our new team lead is horrible and keeps sharing private details about us with our colleagues

A reader writes:

My coworker, let’s call her Kate, recently got promoted to a team lead role on the team. For the sake of transparency, I was in consideration for this role as well and was the second choice if she didn’t accept. While I’m a little upset about this, I have only been at the company for four months as opposed to Kate’s two years, and my manager Stacey and my dotted line manager Josh have given me other responsibilities and projects to really help make me visible in the department so I will be promoted in a few months.

It has been two weeks since Kate has accepted the role. Here is just a snippet of everything that has happened:

1. During the interview process, Kate told me and the other candidates not bother even applying because they created this position with her in mind and they just had to interview other people as a technicality. This caused at least one internal candidate to withdraw their application. When the internal candidate was asked why she was withdrawing her application, she told both Stacy and Josh about what Kate said.

2. Kate told the entire team she is now leading that she got the role, even though Stacy and Josh asked her to not say anything until they could tell everyone themselves in case anyone had questions about our management tree and how this promotion will change our day to day.

3. Kate disclosed to the team that Stacy had a close family member die suddenly and that Josh was working from home because of a family emergency (she included full details of why Josh was out). Both Stacy and Josh chose to not tell us those details.

4. Kate openly discussed my pay raise (because of my added responsibilities) in front of my coworkers without me present. I’m not opposed to talking about salaries in the work place, it just feels gross coming from someone from a management-like role.

5. Kate openly talked about performance reviews on the team and compared our individual goals and areas we need to work on to each other. Example from yesterday: “Hey, (my name), can you let Jane work on this? Stacy put Jane on a PIP and this will help her strengthen that skill.”

How do I work around this? I’m just at a total loss.

Everybody on the team is highly uncomfortable and we are thinking about banding together to talk to Stacy and Josh about this, but I’m worried about the optics since I was in consideration for this role and one of my other teammates is the internal candidate who withdrew her application because Kate told her it was pointless to apply. That would leave only one teammate and that’s not really a group.

Please talk to Stacy and Josh! They can’t manage Kate effectively if they don’t know what’s going on.

You’re not going to look like you have sour grapes over not getting the job because your concerns are all well-founded and reasonable! I get why you’re worried about it, but there’s no “you can never raise concerns about the person who got the job you applied for” rule (and if there were, it would mean you could never work under someone who got the job you wanted, because you have to have a way to express concerns when there serious problems).

It would be different if your concerns about Kate were petty ones — if you were complaining that she was a few minutes late every day or was taking longer than you would have to get up to speed on the X project — but that’s not the case. Your concerns are serious ones. Disclosing private details about someone’s family emergency, sharing your pay rate without permission in a company that doesn’t have a culture of salary transparency, and casually slipping in that a team member is on a PIP are all Big Deal Signs that Kate needs better training and oversight.

And that’s the thing — you won’t be saying “Kate sucks and needs to be fired” (although that might be true). You’ll be saying, “Kate is violating our privacy in multiple ways and we’d like you to give her more training in her obligations as a team lead.”

It is concerning to me that Stacy and Josh apparently know about some of the red flags with Kate (like that she told other candidates not to bother applying for the job) and haven’t acted. Although it’s possible they did act behind the scenes (like by having a stern conversation with her about it). Or, who knows, they might have hoped it was a one-time instance of bad judgment and not addressed it. Either of those scenarios would underscore the need for you to talk to them now since if they already had concerns, they need to know the problems go deeper than they’d realized … and if they don’t know there’s a pattern, they need to hear about it before it gets worse.

So, yes, please band together with your other coworkers and talk to Stacy and Josh. Your concerns are big enough that it’s not going to look like you’re just jealous you didn’t get the job.

Read updates to this letter here and here.

{ 197 comments… read them below }

  1. urguncle*

    This sounds like a former boss of mine who was promoted from within and recently was asked to leave the company after damaging not only her department but the entire company.

          1. BatManDan*

            I’m hoping for a factual retelling, written in a tone that I can imagine being narrated in a dramatic voice!

    1. Alexander Graham Yell*

      …very curious if we work for the same company right now. I know it’s not likely, but I’ll be watching the OT on Friday just in case.

  2. Lucious*

    >> So, yes, please band together with your other coworkers and talk to Stacy and Josh. Your concerns are big enough that it’s not going to look like you’re just jealous you didn’t get the job.

