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  1. #1
    Join Date
    Jul. 15, 2006
    Location
    VA
    Posts
    815

    Default Big Deal or Not?

    Let me see if I can explain this. I work in a union position, my husband was promoted to a non union manager last September. Previous to this he worked in the same type of union position I have, just for a different division. Since being hired as a manger he was moved to another division, because it would be unethical for him to be my boss (I am pretty happy about this actually) and for the record, we have been together since before either of us worked for this company, so we didn't meet here.

    Ok thats the background, in December I took a job as a Lead on another team and the short 2 months that I have been there I have already been thrown under the bus to our supervisor. One of the things that has been brought up is me calling my husband to ask him technical questions, which on my previous team was not a big deal, and they sometimes asked me to call him (he is pretty smart guy) I have also called other people to answer technical questions that I have no relation to.
    I was reprimanded for calling him without going through the proper channels ( I should have called my foreman, then my supervisor, then if we all couldn't find a good answer, I could call my husband) I said no problem, I don't want to make anyone feel uncomfortable, and since this conversation with supervision they have actually asked me to call him for a thing or two.
    This week I hear through the grapevine that I still call him everyday for everything and it is still being reported to supervision. I am beyond pissed, I feel personally attacked. We do usually chat for a minute at lunch time because we don't get to see each other much and that few minutes during lunch is a nice breather/vent/smile for both of us. I do not call him for technical advise and really I didn't call him all the much before, just on certain things that were in his specialty.
    I am kinda at a loss what to do, yes we have an ethics hotline that I could call, but really I kind of feel like I am making a mountain out of a molehill. It is the personal nature of this that makes me the most upset, and really as a girl out here in a guys world, I feel like it had better be a really big problem for me to call that hotline. I know the hotline is supposed to be confidential, but people always find out, or assume and perception is often reality.

    Advise appreciated
    Railgirl.blogspot.com



  2. #2
    Join Date
    May. 14, 2008
    Posts
    285

    Default

    I think it could be a big deal. We have this problem where I am at. Different departments, same division but the departments work directly with each other.

    Here, the office people should only be contacting the PM's directly, but one of the office members husband is essentially a laborer. So, instead of contacting the PM for advice/direction, she calls her husband. It's an attempt to try and make herself look more capable at her job. Then the PM gets mad, first because whatever was communicated between husband/wife never made it to him and lots and lots and lots of times, its just plain wrong information or could be right but husband doesnt have all the information.

    The dynamic is weird because underlying all of this is the simple fact that husband doesnt get along with the PM. Obviously wife is going to stick by husband, so PM an wife dont get along either. Seriously its a mess and I never would have taken this job knowing what kind of situation was developing.

    But, it boils down to someone is jealous and is trying to throw you under the bus. The best way they can do this, is to make you look like you are not knowledgeable (without your husband) to perform your job. Perhaps, someone else interviewed for your job?


    1 members found this post helpful.

  3. #3
    Join Date
    Jan. 26, 2006
    Location
    Fort Worth, Texas
    Posts
    4,122

    Default

    looking at this from a balance sheet aspect; if one division has not funded a program to an acceptable level why should the assets of another division be used

    I have been an upper level manager in a multilevel manufacturing and distribution operation whereas there are specific lines drawn as who is responsible for what and which division pays for that... each profit center was responsible for its own costs.



  4. #4
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    May. 14, 2008
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    285

    Default

    I agree with Clanter but it doesnt sound like this is on the management leve, it an employee that is saying something. Management may get involved in that avenue but....



  5. #5
    Join Date
    Jul. 15, 2006
    Location
    VA
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    Default

    Thanks guys, it has proven to be akward for us as well which is why I was so quick to agree with my supervisor about calling him. I should have also pointed out that he also calls me with questions, but that hasn't come up as being a problem. I think superalter may be close with her jealousy assesment and sadly it is probably from the 1 other girl that works out here or some of the younger guys that are jealous that I do have such a good source of information at home and they feel that it is unfair. When I do something well, or figure something out on my own I get comments like "well dh probably told you how" or something similar.
    They are right that I have a good source of info at home, and I make every effort to learn everything I can about my job and the systems we install. I also read everything I can about these systems.
    I have applied for two other jobs, one in another department and one in our current department but at a higher level to get out of this little mess, because this is one I am not sure I can ignore, and if everything I do learn is just because of dh it will become an issue.
    I also know in my head that this is probably only coming from the few aforementioned people above, so if I don't get offered the positions (or the offered salary is to low, odd for a move up, but generally true) I will continue to do the best job I can and hope I won't have to defend myself to much
    Railgirl.blogspot.com



