Dinesh Divekar
Business Mentor, Consultant And Trainer
Kannanmv
Hr & Administration
Cite Contribution
Community Manager
Tajsateesh
Recruitment/talent Acquisition, Career Counselling
+3 Others

#Anonymous

Dear All,I met with an accident last week and had informed my reporting manager about it immediately.I had injuries and was advised bed rest by the doctors.unfortunately it was during the time of a project delivery and my entire team was on it.There was no call or response from my reporting manager.There was sarcasm in all the mails and messages she sent during that time.On the second day night at 9.00 pm,she calls me and says that it would be better that i put in my papers.She went on to sarcastically talk about my accident and also about how other reportees of mine are working hard ,went on to talk about my performance etc.I was shocked for a moment and said that will discuss this when i am back in office.After that she sends messages saying that she is happy that i could not come to office and praising my team members etc.She also started spreading romours in office saying i was asked to leave.I escalated it to my senior management as i could not understand whats the issue. if it was related to performance our appraisal just got over in december and there was no mention of it and my ratings were good.I am in the process of discussion with BU head and hr head of my company with whom my boss share a good rapport.They were trying to link it to performance,which i did not agree to.it seems my boss has now denied the fact that she asked me to leave verbally.i could not record the conversation also.My salary component was not released as she told that i have not reported to office inspite of all the mails i have sent.My question is this.can a reporting manager ask an employee to leave calling up on the phone when the employee is on leave on medical grounds? Can the company hold back the salary component while an employee in on sick leave?How do i prove my innocense in this case?
From India, Bangalore

The story is from one side and therefore it is not prudent to come to a finding on this issue on that basis.However is not a fair for administration to ask an employee to leave the job during his sickness more so when the emplployee wants to join the job after becoming fit.Now the question is no longer relevant since the reporting manger has denied it now. It is better for you to discuss the issue with your functional head as well as BU who are supposed to have good repport with her and find out the reasons for R.M's behaviour. Thereafter clear the msiunderstanding with the reportinging manager by taking teh help of mediators like your functional head and BU instead of directly engaging with the R.M.
B.Saikumar
Mumbai
From India, Mumbai
Dear citehr friends,

As Mr Saikumar has said, this post is one side of the story. Unless we hear the other side as well, it is not possible to comment on it. Nevertheless, if we assume that 20% of what has been written is true then also it is case study for the HR professionals. The post goes on to show that:

a) Organisation culture of the company. Policy on employee separation is not well defined.

b) How weak HR is and how it gets subjugated by Ops managers

c) If the salary is withheld then how HR has weak knowledge of labour laws

d) Poor manpower planning. While designing the manpower specifications, why the contingencies like employee's sickness were not taken into account?

e) Lack of protocol of communication

f) Administration on the whims and fancies of individual rather than system and processes

g) Why Ops staffs consider HR as useless department. This is because when it comes to unfair treatment to the employees, HR should stand for the employees. They develop the cold feet exactly in crisis.

h) How HR and Ops is impervious to employee attrition. This imperviousness is a result of their inability to calculate the cost of attrition.

This is a case study for Training Managers as well. When training managers organise the training programmes, they should take into account the above factors and assess whether the training will eradicate the malaise mentioned above. There is so much talk to "leadership' and "team building" but how it fails when it comes to execution is well evinced from this post.

For originator of the post: - Possibly you and your reporting manager were not getting well with each other. She was not satisfied with your performance. She could be using your accident as the alibi. Did you speak to her directly when you met with accident? Suppose if you were not in position to speak then was someone else from your family apprised her about your physical condition? Do you have sufficient evidence of your communication with your reporting manager? As a solution, ask for the release of the salary. If they do not oblige then you may approach the labour officer of your area. However, this is a risky route and think of your career as well.

Ok...

Dinesh V Divekar
From India, Bangalore
In addition to what Dinesh and B.Sai Kumar have contributed, please find my thoughts. The medical reports that states the requirement for the bed rest, remains your only respite.

The communication with the manager is lost. Please don't hunt around for sympathy.

Keep the discussions with the management team genuine and request them for an option on the humanity grounds. Seek guidance with the leaders you know have always been supportive.

A 'Stop-Payment' on the salary is initiated when the employee doesn't report for a fixed number of days. Its a legitimate process, with most of the firms. Its often automated, hence might not have been entirely targeted to harass you.

Take the supportive leaders in confidence and let us know how your communication proceeds.