    Good advice. One word of caution- LW should determine how much support Kate has in the organization. It will be pointless to involve Stacy & Josh if they’ve already independently escalated her issues and got nowhere. If a toxic manager isn’t considered toxic by people in a position to correct their behavior, any feedback on their faults will be dismissed.

    Further -regardless of the justified concerns raised- given what’s been stated about Kate there’s a risk she’ll spin a false narrative that OP is just being sour about losing the promotion.

    1. I'm just here for the cats*

      I would also add that it might add more to the complaint if more than just the OP talks to Stacy and Josh. Like if there was a way a group could go and talk that would show that its not just this one person who is having these concerns.

    2. SofiaDeo*

      Not necessarily a caution re:trying to determine “how much support Kate has”. If there are continued complaints regarding staff that initially might not have been seen to be considered a big deal –especially if there were unknown private convos to that person not shared with the staff– continued, documented repetitions are necessary. If Stacey & Josh don’t continue to repeat the objections to higher ups, that’s another issue. But continue to report/document, THEN consider asking Stacey/Josh what’s being done, before considering escalating over their head. It’s usually not appropriate to go over a boss’s head, but I won’t say it’s never ever appropriate. Kate’s inability to keep a lid on sensitive stuff is enough of a red flag to consider doing this.

    3. BethRA*

      OP has only been with the company for a few months, that’s not necessarily information they have access to.

      Even if Kate is favored by TPTB, unless OP thinks Stacy and Josh will throw OP under the bus,? That doesn’t make Josh or Stacy completely powerless, and that’s for them to figure out.

    4. Happy*

      Even if Stacy and Josh have escalated complaints about Kate in the past and not gotten anywhere, it’s still good for them to know that Kate continues to act unprofessionally. It’s not like they should just give up.

    5. anonymous73*

      How much support Kate has in the org shouldn’t keep OP and their team from talking to Stacy & Josh. It’s something to hold onto in their mind, sure, but these things need to be brought to Stacy & Josh’s attention ASAP. The things Kate has done are bad enough, but the fact that it’s only happened over a period of a few weeks makes it so much worse.

    6. The OTHER Other*

      I mostly agree here. I think given the extent of Kate’s lack of boundaries/judgment displayed here it’s likely this has been a longstanding issue and the bosses know and don’t care. They DID know that Kate had discouraged someone else from applying, and seem OK with it.

      I’d say there’s a good chance that Kate’s issues are dismissed with typical “that’s just the way she is” nonsense.

      I would still move forward with bringing concerns to the managers, I just wouldn’t have high hopes.

    7. RebelwithMouseyHair*

      “If a toxic manager isn’t considered toxic by people in a position to correct their behavior, any feedback on their faults will be dismissed.”
      That is indeed true, but if you don’t say anything, you can be sure nothing will happen, so what do you suggest instead?

  3. my cat is prettier than me*

    Your concerns definitely are not petty, and that will be particularly evident if you band together as a group.

    1. Wants Green Things*

      Agreed. These are some serious privacy violations, and all before she’s even officially started the role! You and coworkers absolutely need to bring this to the attention of Stacey and John, using Alison’s language. This *will* spiral out of control if it’s not controlled now.

    2. Momma Bear*

      And bring documentation where available. Who else heard her talk about the PIP and/or your salary, for example?

  4. Critical Rolls*

    The earlier this gets addressed, the better. Kate is doing damage, and it’s in everyone’s interest to limit that, whether that involves correcting the behavior, demoting her, or letting her go.

    This will also tell you whether Stacy and Josh are going to deal with it like they should, or if the new normal at your job is… this.

    1. Aggretsuko*

      Yeah, if they were still fine with Kate after Kate drove out a candidate–and they noticed and asked about it–bad sign?

        1. RunShaker*

          +1000 and it seems Stacy & Josh didn’t reach out to person that withdrew to invite them to interview. I wonder how Josh would react though upon hearing all his personal details were shared.

      1. Not Tom, Just Petty*

        I understand that the employee who dropped out of consideration told both Stacey and Josh, but maybe one of them (S&J) was less attentive/concerned about it than the other. “If second candidate REALLY wanted it, she wouldn’t have dropped out. This is not on Kate.”
        And when Kate broke the news about her promotion, maybe on of S&J was not aware, or chalked it up to excitement. Like OK, one piece of bad judgement.
        I’m trying to say, that if OP (and coworkers) talk to S&J, they may find that the two of them have not compared notes. In their respective minds they have a couple separate incidents. When both get a full list, it may make them really reevaluate.

