Supporting a difficult member of the team
What you need to know:
- There is a lady who was moved from one department to another, and now she feels the need to be rude to her former supervisor whenever they interact. She has been advised against it by colleagues, but she claims her former supervisor was not the best, so she does not care.
There is a lady who was moved from one department to another, and now she feels the need to be rude to her former supervisor whenever they interact. She has been advised against it by colleagues, but she claims her former supervisor was not the best, so she does not care. But how does that reflect on her behaviour and look to her new supervisor, who has witnessed some of this?
Hello Sheila, thank you for sharing this concern r. Unfortunately, if someone is yet to receive/been provided with constructive feedback, they may not fully appreciate the impact of their behaviour. You need to be aware that people’s behaviour is shaped by their values, attitudes, experiences and exposure.
This also includes having people giving us feedback, which also defines who we are, what we do and how we interact with others. As this seems to be a concern, you will need to decide how important the impact of her behaviour is on you or the team you work with.
You could consider pulling her to the side, giving her feedback, and sharing how her behaviour negatively impacts those she works with. While you are having a feedback session with her, it is essential that you also recognise any good aspects of her contribution to the team.
This may be difficult, given her current negative behaviour; nonetheless, she must understand that she is a team member. She must know that her behaviour will repel people wanting to work with her.
Another point you may wish to raise is the possibility of her former supervisor raising a grievance against her, which would not only impact her, but she may have her employment terminated if it is found that she is in contravention with the organisation’s code of conduct and values.
If you cannot have the conversation, I suggest you raise the matter with the Human Resources department. An important question that needs to be answered is why she keeps moving from one department to another. This should be a concern; she may be a poor performer and her movement may be an approach to managing her.
That said, not addressing the root cause of the problem only means that it is being transferred from one department to the next. Having this managed by the Human Resources department may also provide a platform where she can air her concerns and frustrations in a safe environment. We must appreciate that sometimes one’s reaction is influenced by factors outside the workplace, and she may need some support.
Speak with her and if that does not work, then raise the matter with the Human Resources department, especially if underlying issues need to be addressed. Good luck
Caroline Mboijana, Managing Director, The Leadership Team (U) [email protected]