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"I decided to tally who was doing what so my Boss could have numbers and not just my "feelings" of being overworked...."
I work in a small laboratory of four women, including myself. I brought to my bosses attention on numerous occasions that my co-workers on day shift were not doing as much work as myself. My boss defended their actions and excuses. I then decided to go to the archive of records and tally who was doing what. I did this so she could have numbers and not just my "feelings" of being overworked. Since then, my coworkers have been giving me attitude and not talking to me. I, in return stopped talking to them.
Well, obviously the communication breakdown was apparent
and now all of us have had a meeting regarding communication. I was
verbally attacked in the meeting and feel like I am the scapegoat. everything
is being blamed on me. This is my first job out of college, so I am
not aware of how to deal with
Relations with co-workers can be trickier than relations with managers. Every workplace has a culture of norms and expectations. Written job descriptions may reflect some of this, but much of it is simply "understood" and it can take time for a new employee to learn what is expected.
It sounds like you have challenged the established order of things in your workplace. Often the 'understood' norms are in need of challenging, but you must be careful how you do that or you can get burned, as has happened in this case.
The meeting to discuss communication was an opportunity to begin rebuilding relationships, but it appears that it was not very well managed. You have two alternatives, it seems to me.
The first, which I would recommend, is to approach your co-workers one to one. Set up a special time to meet and have a conversation with them. Tell them that you recognize that you have stepped on some toes and that you are looking to them to fill you in on expectations in the workplace. Ask how you can help to improve working relationships.
My hope is that your colleagues will recognize that your direct and confrontational approach to the amount of work each of you was doing was in part accounted for by your being new on the job. This may encourage them to work with you to build a better working relationship.
The alternative is to approach your boss, again one to one, and ask him or her to help you understand what the expectations are. It may be that the others are doing less work than you and that the employer is just fine with that. In that case you can decide whether to decrease your efforts, or carry on but without complaining about it.
It is unclear from your letter whether the employer perceives a problem
with the disparity that you have demonstrated. If not, then you need
to relax about it and accept the pace of work that is required. If on
There is no easy answer to this issue. Perhaps a third alternative is to find a mentor, someone older and more experienced whom you trust either in the firm or an outsider knowledgeable about the industry. Ask them to help you discern what is the ethical way to deal with this issue.
I wish you well in dealing with this.
Dr. John Burton
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