    2. Important Moi*

      Unless I am misreading, Kate and LW were THE candidates. Other candidates weren’t going to considered. So there’s no problem with withdrawing an application when the winner and second place have been preselected.

      I guess the issue is Kate violated some sort of secrecy? To me that’s a separate issue from the waste of time of a submitting an application when you have no chance.

      1. Lenora Rose*

        LW was second place at some point in the process; we don’t know when. If that was the “after the interview” result, then there was a point to interviewing because another person interviewing might have changed that result. Kate claimed she was preselected, but neither Kate nor LW claim LW was preselected, and LW does not even assert Kate was correct in her belief.

      2. Nanani*

        It sounds more like Kate believed she was the only “real” candidate and the other candidates, including LW, didn’t have a shot. We don’t know if that’s literally true or just something Kate made up to get others to drop out.

        1. londonedit*

          That’s how I read it. Kate was going around telling everyone that there was no point in them even interviewing, because the position had been created especially for her and the other interviews were just a formality. I don’t think that was remotely true, and I don’t think anyone had been pre-selected, it was just Kate trying to big herself up and put the wind up the other candidates. At least one other candidate believed this and withdrew (or perhaps withdrew because they thought it would be too much hassle dealing with Kate for the rest of the interview process) but the OP ignored Kate’s attempts at stirring the pot and kept themselves in the running.

  5. Evelyn Carnahan*

    This sounds like a former boss of mine whose contract was not renewed. My concern is that, given that Stacy and Josh promoted her despite another internal candidate telling them they withdrew based on Katie’s statements about the job being made for her. It is possible that they approached Katie about this privately, but it shows some bad judgment on their part. I might be biased by my experience with my former boss. When I reported similar behavior to her boss, her boss decided that I was just upset I wasn’t in charge anymore and undermining my boss (I was never in charge in the first place!).

    1. HigherEdAdminista*

      I wonder if it would help by leading with letting Stacy and Josh know all the details of their own business that she spread to everyone in the office. Since they didn’t share the details with the other members of the team, if they begin with that as an example of the ways Kate is violating everyone’s privacy, perhaps they will be more inclined to care.

      It sucks and makes question Stacy and Josh’s abilities as managers that they promoted her knowing that she was trying to intimidate other candidates out of the running, but sometimes people only care about this stuff when it directly impacts them. Josh knowing that you all know every detail of his family issues might light a fire!

      1. Evelyn Carnahan*

        So true! It’s also much harder to write off than the very valid complaints by people who did apply for the same position.

      2. CupcakeCounter*

        That’s sort of what I was thinking (although its very passive aggressive). Something like:
        OP: Hey Josh welcome back. I was so sorry to hear about (specific detail that shouldn’t be common knowledge) – is there anything I can do to help?
        Josh: Uh…thanks…How did you know about X?
        OP: Kate told us about your X and Stacy’s Y at the morning team meeting last week.
        Josh: Really. I’d really rather that be kept private so I’d appreciate if you didn’t talk about it.
        OP: I’m so sorry, I had no idea! Kate was talking about some line of command changes and task updates for the week and she let us know to go to her instead of you and Stacy because of those things and to loop Jane in on A & B since it would help her performance improve to get off the PIP so we wouldn’t lose her.

        Replace with Stacy or whatever…

        Ideally, OP and the rest of the team would just be direct but since she/they have concerns it will sound like sour grapes, this would be another option.

      3. Meep*

        Maybe I am jaded but I don’t see that happening. Then again, I am jaded and skeptical after pointing out my own Kate spread a rumor about Josh having an affair because his wife is a bitch (on top of sharing financial and medical information) two weeks ago so there is that…

        Either way I recommend OP manage her expectations going into this, because people suck.

    2. WFH is all I Want*

      There is always the possibility that the role was created for her and the hiring process does mandate interviewing other candidates. (That’s how it works at my soon-to-be former employer.)

      I would focus on areas where Kate needs training. She’s not leading, she’s just stirring the pot and creating drama. A class on tact and how to manage while maintaining confidentiality would be a good place to start. I would frame it as being in the company’s best interest since she is releasing information that could be covered by FMLA, ADA, and/or HIPPA. That would get HR’s attention at the very least.

      She could use some humility too.

      1. JBI*

        Some people are uncoachable.
        They might be better of just firing her instead of trying to convince themselves this can be fixed.

      2. fhqwhgads*

        HIPAA doesn’t apply here unless Kate is a health provider to the staff in question, which it sounds like she’s not. She’s just their supervisor/employee.

