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Old 10-01-2013, 01:42 PM   #41
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I think asking your management for clarification would be a good idea. Maybe they do want Jim to be in charge of the project that you're working on, but maybe they don't. They need to either let you know if it's ok for him to micromanage you, or you need to know if you can tell him to leave you alone.

I get pushed around a lot at work being a female in IT, but I've learned to pick my battles. If I feel strongly about something, I make sure that people are listening to me.

You should definitely get your budget in order, and start looking at web-development contract work. Maybe you can find something that's full time for a year, then goes part time. It might even pay more than you're making now.
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Old 10-01-2013, 02:58 PM   #42
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Originally Posted by Cassie View Post
I thought Meadbh was trying to be helpful. Wishing you a better work situation in the days ahead flyaway.


Cheers, Cassie

+1
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Old 10-01-2013, 06:00 PM   #43
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I think avoiding Jim is a good plan. If I were you, I would HATE interaccting with Jim--especially if he is trying to give you assignments. Can you choose to interpret his assignments as requests for help from you? Pretend that he must not know how to do those tasks---to amuse yourself if nothing else. I guess I'd just do what I could to discourage Jim. Also, it sound like me might be taking credit for your work and I would hate that too.
He didn't give me assignments, just specified how certain things should be done. He decided on a library we would use, but that was approved by the lead developer. I didn't mind.

There were times when Jim acted very forceful about how to do things. But other times, he leaves me alone or is not obnoxious.

Sometimes he talks very loud and fast, as if trying to confuse me and make me feel old and stupid. I don't think he does it on purpose. I think I can usually deal with it. For example one time I said "I don't remember the exact line of code you are referring to, I will have to look at it again."

I mean, he wouldn't remember an exact line of code either. It's just part of the IT act.

My first year at this job was so peaceful, but now I see there will be some challenges. But at least I only really need one more year.

I don't think I can simply stop working altogether in a year, but I could stop saving for retirement, so I could have a much lower income.
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Old 10-01-2013, 06:03 PM   #44
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What is getting ridiculous?

The job or the feedback people are trying to give?
Saying I must have low self esteem because "I" wasn't capitalized somewhere in my post.
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Old 10-01-2013, 06:09 PM   #45
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What happened to that deep breath? Sometimes it's best for us to forgive (or ignore) each other and move on. We're all here to have fun.
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Old 10-01-2013, 06:12 PM   #46
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The picture won't look the same after that last year. Then you get to think about other stuff. It does happen.
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Old 10-01-2013, 07:51 PM   #47
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He didn't give me assignments, just specified how certain things should be done. [Managers have the authority to specify how things must be done, I'd call that a suggestion - to Jim's face would be best, as in "Thank you for the suggestion Jim, I'll take that into consideration."]

There were times when Jim acted very forceful about how to do things. But other times, he leaves me alone or is not obnoxious. [My take on those sorts of obnoxious ones is they do it just to test the waters, and in no one calls them on it they do it on and on just begging to get some attention like a spoiled child. When he does it, he needs to be told to go to the corner and take a time out. I'm sure the puzzled look on his face would be priceless!]

Sometimes he talks very loud and fast, as if trying to confuse me and make me feel old and stupid. I don't think he does it on purpose. I think I can usually deal with it. For example one time I said "I don't remember the exact line of code you are referring to, I will have to look at it again."

I mean, he wouldn't remember an exact line of code either. It's just part of the IT act.

My first year at this job was so peaceful, but now I see there will be some challenges. But at least I only really need one more year.

I don't think I can simply stop working altogether in a year, but I could stop saving for retirement, so I could have a much lower income. [Do not let this twerp make you settle for less of a retirement than you deserve.]
In the engineering / technical field I've seen enough of this too, and it really boils down to the young guns showing some respect for their more experienced peers. Roll-my-eyes moments have been more likely to happen when dealing with the non-technical folks we interact with every day though, and my pride was always a tad higher when I would outlast the "rising stars" who sought to chew me up like some sort of non-essential loafer because I simply refused to concede to their ridiculous demands.

