My Boss seems to be cutting me out of being able to effectively manage my direct reports - I've tried communicating my frustrations and was basically shut down - any advice?
I've posted some frustrations before, but a little bit of background before I get into the details. My original boss left in mid-Decemeber, leaving her boss to manage her programs and myself and my colleagues. Additionally I will be going on maternity leave within the next 3.5 weeks max.
My boss has been giving my direct reports tasks and projects - I'm not against it, it's perfectly in his right to do that as the boss. However the problem arises when I am not kept in the loop about what they are even working on. For example:
- He had a couple of my direct reports working on a marketing reach out project - I was not involved in any part of this - really the only way I knew it was happening is that one of my direct reports mentioned something about it to me. But then in a meeting the other day - he asks me if they had a deadline for working on that project. I politely said "I was not involved in any part of that, I really only knew it was happening because one of them mentioned it to me"
- He had a 1:1 with one of my Direct reports and instructed her to delegate a bulk of her work so she would have the free time to take on what I was delegating to her when I'm on maternity leave. I've already spoken with him about who is doing my tasks and created a table that shows who is doing what, what the task is, and the typical frequency of that task and I have gone through it with him. I delegated 2 things to my direct report, and it wasn't anything she couldn't take care of (very small tasks that don't occur frequently).
I know they're minor things - but I wouldn't have even known about any of this or what he was wanting my direct reports to do without them telling me.
I had sent him my weekly recap and also mentioned that I was a little frustrated that I was being kept out of the loop. I also mentioned that I knew he wasn't our old manager, but She typically included me in the meetings where she would give my direct reports instructions, talk to me first about it and have me take care of it, or just include me in the messages. I told him it's hard to manage effectively when I don't even know what they're all working on.
He came back with this reply:
I am the business Unit lead for MN, I am now in charge of XXXX & YYYY programs and I will making decisions and changes as I see fit. I am letting everyone know what is going on the best I can and I am sorry if you feel the way you do.
I know Jane Doe reports to you but she reports to me in concern for XXXX & YYYY so I am making updates for her to figure out her workload out for these two programs.
I am frustrated by this response because the XXXX & YYYY Programs are the only thing she works on... so what am I really managing? I know some of you might bring up that he might be doing it because I'm going on maternity leave. But I personally think even with me leaving on maternity leave he shouldn't be excluding me from these things.
I also understand it's a different manager and a different style, but I felt like his response was basically like - I'm the boss, don't question how I do things, I do what I want. My previous supervisor was collaborative and always included me and kept me in the loop about things and how to work with my direct reports - I feel like I've been demoted and pushed down since she left...
Am I overreacting or is this acceptable behavior - maybe he's just not communicating it well? At this point do I just put up with it till I leave on maternity leave?