  6. MisterForkbeard*

    Each one of these things would get a talking to or disciplinary action at my company. You do not share PIP/performance details other than extremely vague “doing well” or “has some challenges and we’re working on it”, you don’t give details about personal life (though I admit I did this once when someone was out for 3 weeks – tried to explain to someone why they wouldn’t be back immediately and gave out more than I should have), you don’t talk about people’s pay raises (if you’re in management), and you respect your manager’s wishes regarding communications and timing of potentially sensitive news.

    They should bust her back down to her previous position and let her try again in 6 months.

    1. Presea*

      I presume your over-explaining moment was a one-off fluke of the sort that happens occasionally with human communication, which is a very different beast than the strong pattern of communication issues that’s happening here.

  7. RJ*

    Sadly, this is yet another example of promoting the wrong employee. OP, speak to Stacy and Josh. None of this is petty. It’s bad management on Katie’s part and extremely toxic behavior.

    1. Squid*

      It makes me wonder if Kate was a high-performing individual contributor who was promoted because of her performance alone instead of performance + demonstrated leadership skills/capabilities. Unfortunately an all-too-common situation.

      1. 36Cupcakes*

        This happened to me. Someone was there longer/stronger in different set of skills was promoted over me (she’s a friend, I’m not bitter but it was a bad call from above). She’s gone and now I’m doing it. She only lasted about 9 months sadly.

        1. Librarian of SHIELD*

          It happened to me, too, except I was the person who got promoted on the strength of my individual contributor skills. I realized right off the bat that I was in the deep end and every time I asked for help I was told I’d be fine because I’m such a great librarian, but a great librarian is not the same as a great manager. Without the right training and support, I didn’t last long either.

          1. Anonymous4*

            Being a manager is a tough job! It takes more than just technical skills to be a good one. And I keep declaring, “I’m technical and I’m going to stay technical,” because I keep getting prodded to “just” put in an application.

            “Just” put in an application for a position I don’t want? No thank you! Not happening!

      2. Not Tom, Just Petty*

        This sounds like the type of person Alison illustrates as a good contributor NOT a good employee. Working well with others, supporting your team, not actively upsetting people, not gossiping make a good employee. A contributor who grooms 2x the amount of llamas compared to second place llama washer can still be a bad employee…and a terrible leader.

  8. Momma Bear*

    If your overall actions and response to not getting the role are professional and reasonable, that should offset the perception that you are just out to get Kate. I’d keep it straightforward. It is not everyone else’s business who is on a PIP and I would be very concerned about her level of discretion (or lack thereof). I also think it’s relevant that Kate saw fit to tell everyone not to bother to the point that someone withdrew. It’s a pattern. All three of you share the same concerns. Please talk to Stacy and Josh.

  9. AnonEMoose*

    You and your coworkers definitely need to talk to Stacey and Josh about this. Kate is being, at best, wildly indiscreet and does not understand the boundaries management needs to maintain. If someone were to disclose a personal situation I was experiencing without my consent, I would be LIVID, and probably talking to HR (assuming there is HR and they’re not terrible). She is incredibly out of bounds, and if this is allowed to continue, what happens if someone needs to raise a harassment complaint or similar? Is Kate going to go telling everyone everything about it? Very not ok, and needs to be nipped in the bud yesterday!

    1. JelloStapler*

      At a large meeting: “And to wrap up, let’s talk about team climate- Does anyone other than OP have issues with me?”

      1. AnonEMoose*

        Here’s a hint for managers/supervisors, etc. If you ask about team climate, and literally everyone just exchanges uncomfortable looks and says nothing, things are not good. It’s not that people don’t have things to say; they’re just not saying them to you. Which could be because they know it will do no good, they know they’ll be punished, or they may be other reasons. But it’s a pretty clear indication that there are Problems.

        1. Windchime*

          At an old toxic job, we were a group of software developers and were asked to report our stress levels at each weekly team meeting. We would anonymously write down a number from 1 (no stress) to 5 (worst stress ever) on a slip of paper. If anyone wrote down anything higher than a three, the manager would make Confused Pikachu Face and murmmer “hmmmm” and “that doesn’t seem accurate”. We all quickly learned that the correct answer to “how stressed are you?” was 2 or 3, no matter how we really felt.

          1. Meep*

            This lady is a piece of work, but I recently sent an email to her saying that her subordinate knew what he was doing after she publicly said he didn’t and then tried to get him to admit it in an email chain that he didn’t. She cornered him and apparently told him that my email “couldn’t possibly be right” and that I was lying. All I said was that he knew what he was doing! It was a wild ride, but she is also the Queen of Projection.

