Boss excludes only me from one-on-ones
November 13, 2012 1:07 AM Subscribe
Boss offered to sit down with everyone in my department, but ignores my responses to set up a time (and just mine). What do I do?
posted by AppleTurnover to Human Relations (57 answers total)
(Sorry this ended up so long.)
I work in a bit of a unique situation. It's a special project that just ended, so we all lose our jobs. My boss has emailed my department offering to sit down with each of us to discuss our next steps for jobs. That's great. But he emailed us all a couple weeks ago offering and I said I was free anytime and he ignored it. And then a couple days ago he emailed me and a couple other people saying basically, "We still haven't met so let me know if you are free tomorrow." I wrote back and said I was free all day and again he ignored it. I checked with the other two people on that followup email and they sent the same types of responses to him, and he set up times and places and met with them today. I don't know what to make of this.
The possibilities I see are: 1) He missed my emails both times. Extremely doubtful. 2) He doesn't like me. I have skipped a lot of departmental social outings because I have social anxiety (not something I tell people, so people normally just think I hate them). I also am generally nervous and awkward around him because he's my boss and bosses intimidate me, so maybe he doesn't like being around me for that reason. 3) He thinks I sucked as an employee. He never said anything to me to make me think he had a major problem with how I performed at work. (There were a couple instances where he got pissed at me, but I was a middleman and they absolutely weren't my fault - not that I think he recognized that. But everyone has tense moments or small mistakes at some point and I don't think two instances where he got annoyed at me defined my entire employment there.) It was a pretty autonomous role, so I don't think he saw what I did most the time anyway, which kind of sucked, because I really couldn't show him how I was valuable. But really, he never saw when I did things that worked right and did see anytime I messed up or tried to leave early (I literally picked the worst days everytime I tried to leave a little earlier than usual) so maybe he thinks I sucked and he wouldn't refer me to anyone, so that's why he doesn't want to meet.
What should I do? He is leaving at the end of the week and meeting will be out of the question after that. I can't shake the feeling that it's a combination of 2 and 3, in which case, I don't want to email him again or call him and force a meeting. Meeting with someone who dislikes me and doesn't want to refer me for any jobs is not going to help me in any way. And being in a meeting with someone who doesn't like me and thinks I suck sounds miserable -- I am extremely sensitive to social rejection (hence social anxiety) so I don't want to force a meeting if 2 and 3 are the case. Should I just send an email thanking him for my time there and wish him the best and be done with it? I honestly find it humiliating that he would offer to have these sit downs and then ignore my responses. I mean, he should've just "accidentally" left me off the emails. It hurts my feelings and I kind of want him to know how uncool it was, but would I look insane if I mentioned that the other two people said they met with him and I never heard back from him either times, so I assume he doesn't want to meet with me? I almost want to email him and confess I have social anxiety and apologize for not being more social or ask if there was something I need to do to improve my work performance. But I realize, if I am not dead-on correct in my assessment of his feelings, I will look crazy.
The truth is, this whole ordeal has really bothered me. Out of the blue, I feel like I have behaved in such a way that this guy is leaving this experience hating me and he waited to show it until the end when he had no obligations as a boss to me anymore. By all accounts he was a good/reasonable/nice boss and it makes me feel like absolute shit. I didn't have any illusions that he and I would remain friends after this or that he'd be going of out his way to get me jobs -- I already felt disappointed with how this experience went -- but the fact that he seems so adverse to a meeting that he offered just hurts. I've sobbed very hard over this and I almost want to ignore the whole situation. Given how I've ignored all the offers for social outings, I'm not sure that would surprise him or look unusual. But this feels like a very odd way to end this experience. Normally, I'd just send my boss a goodbye email thanking them, but now it feels embarrassing, like he is going to read it and roll his eyes or get more annoyed by my email.
Is there an objectively best way to respond to this situation? I don't feel rational anymore.
This post was deleted for the following reason: poster's request -- cortex