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What Doesn't Work

Recently Ted, a nice coworker, joined my group. We work together on all projects and share ideas and communication with our manager on a daily basis.

Ted started carpooling with the boss. At that point, he changed. What were joint projects, did Ted make his own? When I tried to contact our boss to do the same, it was obvious he prefers Ted. The two of them talk at home and go to church together.

I have been in my group for over two years and work hard to be creative. Now I find any time I do something, Ted quickly takes over. He always beats me to the punch. I am not trying to be petty, but it is getting ridiculous. The job I have been striving for is finally open. There is a trickled rumor the boss has nominated Ted.

Let me review the facts. I have been here longer, worked harder, and am overdue for promotion, a thought shared by coworkers. I mentioned this to a higher-level boss, who in turn looked at me as a troublemaker.

Direct contact with Ted would be dynamite because of his attitude, but this isn't right. The more waves I make, the more I look bad, so I am hoping to get some advice on possible strategies.


Donald, certain situations are hopeless. You don't want to hear this, but this is one of them. In many situations, the social game outweighs merit. You can list all the facts you want, but it won't change the main fact. Your manager prefers this new employee to you.

There can be a wide range of reasons for this. Your manager may feel you are far too valuable where you are, or you may simply lack the bootlicking skills to succeed in this particular workplace.

The new employee is not the enemy. Look at him in broader terms. He might be the wrench thrown at your life to stimulate a reaction, a reexamination of where you want to go. The writer James Michener once said, "The job of an apple tree is to bear apples. The job of a storyteller is to tell stories." What is your real job in life?

The only strategy to consider is where your life is going. This includes determining if you choose to remain with this company, if you should pursue more education, or if you are even in the right field.

Wayne & Tamara

Wayne & Tamara are also the authors of Cheating in a Nutshell, What Infidelity Does to the Victim, available from Amazon, Apple, and most booksellers.


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