  10. Squid*

    There are about a thousand red flags here, but one thing that jumps out at me is Kate discussing pay – it seems like she may be in a role that does NOT have protection for wage discussions under the NLRA, which leaves the company open to liability. This isn’t just an issue that Stacy and Josh need to know about, but also potentially HR and legal.

    1. Evonon*

      That’s what I was thinking! Because she’s also never disclosing her OWN information. It’s someone else’s salary, family emergency, PIP. I’m unfamiliar but could divulging these sensitive details be creating a hostile work environment/work place bullying?

    2. Observer*

      Not really. Sure it could be that she’s not in a role that protects her right to partake in “concerted action” including discussing her pay. But that doesn’t mean that anyone can claim that they have a legal right to have their pay kept secret.

      If this were her only “slip” I wouldn’t think too much about it. But it’s part of a pattern of over-sharing information that’s not really hers to share, without any reasonable justification. Even without the pattern, it wouldn’t be ok, of course. But not because of legal issues. It would be the issue of sharing other people’s information “just because.”

        1. Observer*

          No, there is no claim that the privacy of pay data is legally protected. So, there is nothing there to sue over.

      1. Evonon*

        Thanks for clarifying! I was thinking less about pay disclosure in general and more about if the disclosure of this and other private details could be construed as bullying or creating a hostile work environment down the line.

        1. Semi Bored IT Guy*

          The term “Hostile Work Environment” is a legal term, which has some specific requirements, generally related to discrimination against protected categories. I’m not a lawyer, but nothing I read in this letter seems to imply hostile work environment. Does it make for a poor work environment, yes, absolutely, but not hostile.

        2. Sal*

          Only if the bullying or hostility is based on the target being a member of a relevant class. “I created a hostile work environment for LW because I hate her” = not illegal; “I created a HWE for LW b/c I hate her [protected attribute]”= call a lawyer.

    3. Irish girl*

      You would be right, but that would still require the company to fire you for discussing pay and she would have no legal recourse under the NLRA. Doesnt seem like the company wants to fire her at all so its a moot point.

    4. Essess*

      The fact that she has access to wage data and is sharing OTHER’S information is not legal. You can share your own, but not other’s when you have confidential access according to what I found when I googled it.

      Specifically from that link – “there are a few important exceptions to the rule that you should know about. If you have access to company wage and payroll information, you cannot share employee pay information with others unless your employer or an investigative agency has directed you to share that information. Basically, you do not have a right to reveal someone else’s salary with others.”

  11. Aggretsuko*

    Having applied for a job where they HAD designated an internal candidate ahead of time, I actually wish I had gotten a heads up about it so I didn’t get my hopes up or put the work into applying, and then dealt with the embarrassment and shame once I found out I had had no hope in the first place.

    But in this case, kinda sounds like Kate was driving everyone else out of the job deliberately.

    1. NotRealAnonForThis*

      I don’t disagree.

      My only experience was on the flip side, but I was most certainly advised not to broadcast it myself (because I was not guaranteed the job), the job description as posted did mention that there was an internal candidate being considered (non academia job in higher ed, they had to be posted for legal reasons), I was absolutely NOT a shoe-in, and my supervisor did advise a phone screen that there was a strong internal candidate. That feels like how it should have been, not Kate chasing off applicants.

    2. All the words*

      I don’t believe you have anything to feel embarrassment or shame for. You acted in good faith but had incomplete information. I wish companies would stop this charade. It’s rotten for morale and so dishonest.

    3. Grumpy Elder Millennial*

      Sounds like that experience hit you pretty hard, Aggretsuko. And I feel your pain. In my organization, there are lots of job competitions where there is an incumbent candidate – someone who is currently in the job. The odds of being successful are… well, “not great” is putting it mildly. It’s frustrating. And they won’t tell you there’s an incumbent unless you ask. But not getting those jobs isn’t really about me; it’s about another person who is good at what they do and knows the job better than I could.

      So not getting that job doesn’t mean you did anything wrong. Someone else had a big advantage going in.

      1. Grumpy Elder Millennial*

        To be clear, I mean that the odds of being successful and beating out an incumbent are not great. It happens, but it’s pretty rare.

        1. Userper Cranberries*

          I’m pretty sure we had a letter from someone who’d applied for an internal promotion, not knowing someone else was supposed to be a shoe-in…and got it. And then needed to figure out how to manage the person who’d been all but promised the LW’s new position.