When communicating with your reporting manager , while you are away from you work, please email the discussion and mark a copy to your personal id. Send registered letters to your employers, hereafter. Wish you all the best!
From India, Mumbai
Hi...

If you were on leave on medical grounds, then I am sure you would have all the required medical docs to prove about your medical condition.

Secondly how did you inform about your leave - verbally or txting or mail. If you have texted or mailed then I am sure you have the proof. Irrespective of however your RM spoke apparently if you provide all the necessary documents alongwith evidence of keeping all the concerned informed I am sure your situation will be considered reasonably.

Nevertheless be honest and transparent while you discuss with seniors. It is a normal practice for companies to "Stop Pay" when employee proceeds on leave without intimation or is out of reach during a crucial time in the project. Afterall we need to understand when we are playing a crucial role we have to be responsible enough to maintain timely communication and also if possible extend support in whatever way possible so that deliverables are not impacted majorly and the team doesn't get overburdened.

- Gia
From India, Pune
Irrespective of whether the situation described is true or not, the solution to such conflicts is based on 3 key factors

1. First & foremost, separate people & issues - an action from an individual or a response from them should not be used to judge a person. See the context & the actual issue & then evaluate the response. for example in this case, it is possible that the reporting Manager's actions were driven by frustration at not having a key member available at the critical juncture of project delivery. .

2. Resolution to issues is never achieved by trying to prove the other person wrong. The objective has to be to correct the impression and to subtly ( no show-offs or victory thumps) make everyone realize that you were not at fault. Facts & documentary proofs may come handy here.

3. Lastly, Everything can be resolved through a candid discussion. The moment you escalate the matter, it becomes a fight to prove the other person wrong. In this case, No harm is done by proactively approaching your reporting authority and seeking her advice on what her expectation from you were and how such situations can be handled in future. This will help remove any anger that the person may have towards you and at the same time give her time to reflect on how this could have been handled differently.

So the underlying theme is to focus on What is wrong instead of Who is wrong.

