Free Press Journal

Agony Aunt helps you to deal with workplace problems


Being left out

I have recently moved to a new branch of my company. It’s been merely 20 days and I am already feeling the difference that exists between me and the others. I used to work at the head office for almost 3 years and due to change of residence, I requested for an internal transfer to a branch close to home. Now since the time I have joined this place, I feel that I am constantly being kept out of discussions and I also overheard one of the staff members saying that I might be here to assess the working environment and that everyone should be cautious while talking to me as I might have connections in the head office. I don’t know how to deal with this.

Ans: At any new place it is important to give some time to let yourself get adjusted to it and vice-versa. there is still that phase to occur for you and your colleagues. Using few ice breaking techniques such as spending lunch hour with a few to start with, approaching them despite what you may have overheard being said about you but at the same time being yourself. The people at the workplace might be intimidated by your work experience at the head office and hence cautious, your actions if guarded because of this knowledge could lead to further rift. If you could warm up to them and take that initial step, you could be in an environment of your choice.

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Rule breaker

I have personally believed that there need to be certain work ethics in place so as to cultivate the habit of working in a tandem with one another. I am not sure that whether I get too carried away in upholding the rules or others are just not concerned about rules anymore. This has been bothering me at work lately as people around me are okay with bending few rules here and there and not worry about it at all. I would feel guilty if I even print a paper in office printer which is for personal use. I don’t know whether I should be the way I am or I should give in and be like others so as to get rid of this constant thinking. Please help.

Ans: The trouble here seems to be your inability to let go of the fact that if you are a stickler of rules then it is mandatory for others also to be the same. Individual differences exist amongst all of us and it’s essential to realise that holding certain standards about people and looking at them from the same lens might lead to judgements being formed and thus constant thinking that why can’t people be more understanding or considerate about right and wrong. At work if you are uncomfortable with certain practices, not being a part of it could save you the overthinking, wanting to join them in order to stop the thought process will not be a 100% guaranteed solution. Thus, look at these individuals beyond their flaws and if you find that they are good people then accepting them with the flaws but not partaking in it yourself could help.

Clouds of confusion

I have returned from the US last year after finishing my bachelor’s degree in Management. I couldn’t find a job there and had to pack my bags for return. I am not very keen on working here but being unemployed isn’t helping me either. So, I decided to join my father’s business which is fairly new as he started this venture recently. I am being expected to start with the running of this business as my father wants to pass it on to me. I am not sure how to go about this thing. 

Ans: There is disappointment, disinterest, confusion and a strong need to settle from what you have mentioned in your problem. It is important to address each of them individually. the disappointment of coming back from the US and settling here need to be worked upon in a way where it doesn’t make you feel at any given point that you had to settle in India and that this is your life. If you are really keen on working abroad then this work in family business could be a stepping stone and a good experience. if you are unsure about the working of this new venture, speak to your father about the same and get some help till you learn the ropes and can handle things on your own. You can brainstorm and bring about changes if you wish to so as to make it interesting to work for.

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Making errors

There has been a managerial shift in my company and since then every month there has been some or the other employee being sacked and I am getting nervous. The anxiety is building up so much so that I am making errors in my work. This is making it easier for me to be next one to be sacked. I want this job as my family depends on me for the sustenance. I am good at my job but this anxiety is very crippling. Should I consult someone?

Ans: The anxiety is crippling your work and it is like a vicious cycle where anxiety about being anxious is making you all the more anxious. to break this cycle the self-image has to be more confident. The confidence in yourself will reflect in your work and your work is going to matter at the end of the day. Along with being optimistic it is essential to be practical. If the layoffs are happening because of the managerial shift and not due to the employees being bad at their work, then looking out for a new job with similar job profile and pay should also be considered. Strategically planning both these situations will help you put an end to anxiety as you are involved more in problem solving than lamenting about the problem itself.