    4. Les Cargot*

      Aggretsuko, you have my empathy. I once applied for a job, took a day off from my hourly job to go to the interview, and at the end of the interview the hiring manager told me that someone else (someone related to someone in the organization) would be getting the job but they had to interview other candidates. So, to put on your little charade, you cost me a day’s pay?? Grrrrrr….

    5. HS Teacher*

      The same thing happened to me, and I’ve been job-hunting ever since. I spent a ton of time putting together a presentation for a position they had specifically created for someone. Furthermore, it was over my summer break, so I was really ticked off. I’d have preferred a heads-up, since everyone on the hiring committee knew it was just a formality.

  12. Red Reader the Adulting Fairy*

    I feel like Stacy and Josh kinda suck too, for knowing some of this and plowing ahead anyway. I am currently hiring a team lead, and if I knew that someone was pulling this crap, even if they had been my top choice initially, there is no behavior that you have listed here that would not immediately knock them completely out of the running, and with a stern discussion about acceptable workplace behavior.

    1. Antilles*

      I would have strongly considered pulling the offer as soon as she blabbed about the promotion and certainly now that we’ve seen her continue that behavior as team lead.
      Part of being a team lead/manager is being able to handle confidential information with discretion; she clearly can’t handle that.

    2. DrivingDitalini*

      I wonder if they didn’t act because it was true, though. If they already knew she was the one, then the other candidate dropping out might not have seemed consequential – they weren’t really in the running anyway.

      In light of the other things that we know, it’s obviously a really bad pattern. But if that was the only issue they knew of, and the information she shared was correct, I could understand them not taking much action. They could’ve handled it better, maybe, but I don’t think we know enough to write them off completely. If nothing else, they both were victims of her oversharing and might not be pleased! (And discussing someone’s PIP? No!)

      1. Red Reader the Adulting Fairy*

        “But it’s true” may be a valid excuse against a libel/slander claim, but it doesn’t actually make something okay to go shouting around the office. Also, I’m very fortunate in that the only internal applicant for my team lead position is the person I was hoping to promote from the get-go, but I’m required to post it (at least internally and for a minimum of 3 days) and interview qualified applicants, and the very idea of telling her that the job is hers and the process is a formality is therefore utterly absurd. And if I had been boneheaded enough to do that, AND she had been boneheaded enough to then openly tell multiple other people not to bother applying because she already had it in the bag, then that should be a good sign to me that she does not have the discretion I need in a team lead and desperately needs not to be moved into a leadership role without a lot more development.

    3. Lucious*

      >>I feel like Stacy and Josh kinda suck too

      I suspect Kate’s bragging about the position being promised to her in advance might be more than just noise. If thats so, it’s probable a VIP is running interference for Kate. Which means Stacy and Josh may have no practical say or control over her antics.

    4. anonymous73*

      If they are aware of all of these things then yes, they too are part of the problem. But this all sounds very recent, so something may be in the works. Some companies have hoops to jump through with disciplinary actions and it may be taking time to get it done. If nothing is changed once they band together and talk to Stacy & Josh, then everybody sucks.

  13. Evonon*

    I was on a PIP and was promoted after I worked on the improvement plan. Those records of that PIP are unreachable on our network and the only copy is physically kept in a locked drawer. Why? Because it’s no one’s business but the PIP-ee and the managers.

    I would feel a little embarrassed if my manager brought up my pip to my replacement years after I’ve moved on. If my manager let it slip to a coworker while I was a PIP-ee? I would have quit because I would feel to embarrassed to continue working, not to mention demoralized.

    OP you are not being petty or tattling. Kate is SUPER out of line

  14. Homebody*

    From the letter, there is a pretty substantial narrative thread of Kate being bad at boundaries. She doesn’t know when to be discreet about things and seems to be enjoying the “power” that comes from being told this sensitive information. I hope that this comes more from inexperience than anything, but the story of her pretending to have insider knowledge about the hiring process to leverage her own chances is…not a good look! If I were Stacy or Josh I would want to know ASAP, and would be pretty upset that Kate shared personal details about why I was on leave.

    Good luck OP. I hope you can use Alison’s advice to improve your situation at work.

  15. tessa*

    “When the internal candidate was asked why she was withdrawing her application, she told both Stacy and Josh about what Kate said.”

    And Kate still got hired? Huh?

