Agony Aunt: I want to work at a place where I am not blamed for nepotism

Stuck in nepotism net

I am working at my dad’s friend’s office past a few months now. Before joining here, I had thought that it will be a good work place and I will also be treated equal as other employee’s, but here it doesn’t seem so. I’m given less responsibility of work as my colleagues think I’m the boss’s (uncle) friend. I overheard few people mentioning nepotism with my name and I got quite irked. I have nothing to do with the placement and I also work hard whenever given any work. I want to escape this partial environment and work at a place where I am not blamed for nepotism. What can I do?

Ans: The scenario mentioned about nepotism causing an impact on you requires a tactful handling as there is family involved. Having a conversation with your uncle and explaining how your growth is being hampered as the environment is too personal and no one is to blame. Going with a concrete plan as to where you wish to work or that you are already applying for jobs elsewhere could also be a way to move to a favourable work environment without hurting sentiments. Being appreciative yet assertive about the fact that the combination of you being involved in family business might not be the right mix is important.

Fear of future

I am 33-year-old women holding exhibitions for almost five years now. Moreover, I have a huge variety of the collection purchased by aged women between 40’s and 50’s. I thought of expanding my business and adding more of collection for the youngsters. But I fear if I will stand out the same way and cope with their choices and stuff, collection, etc. I am losing my confidence. Help me to deal with it. What am I supposed to do?

Ans: You have a business idea that needs proper execution so that you gain the most out of it. In order to understand the trend and liking of young people seeking help of a youngster who is in the similar field as you or has studied business development and can work with you to expand your business could be helpful. You could think about co-partnering with a youngster who has knowledge about latest fashion thus keeping you in loop. Alternatively, internet today has no bounds in terms of gaining knowledge, connecting with people all over the globe could also help. Taking a few online courses that cater to business development could assist in your work immensely and you could look into many more options alongside this idea.

When it’s young vs. old

I have a small scale industry dealing in cloth materials. I have 25 employees who are mostly in the age group of 25-50 years, and there are few who have lot more of experience than the new hired employees. At times they get in rift maybe because of the age factor and start having more communication gap. How do I make them understand the need of a little new choice with a mix of retro fashion? This is only possible if my employees work together as a team. How do I solve their differences and ego at the work place?

 Ans: The old and the new generation would require an ice breaking environment where they get familiar with each other and also understand that working with each other as a team is essential for the productivity of the company. You could host a competition wherein you can team up experienced and a young employee and ask them to submit their work that should depict their individual strengths. Things like these could help foster a stronger bond and also help them not only work with each other but also be tolerant towards the difference of opinions. Holding a weekly/fortnightly review meeting in order to oversee that there is rapport being formed between the different age groups would help in bridging the gap.

Agony Aunt: I want to work at a place where I am not blamed for nepotism

Being suppressed by senior 

I work at a clinic and I’m really enjoying my work. There’s my senior who’s 3 years elder to me and keeps suppressing me for my work showing her seniority to me. I have a very friendly work environment here and don’t wish to spoil things or sour the workplace environment in any ways. What should I do to handle and mend my relations with her?

 Ans: You are enjoying the work environment however not how you are being treated by your senior. The idea of talking to your senior about how her behaviour affects you could be daunting but a necessary step as you are there to learn and gain experience. Your action of raising the concern may not necessarily lead to ruining or spoiling the workplace environment. Communicating to her about your difficulties could be a start to mend the relationship with her which might be strictly professional and not bordering on a friendly one as you might be sharing with others in the clinic.

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