I took a new job ten months ago with a team that I had worked with previously, and knew the expectations of the role quite well. Since joining, I've been given several commendations for my work performance. One of the few downsides is that I'm on my fourth manager in ten months, but performance-wise, it's been going great!
There's really only one aspect of my new role that hasn't been going so well: My 'team lead' has been absolutely atrocious when it comes to being inclusive. When I was brought on board, I was introduced as 'new girl' to several important stakeholders rather than by my name and role (I'm a professional, and haven't been referred to as 'girl' in several years in a formal setting). While trying to learn the latest processes and procedures, it was incredibly difficult to get the team lead to tell me anything about the processes and systems used. Around the 6-month mark I found myself being on a call where a someone in the C-suite was thanking our team for recently completing a project - that was the first time I learned about our 'team project'.
I tried several methods to solve the issues I was facing on my own, especially since we had changed managers three times over 8 months. My previous attempts to reconcile the situation included informal chats, team conversations, and direct confrontation about the communication issues we had been having . . . Unfortunately, I exhausted all the tools in my book with no resolution. Ten months in, after finding myself in several similar situations and constantly being talked over, interrupted, or flat-out ignored, I decided to take action. I finally realized I needed extra help from my (very new) manager and reached out to them. . . and I'm so glad I did!
While meeting with my new manager, I tried to phrase the situation as professionally as possible (even though I'm completely fed up with my team lead at this point) and focused on the fact that my team lead was not being inclusive, and that we were not performing at our best because of the situation. I gave several examples of situations that had occurred along with approximate dates. Luckily, my new manager has observed some of the same problem behaviors and agreed that it's time to step in based on the fact that I've tried problem-solving on my own several times and am still not being included.
While we are still in the beginning of implementing a new inclusion strategy for my team, I'm positive that things will only get better from here. I sincerely hope that anyone else out there who is struggling to be included can read my story find some helpful hints of how to deal with a similar situation. If you're facing an inclusion problem and need help, keep records and try to problem-solve, but most importantly - speak up! There are wonderful people out there who can help ensure you are given a seat at the table where you belong.
Has anyone else successfully (or unsuccessfully) navigated through a similar situation? I would love to hear more tools and techniques I can potentially use while I work to develop a relationship with my new manager and work through issues with my team lead.
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