    1. supertoasty*

      “Very no nonsense and a go-getter – perfect for management!” –this company, probably (unfortunately)

  16. Irish girl*

    Ugh… I hate how companies actually do create roles for specific people and then post them as a formality. I wish they wouldn’t as it can cause issues just like this.

      1. ThisIsTheHill*

        I worked for a publicly owned company. They were legally obligated to post all positions. Situations like that in the letter were usually handled by the “chosen” one being told it was coming – to get their resume uploaded – & then when the link was live, to get it submitted so that the post could be pulled. Most were only up for 1-2 days internally, never making it external.

        *This was true even for most promotions. You never were just given the bump, you had to apply & go through the motions. I think one of mine had like a 15 minute “interview” that was just BSing with my boss.

        1. Felis alwayshungryis*

          Yeah, when I worked for an org that had to do this we’d put something in the ad like ‘the incumbent has been invited to apply’ – code for ‘don’t bother’.

      2. SofiaDeo*

        Sometimes a company’s own policy is to post job openings. So the opening will get posted, even if it’s 99% certain they already know who they want in it.

      3. Irish girl*

        That depends on the state. If you read the new CO law, then yes they need to be posted for anyone to apply. Most states no. It is also good business practice to do it so that they can make sure you have the best candidate even if the internal person is strong, but that doesnt mean the hiring manager will actually look at other candidates. But as someone who applied for a job that was created for someone and the post was gone before I even had my interview, it su*ks. I learned after they offered her the position that it was the case and the whole thing was a sham.

      4. Aitch Arr*

        Companies doing business with the US federal government are subject to posting and notice requirements enforced by the OFCCP (Office of Federal Contract Compliance Programs).

        Among other things, jobs are required to be posted for enough time for qualified applicants to apply. In my experience, that has been taken to mean at least 5 days.

        Interestingly, the OFCCP rules specifically exempts the posting requirements for positions for which only internal candidates will be considered.

    1. anonymous73*

      It’s usually about optics. They want to make it seem “fair” that they posted the job and interviewed other candidates.

  17. Sunflower Sprouts*

    Hoooooo boy.

    This sounds almost exactly like a boss I had for a very short term job that I quit (one month) due to issues with her remaining professional.

    She was constantly talking to CUSTOMERS about my and the other employees personal issues (there were only four of us), other venders we worked with as well, and it was everything from pay to complaining about our food to complaining about my bathroom breaks. I freely admit that I have had bad stomach issues, but I take medication to help, I adjusted my diet, and did my best to leave no messes or take too long, and I also cleaned the single bathroom daily to help combat any other problems. She then tried to force me to leave the building to use a restroom elsewhere, but it had to be within five minutes, and yelled at me about this in front of the other employees. I quit that night and didn’t look back. But that’s not a good option here for you, and you do have management who can help retrain her/discipline her (my boss was the owner, HR, and Payroll all in one, so…yeah, nothing there to help)

    Please, please, PLEASE have your other coworkers join you in talking to Stacy and Josh about Kate; I tried to confront my boss about how unprofessional this all was, but had no real help from coworkers because they were afraid to speak up, which I don’t blame them for. Please don’t be afraid to push back on this because you worry that they’ll think you’re being petty; right now, she’s throwing down red rockets, not red flags, and it will fall back badly on your bosses/company sooner, rather than later. Good luck, LW, and I hope some change happens!

  18. OP*

    Hey guys OP here.

    Thank you so much for the advice. I was really worried about rocking the boat and not looking like a team player. I am in an highly competitive industry that was gutted by covid (shut downs of my industry made international headlines) and seriously thought I would never work in my industry again.

    I wrote in 2 weeks ago and things have been going ok, until yesterday. The coworker that withdrew her application, Sasha, put in her two weeks notice. Kate told the entire office. This morning Kate told me that another team we work closely with is leaving and told me how much he will me making at his new company (the industry is super small and she was able to figure it out). This paired with her having back end access to the one major job hiring site in our field which gives her access to everyone’s application history for any job they applied to , and her questioning me why I applied for a part time position with another company in November , prompted me to send Stacy and Josh a meeting request.
    Wish me luck

    1. NotRealAnonForThis*

      Wait, she has BACK END access to a major hiring site with un-re-dacted information about people who she manages applying for any and all jobs in your field?!? ::jaw goes thump::

      Absolute best wishes. This is bananacrackers, bat guano, full of bees, hellmouth, no boundaries insane.

