Moreover, I was never taught to just let things go. I don't know if other people here have that struggle. She's not even my friend! Who cares what she says?
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Old 08-02-17, 03:22 AM
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Re: How to handle a controlling coworker

Whatever happens don't let this take away the energy you are using right now, to be doing well at your job!

They probably really need someone like this, an organized controlling pitbull type.

Is she like this with everyone? If yes, than really dont give it much more thought and just act "professional" around her.
(not that you aren't professional! )

its a balance of not engaging with her if possible but not acting emotional and defensive, when you do.
the weird parts are running into someone like that unexpectedly in the hallway or coffee machine and just trying to say "hello" , normally.
the most awkward is if I am fixing my makeup and our HR manager comes in the bathroom to rinse her tea cup.

I say this because she is like this. Yet, I am the assistant to HER boss. So i have this kind of "immunity". Yet I often feel a wave of disapproval if I am a bit scattered (she sometimes calls me to see about when certain meetings are scheduled).
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Old 08-02-17, 09:19 AM
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Re: How to handle a controlling coworker

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Whatever happens don't let this take away the energy you are using right now, to be doing well at your job!
Good point. I'm really trying to not let this get me down!
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They probably really need someone like this, an organized controlling pitbull type.
This is probably true. She does have value and a very important job.
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Is she like this with everyone? If yes, than really dont give it much more thought and just act "professional" around her.
(not that you aren't professional! )
Kind of. It seems a little more extreme in my case, though.
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Old 08-02-17, 10:07 PM
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Re: How to handle a controlling coworker

I confirmed that she can't fire me, but she's more of an authority figure than I realized.

Background:
I called a meeting with the sales team (three) about one of us being a liaison between our company and one of our partners. The pseudo-boss was the liaison, with a ton of responsibility. The purpose of that meeting was to talk about one of us being the liaison instead of the pseudo-boss. Then, I was going to talk the pseudo-boss, which I did and ask her if one of us could be the liaison and not her.

She thought that she should have been part of the first meeting. I didn't agree with that. I get what I did wrong.
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Old 08-05-17, 03:57 PM
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Re: How to handle a controlling coworker

I use an app called send out cards to send people personal cards that they receive in the mail. I've sent many of these to my customers, and they enjoy them. With recent events that have occurred with my pseudo-boss, I'm questioning whether I should send them or not. I need advice on that.

My pseudo-boss has basically told me not to send them out, because we have to have the company name on them. What she doesn't know is that I have a way of printing the company name on the back of the card.

There's a holiday coming up, and I'd like to send a batch of cards to some of my best customers. After the two and a half hour meeting and another meeting this past week, I'm worried about sending them.

Should I not send them? Should I just go above the pseudo-boss and talk to the president about it?
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Old 08-05-17, 04:23 PM
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Re: How to handle a controlling coworker

I wouldn't send them unless she knows you can print the company name on them and she approves it.

I wouldn't go over her head to inquire about something she has made clear isn't cool to do, especially with all the other stuff that's been going on. It would be adding unnecessary fuel to the fire.

You might have missed your opportunity to have it approved when you didn't readily mention how you can and have been printing the company name on them. Do they offer any type of company post card or note cards you can use in place of the app you're currently using?

A good old fashioned hand written thank you note should make some good impressions, too. What's the company policy on interacting with customers outside of the actual transactions taking place, especially regarding follow-up and holiday correspondence, etc. like you're using?
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Old 08-05-17, 04:23 PM
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Re: How to handle a controlling coworker

Quote:
Originally Posted by anonymouslyadd View Post
I use an app called send out cards to send people personal cards that they receive in the mail. I've sent many of these to my customers, and they enjoy them. With recent events that have occurred with my pseudo-boss, I'm questioning whether I should send them or not. I need advice on that.

My pseudo-boss has basically told me not to send them out, because we have to have the company name on them. What she doesn't know is that I have a way of printing the company name on the back of the card.

There's a holiday coming up, and I'd like to send a batch of cards to some of my best customers. After the two and a half hour meeting and another meeting this past week, I'm worried about sending them.

Should I not send them? Should I just go above the pseudo-boss and talk to the president about it?
See what the one above the pseudo (sp) boss says
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Old 08-05-17, 04:27 PM
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Re: How to handle a controlling coworker

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I wouldn't send them unless she knows you can print the company name on them and she approves it.

I wouldn't go over her head to inquire about something she has made clear isn't cool to do, especially with all the other stuff that's been going on. It would be adding unnecessary fuel to the fire.

You might have missed your opportunity to have it approved when you didn't readily mention how you can and have been printing the company name on them. Do they offer any type of company post card or note cards you can use in place of the app you're currently using?
I hate this lady! I'm doing things that I've learned from very successful sales people, and I get flack every ******* step of the way. I didn't realize the branding stuff that you could do.

We have a new president, who's never seen the app before. Couldn't I justify the meeting because he would need to approve it?
Quote:
A good old fashioned hand written thank you note should make some good impressions, too. What's the company policy on interacting with customers outside of the actual transactions taking place, especially regarding follow-up and holiday correspondence, etc. like you're using?
Hand written cards are great but when you can send real cards to 15 people in 15 minutes, it's hard to justify doing the alternative. Also, the app is more affordable to use than the hand-written method. I can send a card for less than the cost of going to Hallmark, purchasing a card and then placing a stamp on it.
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Last edited by anonymouslyadd; 08-05-17 at 04:42 PM..
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