Q: I am in a very difficult position with the company I work for.
The President/CEO hired his nephew to be Operations Manager
at the end of last year. Since then, there have been numerous
difficulties. He has told several female employee's (including
myself) that we are his f****** b*****s, when in my office he
has replied to another employee's i-chat inquiry saying
"I'm busy, stop bugging me", when I have always told fellow
employee's that I'm never to busy to be asked a question.
The list goes on. I have brought these issues to the President/CEO
and VP of Operations attention (they are ex-husband/wife and I
report to the 2 of them). I do know that they spoke with him about
it, but he continues to create a hostile work environment and it
has gotten to the point where I don't like coming in to work.
I have explained all of this, however, because it is the owner's
nephew, I feel like he is getting by lightly and nothing seems
to get resolved. I could look for another job, however, I am in
my 50's and I just want to be able to retire from this job. It pays
well and has great benefits.
Could you please provide insight as to how to truly handle this very
A: Your situation sounds very uncomfortable. I will try my best to give you some guidance and help. Have you approached the nephew and discussed the items with him that make you uncomfortable? Typically the first person to speak with regarding any issue that may constitute harassment is the person causing the problem. Have you asked him to stop? If that doesn't resolve the problem, then the next step is the manager. Since it sounds as if you have already done that and the problem continues...does the company have an HR department? If so, you should go there and speak with the manager or director. Are there others that are experiencing the same treatment or subjected to the unprofessional behavior (you mentioned several other females). How do the others feel? Are they offended or feel as if this is creating a hostile environment? If so, the entire group should approach HR or the manager. I'm not sure the size of your company or the state in which you work, but there are laws in place that protect against this sort of thing. If the company allows this behavior to go on, you could file a complaint with the local employment or labor office, or you could go to the EEOC.
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