Free Press Journal

Agony Aunt helps you to deal with workplace problems


Taking tough decision

My age is 24 years. I am an entrepreneur with a successful business. It has been a year since the commencement of my company. I liked all my employee’s, but they do not work as much or as well as they used to. I have set a team of about 15 people that I wish to work with further but that means I must fire the other 10. Since I am quite close to the age of my employee’s we treat each other as friends. I do not know how to tell them that they can no longer work here.

Ans: The fine line between being friends and colleagues and in your case an employee and employer needs to be maintained in order to have smooth functioning at the workplace. If the team members are not being as productive as you want them to be and you see that the company is suffering, then might as well ask those team members to reconsider their options of working with you or then find a new job because work and friendship are held at two different parameters. Be clear about the decision being professional and nothing related to personal feelings towards them.

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False promises

I am 22 and I recently had a baby. Unfortunately, the baby was afflicted with a severe disease of down syndrome. I sent an email to the office saying that I will be needing an extension in my maternity leave due to the cause mentioned. I had to take extra care of the baby. I got an email agreeing to this. It was supposed to be a paid leave too. Now that I am ready to go back, these claims have been erased and I am not even getting any money for the short maternity leave I had earlier asked for. What to do?

Ans: Since the communication has been done via emails, you might still have those emails in your account. You can document your communication with them and submit it at the HR and request for a retribution. In case they do not support your claim, you can at least demand for an explanation for the said behaviour and then take a call for further action. If things go out of hand maybe seeking some sort of legal help might also help.

Excessive travelling causing stress

I am an NRI. This means that I travel a lot.  I am constantly changing time zones. However, most of the times I reach at odd times and leave at odd times. I cannot concentrate on anything. I am zoned out during meetings. I am very sleepy all the time. I can never sleep properly, even when I do most of the times I am travelling the same day thus I get tired again. How to manage this stressful schedule.

Ans: The disturbed sleep cycle needs some medical attention at the earliest as it may further lead to health issues if left unattended. Also, if it’s affecting your work productivity may be taking a backseat in terms of travelling not entirely but to a minimum is required to get things back on track for you. Maintaining sleep hygiene can also help in the short run (keeping away gadgets while trying to sleep, taking short naps while travelling, eating right and on time).

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Balancing work and college

I wish to become an architect. This means that I need to do a lot of internships to get experience. The college I am in granted leaves for work willing when I joined. However, now they are very strict and demand 75% attendance every semester. My employer will fire me if I do not attend at least 4 times a week excluding Sundays. I am confused and do not know how to manage this. I cannot quit the job as it is part of the minimum requirement to get into the college of my dreams.

Ans: The situation seems to leave little or no option for you to make a choice between the current college requirements and future college requirements. If the current college is demanding compulsory attendance, then you might consider finishing the college with good grades as well as good attendance as that might also reflect on your application in another college. As far as the internship is concerned you can re-join during the holidays and work more hours and days compared to what you can spare now. Thus, doing justice to both, college and the internship.