When Winnie talks about work, as she did in the last column, you can tell that her perception is that she has a problem team. She feels like she’s trying to lead a bunch of blamers, complainers, plus one aggressive smarty-pants!
That aggressive thorn in her side is Winston. He’s young and bright, and in Winnie’s estimation, he’s out to get her. How does Winston see the situation?
This article is one in a series about the workplace You can find the first article in the series here.
Till recently, Winston loved work. He’s been an excellent employee, recognized for his eagerness and ideas. Now, however, he’s lost his enthusiasm, and is seriously considering looking elsewhere. What happened?
“Ever since I got moved to this new team, I’m not appreciated. With my old team, we felt like we were all working together. The boss would listen to anything we’d suggest to make things better. Even a bad idea—at least he’d listen. He said that even bad ideas meant that we were thinking.”
“Now, when I say anything, I’m a troublemaker. We’re working with an outdated computer system where we have to enter the same information over and over. It’s no wonder we fall behind. I told the boss that replacing that system would make us more efficient, and she just about tore my head off! I tell you, she’s out to get me now. I’m never suggesting anything again; I’ll just keep my head down and do my job.”
“Everybody’s working as fast as they can, and she’ll come around snapping, ‘Get a move on; we’re behind schedule.’ How would we work faster? Or she’ll say, ‘You’re doing that wrong’ but you never learn what’s right. Honestly, I don’t think she could do the job herself the way she thinks we’re supposed to.”
“When she’s not telling us what we’re supposed to be doing, she’s writing up a bunch of new rules and procedures. No more swapping shifts with your buddy, no flexibility in time off, and if you’re calling in sick, you’d better be feeling some pain! All that says to me is that she doesn’t trust us.”
“It’s frustrating. I’ve talked to other bosses to see if I can get on a different team. If not, I’ll probably leave; our team’s going nowhere. I feel bad for the people with families to support though; they can’t pick up and leave like me. It’s scary for them.”
“Everything seems to come easily for other teams. Take Sandy’s team; they do the same work as us, they all work hard, but they’re always on top of things. They’re proud of what they do. They even look happy. Why can’t our team be like that? There’s nothing I can do, but I wish our boss would talk to Sandy and learn how it’s done.”
What do you think? Is there really nothing Winston can do? Is Winnie in control? What could make this situation better?
The next article in this series is here.