  6. #6
    Join Date
    May. 14, 2008
    Posts
    285

    Default

    Do you have authority over these people? Allowing comments like that, regardless of authority or not is unacceptable and you have every right to nip that in the butt. Depending on structure, contact HR and have the issue addressed. Its only going to get worse. If you feel comfortable enough to address it yourself I would do so.

    If you continue to let those off hand comments continue the situation will escalate and your reputation is at stake.

    It sounds like it is definatly a jealousy issue.



  7. #7
    Join Date
    Jul. 15, 2006
    Location
    VA
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    Default

    Authority over? Kind of over some of them, no to others. I am a Leadman on a construction gang, but the foreman (who also makes these comments, even though he has called dh for help before) no I do not. This foreman was in the meeting with our supervisor and I did address it then. I have also addressed it with my team and I thought things were getting better, but after this past week I am not so sure.
    This is a situation that is new to me, and to most out here so I try to be patient with it, but this really feels like a personal attack and I am trying to find the best way to handle it, as I know reputation counts for a lot. I guess that was what I was looking for in my orginal post, a good way to get a handle on it before it becomes to bad.
    Railgirl.blogspot.com



  8. #8
    Join Date
    May. 14, 2008
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    285

    Default

    I am assuming you are a women working in construction obviously, a male dominated field.

    It sure does put a spin on things. While it should not be an issue it is. You are a women and they are men. You know, the whole hear me roar thing.

    And it IS a personal attack. I think you face a long road ahead of you. It simply boils down to the fact you are a women and they may not feel it is your place to be working along side them.

    Sounds like most of them are of the type " women should be barefoot and in the kitchen".

    Putting this spin on it, I think you might have yourself a lawsuit. You know, if you are the sue happy kind.

    And I really dont think its going to get better in the near future. Constuction men need a certain type of handling and I dont believe it is they type where tact is involved.

    I have worked in the male dominated contstruction field for 10 years. No, not a long time in the grand scheme but long enough to know that F bombs are common occurance.



  9. #9
    Join Date
    Apr. 29, 2006
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    3,308

    Default

    If he weren't your husband, what would you do? Would you go through the proper channels? If that is what is part of your job, as asinine as it seems, you need to follow protocol.



  10. #10
    Join Date
    Feb. 3, 2005
    Location
    Southern Ontario
    Posts
    894

    Default

    Your company should be applauding you for cutting out the middleman, getting an answer asap, instead of asking this one, then that one, and another one, only to be asked to consult your husband. Time IS money!



  11. #11
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    Jul. 15, 2006
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    VA
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    Default

    Come Shine, I would do what I do now, call the best person that I believe can answer that question. My job involves constrution, electrical compotents, computer compoents, communications components etc. If it has to do with electricity I call him, if I have a question about backhoes or the best way to do something with them my foreman is a great resource, etc. I know a lot about the movement of trains and the rules governing them so I get a lot of calls about those topics.
    Railgirl.blogspot.com



  12. #12
    Join Date
    Feb. 20, 2010
    Location
    All 'round Canadia
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    4,623

    Default

    I agree, potentially a big deal. There are really 2 issues, you going outside the chain of command/prof tech chain to call him directly, which was fine in your other team but not fine in this one, possibly because others are jealous but more likely than not also because he now is management.
    That has been dealt with between you and the supervisor and should've been the end of it.

    The second issue is the rumors. I would actually either talk to or write a brief note to your supervisor, just saying that you have recently become aware of a rumor that you continue to step outside the CoC to call your husband, and reiterate that since the first conversation with the super you have not done so. No naming names, no saying how upset you are, just that you heard that some people think/say this and that it isn't true. I'd lean towards putting it on paper, and making it clear that you're following the super's direction re: calling hubby.


    1 members found this post helpful.

