Dear Aunty B,
I am a manager and have one director out of multiple directors who has taken a dislike to me and has been telling lies to other directors about me. These are so fanciful that the other directors come to me and ask me ‘is that the truth or lies?’
This director has lied to them in the past. Their advice to me is to document it, and do nothing else. This has been going on for a year.
My gut feeling now is I need to find another job where my efforts are appreciated. What do you suggest?
Ms. Stressed Out
Dear Ms. Stressed Out,
Before you rush to find another job, have a think about what you can do to fix the situation first.
Have you tried to resolve the matter directly with the director involved? If you don’t feel comfortable doing this is there a direct manager you can speak to or HR representative (if your business has one).
I asked Abiramie Sathiamoorthy, co-founder of HR firm E&I People Solutions and SmartCompany blogger what you should do next. She says your manager should be able to help resolve the issue, which may include mediation between you and the director to resolve the situation.
“You also have the option to formalise the complaint and are encouraged to do so particularly if you feel you are being harassed or bullied (it’s important you fully understand the definitions of these in the workplace) as a result of the lies/rumors being spread,” Sathiamoorthy says.
“If you want to do this it’s important you document specific events and also state what your preferred outcome is, i.e. what’s an acceptable resolution.”
If you have exhausted all options internally and you don’t feel that anything is being done to fix the issue you can go directly to the Fair Work Commission and lodge a complaint that Fair Work will then assess.
But Sathiamoorthy says in the end you need to consider whether the values and culture of the business you work for is an environment you align to and want to continue working in long term.
If not, this lie-spreading director could be a positive opportunity to make a change and find a role and environment you really enjoy.
Your Aunty B