Hope this helps you . Best Wishes to you

Subramani.
From India, Mumbai
#Anonymous
Dear all,

Thank you for your opinions.I am going through a toughtime after i have sent the mail to the senior management on this.I work in the middle management role and would like to further elaborate on what has happened.I have started working under this manager only since last 6 months.I was having a very good rapport with her also.For the past 2-3 months i have seen some differences in her behaviour.After my appraisal in december,i was given the feedback that my juniors have to be made more independent and i need to focus more on client relationship and i had started doing that.I stopped micromanaging my team and was more focussed on client relationship.I have noted that when ever client has given me an appreciation,my Manager has ensured that she finds some fault with something else and unnecessarily bring it on the table.Mine is a Market research industry and i was totally new to the field.When i was hired,the then manager was looking for person with operations expereince and has hired me since they did not need a core Market research person.But as my job demands it,i have learned 70-80 % of the analysis models.Infact i only need to ensure the job is done as it is the job of my Repotees to do all that.what i have noticed is that she some times directly comes and teaches something new to the team when i am not there and keeps saying that the team did not know it and she helped them.She was playing lot of double game with my team members like in my absence she calls them up and say things directly and says to me as to why they are not coming to you and not me. Then she keeps saying the team does not respect you as i am weak in technical aspects.She also says that the team should be afraid of you .The fact is that i never felt that my team disrespects me.I do not like to have a fear filled atmosphere in the team and believe that congenial environment should be provided.If there is any lag,i give feedback immediately and issue is solved.I have infact so many times discussed about my style of managing the team and told that i will manage things in the right way.She keeps talking about this "Respect" and "Fear".She also plays lot of politics with other team members to gain the appreciation of our super Boss.She acts very pally with me too when ever she wants to get things done.I was aware of all the politics she did to my earler Boss to chuck him out of the company and kept telling all the clients that he was asked to leave.When i met with an accident last week,my sister had immediately informed her as i was in hospital.Even i mesaged her after i was back from it.Subsiquently i have all mail proofs and doctors prescription advicing complete rest.She did not inform my commercial team that i have met with and told them that i was not reporting to office while she had all my mails with her.That was the reason they did not release my car hire cheque component which actually comes on every 10th.In our company there is really no winding up time and end up working 12-14 hours every day.When ever i raise the point of need of Manpower in the team,she says that compared to our units in other locations,our business is very less,but the fact is that since our unit has lot of new clients we end up doing everything from scratch and it is time consuming.On the night she called she was mentioning to others in my team working hard despite any problems.I was not sure whether she was angry with me that i was not available in the office when an urgent deliverable was there.But How can she expect me to work when i am injured and could not even move from my bed.Also since i had already made all plans for the deliverable,her only job was to guide the team.Not even once she called me up to enquire about my health.The only call i got was asking to put my papers.Also the later SMS's she sent was also very sarcatic.I wrote an email to the higher ups asking for what exactly is going on.I was going through so much physical pain and this was giving me mental trauma too.Now after the discussion with the unit heads they are saying it could be based on performance.On the night that she called(which is on my 3rd day of leave),she has written about my performance and other things to the vertical head.During that night I also got many mails saying the errors committed by my team and i should have been careful.Had i'v been there,i would have surely checked it.I feel that she was using my absense to frame me up and ask to leave.I dont even think that she has discussed it with anybody and was trying to push me out silently.Though she had given me ok kind of ratings stating her expectaions are different,my first Boss had given my high ratings-Put together i had decent ratings.But even after repeated reminders she has not yet shared the normalized ratings with me..But now when i have highlighted this issue,it is being framed as performance issue which i am sure is not the reason.When i showed them the sarcatic sms she had sent,they told that i might be interpreting in a wrong manner.There is no proper HR system or a grievance cell in our company.But i am surprised the way company is also supporting the unprofessional approach of my manager.Can a company just like that ask some one to leave without giving any indication or prior notices/warning letters.In the last discussion that i have had they informed me that she has denied calling me up.But she has gone and spread rumors that i was asked to leave.I was shocked to hear all this when i was back in office this week.Today she told me not to talk to any of our cleints or deal with anybody.I feel i am being bulldozed by her for reason unknown to me.She has asked my team members not to talk to me and also told them that i was asked to leave,while there is no such mails or proofs or anything.I know that she is very close to the senior management and now they are also just dragging this case unnecessarily. I feel that she want me to get frustracted and quit and go..She has been sending some mails to senior management,but all after i have highlighted this issue to them.My question is that can a company support all this?If the management is also not giving a prompt response,what is the next step an employee can do?.In fact the Ceo has been marked in all my mails,even then i dont seem to see any just response from them.Should i take it up with a labour commissioner as the only proof i have is that my payment was held back by the commercial team,now that she has denied she has asked me to quit.I need help here as this is the first time that i am facing such dirty politics in my 9 yrs of career.
From India, Bangalore
You have two clear choices. First is to fight till the end and present all the proof of what she is doing, to someone in the leadership team , who is willing to listen and might be able to bring in a change.
However, it seems she is favoured by the top management. Hence, please do not try to fix this. No matter whatever the reason, why they choose to turn a deaf ear. Begin with the premise, that they are agreeing to buy her statement than the facts.
You can stay immuned to all what she is doing and continue to work. No matter how much she tries, when the things will go wrong, the company will need you to perform.
This wouldn't make your situation bearable, but of course an option, for sure.
Alternatively, you may just drop all that is happening or will continue to happen and create a career beyond the firm. This brings the stigma that she worked so hard. The choice is yours.
From India, Mumbai
Hello,

I am IN-TOTO with what (Cite Contribution) mentioned in her last response--above.

Frankly, I empathize with your situation--since I have seen it happen earlier.

Like (Cite Contribution) mentioned, your Top management's responses become VERY critical here. If you feel that they are favouring her, then just make your next job move. Whether they learn the hard way--that they made a mistake or not of siding with her--IS NOT your problem.

With your present medical situation, I am not really sure IF going on the offensive in this company is worth it. Maybe, you could utilize your efforts & time BETTER in hunting for your next job.

Having said this, you also need to meet someone in the company's senior management level for a heart-to-heart talk--especially since you need a reference for the BCs [and Market Research sector isn't very large--so even IF you leave the slightest chance for 'her' to be in the picture in any BC, you know the end-result].

There can be also ANOTHER option--IF your company can move you to another Division/Department under a different boss AND where your function wouldn't cross her's, that could, in a way, keep your options open as far as what (Cite Contribution) mentioned ['.........when the things will go wrong, the company will need you to perform'].

You haven't mentioned the duration of medical bedrest. To an extent, your next step would depend on this aspect too.

All the Best.

