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Submitted by robby.elliott@m... on


Hello everyone! I have a subordiante supervisor (Amy) who, in certain aspects, cares too much about her direct reports. I know that sounds super wierd but here is an example of the stuff I am talking about:

Our department provides staffing (stagehands and production personnel) to clients (usually touring rock shows and boradways shows) and often times schedules change at the last minute. For example, yesterday a theater company whose show opens today was scheduled to be in at 5:00 PM for a 7:30 PM start time. Well they did not get finished building the set yesterday (mostly because they were unorganized) so they now need to come in at 12:00 PM. We schedule on an as needed basis so this results in one of our staff having to change his personal schedule to come in early. This happens pretty routinely (a couple of times a week) and we do not have the budget to hire staff to anticipate these changes. Amy has had a difficult time with the fact that we are routinely causing hardships to the employees.

I have talked with her about it pretty extensivly and her heart is very much in the right place but she needs to learn or internalize somehow that, on a certain level, her staff sometimes need to be considered resources that you place rather than people who you conistantly do a disservice to. Given the fact I have never served in the military i feel somewhat wierd about using this analogy but on a certain level a general has to view his soldiers as resources and sometime has to send them on objectives where he/she knows there will be a lot of hardship and/or loss of life. Amy fully understands that and agrees with it but still has an emotional problem with it.

Does anyone have any experience with this type of thing or can anyone recommend any resources that can help convey this type of thinking in a better way to help her thinkin this manner? BTW all of her directs understand the situation and are as okay with it as they can be...



US41's picture

Are you having one on one's with Amy?

Do you have a coaching plan for Amy?

Also, someone's feelings are internal settings to them. They have a right to feel any way they want to about something, but they don't have a right to make bad business decisions based on those feelings or fail to perform their duties because of it. 

In fact, I'd recommend giving feedback about expressing those feelings publicly in any way where the employees or management can see it.