The real PITA's were ones who rose to power by being azzholes and alienating everybody. Eventually they get promoted to the point they are in over their heads, now I just like hanging on OMY to watch them suffer in misery. And oh, they've been coached by HR to stop being so antagonistic, and now struggle with having to deal with people in a more civil manner. Life has great rewards for the perseverant.

So, #1 - look out for number 1, yourself.
#2 - don't let Jim get to you, he will eventually get what he deserves.
And #3 - when Jim is acting towards you in a way that you feel is disrespectful, call him out on it. Unless you do, he will keep on doing it. If he still persists after you let him know, then it is time to speak with a manager about those documented incidents.
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Old 10-02-2013, 06:16 PM   #48
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"when Jim is acting towards you in a way that you feel is disrespectful, call him out on it. Unless you do, he will keep on doing it. If he still persists after you let him know, then it is time to speak with a manager about those documented incidents."

I don't want to turn this into a negative downward spiral of antagonism. When Jim says something I agree with, I make sure to say that I agree. He is smart, at least with IT stuff.

When he gets really pushy and obnoxious, then I think it is better to ignore it.

My best defense is probably trying to know what I am doing and saying, and not blurt out anything stupid. At least not too often.

Fortunately I have a lot of experience, which almost makes up for my lack of enthusiasm.
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Old 10-05-2013, 06:52 PM   #49
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Flyaway, I would like to thank you for being so open. I admire your courage actually. I was a Director in IT for a MegaCorp for nearly 20 years and decided to leave this year and take a lower paying job with an nonprofit for similar reasons. The IT world has become very caustic and globalization combined with the influx of millenials has created a great deal of conflict and stress in the workplace. Age discrimination is a very real thing in IT. Here is what I recommend as what you can do to help yourself.

1. HR is almost always useless: Complaining to HR almost never does anything except make the situation worse. The vast majority of these departments are more interested in their own agendas than they are in protecting people.
2. Keep a daily journal of activity: The most important thing you can do is to document all of the offhanded comments, overheard conversations and situational discrimination. I can promise you that when you build a detailed journal of that sort of activity over a several months and years, that this really help protect you. There is not a legal department in any MegaCorp that is going to dispute a long and accurately documented series of incidents and issues. I always found that writing it down is somewhat theraputic as well. An example of an entry:

October 4th 2013: Jim made a comment that people over 40 really don't understand modern IT and the manager agreed with him.

3. You also want to document the actions that you take. I would counsel you to speak your peace, but do it in a non-emotional fashion and stick to the facts. For example, you can easily state that you don't appreciate the comment and just walk away.

4. Save any electronic proof: Important to file away emails in your journal as corroborating proof. Email is nearly always the death nail for people that behave this way.

5. The last option is the "Concern Line" if your company has one. Generally, the internal audit group is required to follow up on each complaint made to the concern line and it is a way to get around the HR people. I would caution against this option until you have a substantial journal.

I believe if you follow a plan like this and turn all of the negativity into a project of sorts, I think you might be surprised at what happens.

I wish you well and completely understand how you feel.
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Old 10-06-2013, 07:19 PM   #50
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Thank you courtjustshan. I'm glad you affirmed that what I am talking about is very real, not just my imagination or paranoia. I left a job a year ago, where I had been for 11 years, because of this. In that case, it was my manager who was out to get me. I complained to HR many times, and I think they told my manager and it got much worse.

My current job was very peaceful until recently, when I started having to coordinate with Jim. He is a nice guy and very smart and hard-working. But he can get into a crazed state, where he orders me around. When in that state, he thinks he knows everything and I don't know anything. It is extremely disrespectful and condescending and rude.

I have known other guys exactly like him. No matter what you do, they will tell you it's wrong and you should do it their way instead. They don't realize there are many ways of doing things.

The managers at this job are quiet and not arrogant. But unfortunately they seem to like and value Jim. They don't seem to notice anything wrong with the way he talks to me.

I can't complain about him, because they would probably take his side. But I guess I should start documenting, as you said, just in case.

I really want to get out of IT asap. At least I want to get out of being a FTE. I really can't stand the stress any more. I like the work, but there are too many Jims.
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