Marie McIntyre, Ph. D, Your Office Coach

Question:  “One of my employees frequently takes personal calls on his cell phone. I don’t mind calls for important matters or emergencies, but I often hear him chatting with friends or discussing a business that he operates on the side. My main concern is that his job performance is not acceptable. He always seems to be preoccupied with something other than work. I discussed the issue of personal calls at a company-wide meeting, but he still seems to be receiving them. What would be a tactful way to deal with this problem?”  —K.B.

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Question:  “One of my employees frequently takes personal calls on his cell phone. I don’t mind calls for important matters or emergencies, but I often hear him chatting with friends or discussing a business that he operates on the side. My main concern is that his job performance is not acceptable. He always seems to be preoccupied with something other than work. I discussed the issue of personal calls at a company-wide meeting, but he still seems to be receiving them. What would be a tactful way to deal with this problem?”  —K.B.

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Question: “I decided to apply for a management job. I expected to receive the same salary as my friend, who has a similar position with another team. When I got the promotion, my new boss didn’t say how much my raise would be. It turns out that I not only make less than my friend, but I also work about 50% more hours. I want to transfer to a different department, but I am not sure how to go about it.”

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Question: “I work in a small office with a woman who loudly cracks and snaps her chewing gum. This lady is pushing 40 years old, so her behavior seems very unprofessional. The popping noises drive me crazy and make it hard to concentrate. I’ve tried earplugs, but they get in the way when I need to answer the phone or talk to people. I spend my breaks with the gum chewer, so I don’t want to aggravate her.  How do I handle this?”  —Need Some Quiet

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Question: “I work in a small office with a woman who loudly cracks and snaps her chewing gum. This lady is pushing 40 years old, so her behavior seems very unprofessional. The popping noises drive me crazy and make it hard to concentrate. I’ve tried earplugs, but they get in the way when I need to answer the phone or talk to people. I spend my breaks with the gum chewer, so I don’t want to aggravate her.  How do I handle this?”  —Need Some Quiet

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Question: “I used to have the same salary as my male co-worker ‘Chuck,’ but I recently learned that he now makes more than I do. I have more work experience, but he gets more face time with our manager. Our boss is frequently in Chuck’s office discussing ordinary issues that everyone encounters. He seems to be her pet. In my area, I try to handle problems myself so as not to trouble her with them. Since we have exactly the same duties, I believe Chuck has been given more money simply because he’s a man. I love my job and don’t want to leave, but I feel this is wrong. What do you think is going on?”  —Sherry

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Question: “I used to have the same salary as my male co-worker ‘Chuck,’ but I recently learned that he now makes more than I do. I have more work experience, but he gets more face time with our manager. Our boss is frequently in Chuck’s office discussing ordinary issues that everyone encounters. He seems to be her pet. In my area, I try to handle problems myself so as not to trouble her with them. Since we have exactly the same duties, I believe Chuck has been given more money simply because he’s a man. I love my job and don’t want to leave, but I feel this is wrong. What do you think is going on?”  —Sherry

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Question:  “I am a professional, focused, detail-oriented employee who is often described as a “quiet person”.  Instead of seeing my calm reserve as an asset, my colleagues tend to criticize me for it.  One of my co-workers, who is also a good friend, is very outgoing and frequently outspoken.  Management recently named her the “point person” while our boss is out on medical leave, which means she will be supervising me. In my work, I am much more precise than she is. Also, I have worked here for 11 years, while she has been here only six. This betrayal has made me incredibly angry. I may not be as outgoing, but I am a better worker and have been here longer.  What should I do about this?”  —Betrayed & Bitter

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Question:  “I am a professional, focused, detail-oriented employee who is often described as a “quiet person”.  Instead of seeing my calm reserve as an asset, my colleagues tend to criticize me for it.  One of my co-workers, who is also a good friend, is very outgoing and frequently outspoken.  Management recently named her the “point person” while our boss is out on medical leave, which means she will be supervising me. In my work, I am much more precise than she is. Also, I have worked here for 11 years, while she has been here only six. This betrayal has made me incredibly angry. I may not be as outgoing, but I am a better worker and have been here longer.  What should I do about this?”  —Betrayed & Bitter

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Question: “I’m not sure how to handle my new supervisory position. Before being promoted, I was friends with my former co-workers, so I’m finding it difficult to tell them what to do … I know I have to demonstrate leadership, but I’m afraid this will turn me into an unlikeable person. After all, does anyone really like their boss?” — Nice Guy

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