Rgds,

TS
From India, Hyderabad
Both (Cite Contribution) and tajsateesh have guided you well as to how to respond to the situation with maturity. The need of the hour is to act with discretion and but not show of valour looking to the fact thatyou may not recieve any support from te management either.The need of the hour is to maintain calm and go about doing your work without reacting to any kind provocation till you continue there as you need to have peaceful exit from the comapny with relevant certificates of servce and look for another job.
B.Saikumar
Mumbai
From India, Mumbai
#Anonymous
Thank you for all your views.I know that i am fighting a hard battle.Thinking of moving ahead with a different job as i dont see a point in sticking on since the bad blood is now there.Was wondering if companies support such unprofessioanl practices,what employees can resort to in such cases?
From India, Bangalore
Dear Mr.Anonymous,

It was indeed a harrowing experience you had been through. Upon reading through your detailed mail it appears to me that there is some prejudice you have against your boss and vice versa. This prejudice has split the relationship. You need to excuse me for finding pinholes in the statements made by you.

When you expect your boss to call you to enquire about your health which she did not, on the same token you also did not call her personally to covey about your accident. You have passed on the message through your sister. I do agree that you cannot communicate while you were hospitalised, but you could have always called up and informed her personally after you were out of the hospital. Text messaging does not establish personal rapport it is just one mode of communication that lacks the emotional angle.

Working for 12 - 14 hours a day is not uncommon when one has projects to be completed. The work from home concept also permits you to work for long hours which is actually not revealed to the external world.

The other aspect that I observe is you have actually stated that you have worked out a plan and expected the boss to carryout the plan in your absence. I am not sure how critically you were injured. If you were OK to atleast speak to your team members then you could have communicated to them over mobile or some means.

The workplace you are in may not be congenial for you to work if you are convinced that you cannot strike a cordial relationship with your reporting boss.

My only request is even before we start pointing fingers at others we need to dwell upon our own deeds that led to such a situation.

Regards

M.V.Kannan
From India, Madras
#Anonymous
Dear Kannan,

Thanks for your comments.From the time i have started working with her, there have been many instances where she used to behave very rude and sarcatic.I never used to bother myself much because that was her nature.May be as you told this could be an outcome of all the unspoken things between us.

Just wanted to correct myself on some points.

In fact once i was back from hospital,i had immediately send her a mail stating my health status as she did not pick up my call.Paralalley i was in touch with my members over phone guidng them.Its then she called up and told i need to quit and she will manage all the projects by herself.I was taken a back with her sudden change in behavior.When ever i tried to help in the way possible with the restrictions of my health ,she just started showering all sarcastic sms and emails.I did not have a choice,but to keep shut.



Also the plan which i had worked out was being followed by my team members.I did not expect her to take the trouble of execution.They had to approach her only in case of doubts as i was not in a position to sit and review as i was on bed rest.

Also as per our company policy,if an employee is met with an accident,she is suppossed to inform our commerical team,which she did not and also told them that i was not reporting to office.

I have been handling bigger teams and have been part of bigger projects.As you told there is no time limit to the job precisely because you end up working 12-14 hrs in office and then another 2-3 hours at home.But when i met with an accident and was not in a position to even sit.i was perplexed the way company was behaving.
From India, Bangalore
Dear Suchizmail,
Thank you for responding with your explanation. Forget the past and keep moving along. There also professional Managers who will lend a helping hand in a crisis situation. Unfortunately your current boss seems to lack the humane approach. As you have rightly pointed out do not dwell there and feel depressed move out as quickly as possible. May be the almighty has something better in store for you
Regards
M.V.Kannan
From India, Madras
Hello Suchizmail,
All one can say in the present situation & context is: ALL THE BEST.
By coincidence, I posted this Quote in another thread--which seems to be very apt for your situation too:
This is a Quote by Alexander Graham Bell [the Inventor of the Telephone] that I think I have mentioned earlier in CiteHR w.r.t. some other threads: "When one door closes, He opens other DOORS--but we so often keep staring at the closed door that we fail to notice the ones that He opened for us"--the key word being 'doors'--IN PLURAL.
Hope you get the point.
All the Best.
Rgds,
TS
From India, Hyderabad
#Anonymous
Dear all,

Thank you so much for all the valuable suggestions and feedback.With the encouragement from all of you and support from my family,i decided to aproach my CEO on this matter.

