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Question for an experienced supervisor

post #1 of 8
Thread Starter 
I have a fairly new supervisor at work. At one time she had been just one of the workers. One problem is that this supervisor doesn't believe in complaining, and so far, she hasn't helped us get any work-related problems resolved. When we go to her with a problem she just seems to forget all about it, and this is very frustrating. She also seems to be a very unassertive person who is really afraid to speak up.

Is there anything we can do to improve this situation?
post #2 of 8
Sounds like she's fearful of tackling problems. Some people see problems as threatening, instead of challenges where opportunity exists. Is she open to learning from subordinates?
post #3 of 8
Thread Starter 
Some of us have a lot more knowledge about the company than she does because we have worked there longer, and she is willing to listen to what we have to say.
post #4 of 8
My husband is dealing with a problem like that. Not manager material this guy is. The only way Darrell can get anything done is if he goes above this guy's head. Sometimes that's what you need to do to get something resolved... but that doesn't mean you should do it. That's just my hubby.
post #5 of 8
When you go to her with a problem, do you also have a potential solution in mind? Its kind of difficult to be very specific, but you may have better luck if you say, This is what is bothering me, This is what you might do about it.

Of course that would mean you are doing her job for her, but she sounds like she needs some help learning how to be a supervisor, and if you help, your job will be more pleasant.
post #6 of 8
Lorie - I know in my company, we have supervisors and managers. If the supervisor isn't getting it done, we go to the manager. Now, I don't know if you have that type of situation, but possible speaking to her boss about your fears would help. I know this can create a situation where someone might react badly, but the truth is, you are doing it for the sake of the comapny, and really the company will appreciate that, or at least it should.

If that isn't your style, you can always approach your supervisor and let her know what your fears and issues are with the job she is doing. Sometimes we don't really realize we aren't doing a good job until someone brings it to light.

How long has she been supervisor? Is there a chance she just needs more time?

Either way, I think you need to speak to someone about the problem.

I am big believer of talking. *grin* Good luck.
post #7 of 8
Lorie: I agree with Tamme on this. I have been a "supervisor" myself, and I have also worked with a few superiours like that as well. If you do decide to talk to someone above this lady, make sure you know what it is you want to say ahead of time, and state it clearly, but don't try to come across as if your trying to get this person down right fired.

Like others have said, come up with a plan or solution that you would like to see happen here. You guys are all trying to do your work, and this supervisor is imparing that ability.

Good luck!
post #8 of 8
My last manager was not assertive at all and didn't like to make waves. When we had a problem and went to her individually about them she never did anything.

We decided to go as a group to her with our problems. Actually, we arranged a meeting with her in the morning. We specifically stated our problems and that certain issues had to be addressed for the sake of the department.

She did tackle some of the problems but not all of them. It finally came to the point that we had to go above her head, but at least we approached her first. Also, approaching the issues as a group greatly helped the situation since our concerns were taken more seriously.

Good luck.

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