I was hired as an account analyst for a healthcare company about three months ago. They have an eighteenth-month probationary period, which I have no problem with, but I wasn’t given any guidelines, nor have I received a lick of feedback on any of my work. My boss is extremely busy, which he tells me every time he sees me, so I don’t feel right about engaging him in any kind of discussion about what I’m doing. I just try to go with his flow. Some people have said that no news is good news, but I fear that such an attitude could blow up in my face when the probationary period is over with. What do you think I should do?
Dear Feedback needed:
As a probationary employee, you need substantive feedback, and ideally, it should be face-to-face. Take the initiative and ask your boss for a date and time to meet so you can provide him with an overview of your work performance thus far, and determine if you are on track in meeting the standards and expectations of the job. In addition to being prepared to discuss your work, have a document detailing all that you have accomplished and what you will be working on next. Ask him to commit to regular progress review meetings throughout your probationary period, understanding that the date and times are subject to change given his heavy work load. Hopefully, he will respect and appreciate your interest and drive and respond favorably. Best of luck!
This may sound petty but I’ve had it with one of my colleague’s unwillingness to pitch in. In the ad agency where I work, most everyone gets in around 9:00 AM, but this colleague and I get in way before everyone else, so we’re expected to start up the coffee. Without fail, I always get stuck doing it even when she’s in before me. She always makes a beeline for the kitchen when she arrives, and exits just as quickly when she sees no coffee has been made. The snooty person that she is reinforces my distinct feeling that she thinks making the office coffee is beneath her. Regardless of why she doesn’t make it, I’m tired of having to do it all the time. Any suggestions?
Dear Anger percolating:
I suggest that you have a frank but respectful discussion with your colleague. There is a possibility that she may not know how to make the coffee because she has never had to do it; or she may believe, like you sense, that it is not something she should have to do. Either way, tell her that you need her to share responsibility for this task. Request her help in putting together a schedule that will evenly split the task between the two of you. If you get a sense that she does not know how to make coffee, offer to show her how you make it, indicating that it can be a tricky process.
In my February 16th column ("Worker humiliated when asking for advance") my advice for the reader ("… move onward and upward.") may have been misunderstood. I meant that the person should not give up but stay the course and do the job he was hired to do. I in no way meant for the person to quit his job.
© 2010 Rozanne R. Worrell