After further dicussions ,it was very clear that the HR head and My super boss was of no use in this matter and was only favouring my Boss stating that they knew her since 3 yrs and no body had raised any such complaints against her till now.On the point of my salary being stopped because of the rumours spread by my boss,the HR head simply wrote an inconveneince note and tried to close it. when i asked for a transfer to some other unit,they just told me that currently there are no vacancies in the company that would 'meet my expectations'.So my only option was to quit and go.I knew that i was not at fault and mustered all my courage and wrote to the CEO of my company.To my surprise.he actually responded to me and enquired on what had happened.He directly conducted investigation from his end on this matter and got to know about the facts.So then my Boss and team played a different game to tarnish my reputation in front of him by saying that my performance was weak.But,he being a rational person, and taking into consideration the circumstantial evidence,he directly offered me an opportunity to work in a different department.Now every body in the organization knows that my Boss has done wrong,but since she is handling some very important accounts,they will not take any action against her.

I would be joining the new team tomorrow and now nobody has a say,as the CEO has directly taken this up.Now i have got a chance to prove myself again to all of them who pointed fingers against me.Because of all this,I also got an opportunity to interact with another very senior person in my company and it was his advise to me not to quit if i was right that encouraged me to stand up against all odds.I was fighting a lone battle and was going through such mental trauma,but his guidance really helped me to do the right thing.Today when i got the call from the CEO's office congratulating me on the team movement and on having the guts to bring it to his notice,i just thanked god for being with me.

This incident actually taught me few lessons too,ie

Approach any situation rationally and not emotionally

If wrong is being done to you,have an open discussion with your boss and let him//her know your feelings if possible(In my case i was silently taking all the nonsense as i did not have the courage to openly talk and at the end had to suffer like this)

Very important to discuss such things with some one senior in the organization,as they would be able to guide you through this or atleast would be able to tell you how your organization would deal with such instances.

Finally,believe in yourself and make a real effort then,Truth will finally win
From India, Bangalore
Hello Suchizmail,

At the outset, a BIG Congrats for making the change in the positive direction. All the BEST.

However, some of your comments/remarks/conclusions do look lopsided.

"I was fighting a lone battle.....' is quite far from truth--since you had HIM on your side, with your family, CEO & CiteHR playing their own small roles in the whole experience of yours. And He was on your side, since you adhered to BOTH Truth & Dharma. And Alexander Graham Bell's Quote does play-out when one least expects it.

"Approach any situation rationally and not emotionally"--your presumption/conclusion seems to be veering towards another extreme from one.

There will ALWAYS be situations that need to be handled 'thru the head' [in your words 'rationally'] & some situations that need to be handled thru the heart [[in your words 'emotionally']. The problem comes when one tries to handle 'thru the heart' what needs to be handled 'thru the head', and vice-versa & sometimes mixing-up both the approaches [primarily emanating from confusion/misplacing of priorities]. For example, your Boss/HR Head/Super boss would fall into the III category of mixing-up. That's basic human nature--the tendency to move from one extreme of the pendulum-swing to the other.

Hope you get the point.

"Believe in yourself and make a real effort then,Truth will finally win"--absolutely RIGHT--like the Saying goes: God helps those who help themselves.

There are a few other aspects in this experience of yours that I notice--but that would become heavy stuff I guess.

For the present I am sure you wish to focus on your new assignment--ALL THE BEST again.

Rgds,

TS
From India, Hyderabad
#Anonymous
Absolutely TS.now i realize that I really have HIM with me .Other wise such a turn of events is quite unexpected .It is a surprise to everyone in my organization.
I never wanted to leave this organization as it was my dream job.But did not really know how to handle such a situation.I really appreciate the genuine comments and responses from all you seniors as it really gave me some food for thought.
I am thankful to every one who has given me the courage and strength to hold on till the end.
From India, Bangalore
Dear Anonymous
Hearty congratulations for standing for the value of candor(conviction of being frank) and and courage and won the battle agaisnt manipulation and bias under the able guidance of a well meaning senior and with the help of an understanding impartial CEO. I remember Paulo Coelho the author of his widely read book "Alchemist" saying somewhere in the book that when you have the right 'spirit' and the 'will', the entire universe conspires to help you in winning the battles.Probably and as tajsateesh said, that is the reason, you got a guiding senior, an understanding CEO, your family and members of citehr, howsoever small may be their contribution, on your side in your struggle to vindicate the truth..
Wishing a great career ahead.
B.Saikumar
HR & Labour law Advisor
Mumbai
From India, Mumbai
Hi Suchimail :
It is great to hear your problem is resolved. I am sure it will be a inspiration for those who may be dealing with similar problems.
Members often post their problems/issue but rarely a few of them like you post the conclusive results. ALL THE BEST for your new assignment.
TS : Thanks for sharing your insights. It helps to get a wider perspective.
- Gia
From India, Pune
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