  13. #13
    Join Date
    May. 12, 2008
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    4,004

    Default

    Quote Originally Posted by MMacallister View Post
    Authority over? Kind of over some of them, no to others. I am a Leadman on a construction gang, but the foreman (who also makes these comments, even though he has called dh for help before) no I do not. This foreman was in the meeting with our supervisor and I did address it then. I have also addressed it with my team and I thought things were getting better, but after this past week I am not so sure.
    This is a situation that is new to me, and to most out here so I try to be patient with it, but this really feels like a personal attack and I am trying to find the best way to handle it, as I know reputation counts for a lot. I guess that was what I was looking for in my orginal post, a good way to get a handle on it before it becomes to bad.
    Spinning this around, other may feel it is a personal attack also. As someone else postulated - what would you do if you were not married to your husband? What would you do if you did not know him? With you being new to the department, some people may feel you think they do not know anything and feel threatened by your lack of willingness to go to them with issues.

    Calling your husband and, in the course of conversation, complaining about anything about work may also be especially threatening to someone else. It may be seen as gossiping with a fellow coworker, rather than just venting to a friend/spouse. Sometimes you have to do things differently, for a while, because of perception.


    1 members found this post helpful.

  14. #14
    Join Date
    Apr. 29, 2006
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    3,308

    Default

    Quote Originally Posted by MMacallister View Post
    Come Shine, I would do what I do now, call the best person that I believe can answer that question.
    Lol. In a logical world, that would, of course, make the most sense. However, we don't live in a logical world. We live in a world governed by bizarre managerial processes that are put in place to justify the managerial positions that are needed to enforce the asinine rules.

    Create a flow sheet for your desk about who you need to call before you call your husband to ask anything. Tick the boxes and have a piece of chocolate (I was going to say a glass of wine but then realized you would probably get very drunk doing this!) at the end of the day for every box you tick.

    If you don't like the process, you need to work to change it at the management level, not just expect they will accommodate you because it's a logical and sensible course of action.



  15. #15
    Join Date
    Jul. 15, 2006
    Location
    VA
    Posts
    815

    Default

    Quote Originally Posted by Come Shine View Post
    Lol. In a logical world, that would, of course, make the most sense. However, we don't live in a logical world. We live in a world governed by bizarre managerial processes that are put in place to justify the managerial positions that are needed to enforce the asinine rules.

    Create a flow sheet for your desk about who you need to call before you call your husband to ask anything. Tick the boxes and have a piece of chocolate (I was going to say a glass of wine but then realized you would probably get very drunk doing this!) at the end of the day for every box you tick.

    If you don't like the process, you need to work to change it at the management level, not just expect they will accommodate you because it's a logical and sensible course of action.
    LOL I am going to have to buy stock in Hershey!
    Railgirl.blogspot.com



  16. #16
    Join Date
    Jun. 25, 2004
    Location
    Carolinas
    Posts
    4,602

    Default

    First follow the protocol in your new department. This is a new group and you should work with them. Not easy when you have people who think you are lacking at best - have dealt with that in several postions. Have to proudly admit most of those same doubters missed me when I moved to better positions.

    Limit work conversations with hubby. Keep your current process of increasing your knowledge and try to build relationships within your team. There is usually someone who stays out of the politics, build a relationship there. You may find one of your current teammates is as knowledgeable as your DH.

    Two of the many reasons people snipe - you scare them with your knowledge or you don't appear to respect or want to be part of the team. If you scare them - that is their problem. If you don't respect them or want to part of the team - that is on you.
    "Never do anything that you have to explain twice to the paramedics."
    Courtesy my cousin Tim


    1 members found this post helpful.

  17. #17
    Join Date
    Dec. 4, 2005
    Location
    washington state
    Posts
    6,846

    Default

    If you are union you should be discussing this with your Shop Steward (union rep), they can give you advice and guidance on what would be best. You may end up grieving the other employee or it could be worked out in another fashion.

    Also, your company and union bargaining agreement have set policies and procedures for accomplishing work. You calling hubbie is most likely not in that agreement or policy The company calls the shots, and until you are in a position to decide or implement policy, follow the policy in place even if it seems like double work or "too much middle man" or a time/money saver.
    The Knotted Pony

    Proud and upstanding member of the Snort and Blow Clique.



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