        1. OP*

          It turns out it is a feature of the site so that people who posts roles or hiring managers can see if candidates have applied to other companies/ our company and what roles they applied to. I know this sounds insane but it makes sense in context, but I dont want to out my industry (It rhymes with JORTS HALL. A PART OF THE INDUSRTY JUST HAD A HUGE EVENT OVER THE WEEKEND COUGH COUGH)

          1. Lisanthus*

            Even if it’s a site feature for hiring managers/job posters, it sounds as if she’s misusing her back-end access to that feature in a way to which the site owner could take exception. As well as anyone listed on that job site.

            It’s not as if she posted a job ad to which you applied. From what you say, if that had happened she would then have a legitimate reason to look you up in the site. Instead, she’s independently looked up a co-worker she was selected over for a position — for no legitimate reason I can see — and talked behind a departing employee’s back about the starting salary at their new position using the job site as information. That sounds shady as all hell to me.

            A look at that website’s Terms of Service might be an idea in order to better understand your rights.

            I’m sorry she’s treating you this way.

          2. Velawciraptor*

            Oh, given that information, all of this sounds much less shocking. Appalling by rational human standards, but sounds par for the course per certain recent public allegations in the same general scope of things.

    2. Lance*

      This paired with her having back end access to the one major job hiring site in our field

      Oh dear lord, so the issues just get way worse. She needs to be shut down ASAP with this nosey, gossipy behavior.

    3. Red Reader the Adulting Fairy*

      what the fresh HAYELL. No, no nuh uh not okay no way. Kate needs to be out on her tailfeathers weeks ago.

    4. tinybutfierce*

      Hooooly cow, yeah, this is not someone who needs to be in charge of people in any capacity. Best of luck with Stacy and Josh!

    5. Lisanthus*

      She has back-end access to the single major job site in your field and is misusing it for her own purposes? Um…doesn’t that potentially expose the entire company to a rather significant degree of liability based on her behavior?

      I am not a lawyer and I could be wrong, of course.

      1. Grumpy Elder Millennial*

        And who’s to say that Kate wouldn’t keep snooping even after they no longer work together. This is a BIG problem and the people running the site need to get their sh*t together IMMEDIATELY.

    6. Grumpy Elder Millennial*

      What. The. F***?

      Like, everything up to this point was pretty bad. But then I got to the bit about her snooping in the job hiring site. Is this type of thing against the site’s terms of use agreement? Is there some mechanism to get the site owners to block her access? Because this is so beyond appropriate that appropriate looks like a tiny grain of sand in the distance.

      At this point, if Stacey and Josh don’t deal with this appropriately ASAP, I would make as quick an exit as possible.

      1. Not Tom, Just Petty*

        Yeah, I thought she was a run of the mill gossipy, look at me, can you believe she…type person. Not a premeditating, deep dive for private information loon.

        1. Observer*

          Given that she also told someone that they shouldn’t even apply for “her” position, I don’t find it surprising.

    7. Shiba Dad*

      and her questioning me why I applied for a part time position with another company in November


      I know it wasn’t, but I really want your answer to have been somewhere on the spectrum of “none of your business” to “f**k off”.

    8. Evonon*

      OP Kate is cleaning house of any threats. She told Sasha it was a done deal to take her out of the running and now she’s using your application for a PT job to torpedo your credibility/possibly your job security. Is there anyone above your two bosses you can go to? This has gotten way out of hand and if she has back end access to that site, isn’t it possible she can use it against anyone else who is planning to jump ship? Your bosses sound like they’re asleep at the wheel, family emergency or not.

      1. Grumpy Elder Millennial*

        I think you’ve hit the nail on the head. Kate is trying to assert dominance and mess with people who could show her up.

    9. Emily*

      What? Does Kate have access to the hiring site’s data through her job? In that case, her using it to look up the application histories of people who report to her is a massive confidentiality breach. It’s the like scandal of people working at rideshare companies using the data to keep tabs on others – a huge embarrassment for your work place, if not actually illegal. Surely this is a firing offense at most places, unless you think Stacy and Josh are actively protecting her? This might be more of an HR matter?

    10. Momma Bear*

      Wait, so she’s digging around in the backend for old info and quizzing people about it? Oh heck no. I hope that if Stacy and Josh don’t take you seriously HR will. What else is she abusing?

    11. Librarian of SHIELD*

      OP, this is so bad! Please know that we’re all rooting for you. Go into that meeting with Josh and Stacy knowing you have our support.

    12. JelloStapler*

      :shocked pikachu face: She went LOOKING for info from before her role and asked people about it?

    13. Dasein9*

      OP, please consider letting the administrators of the job hiring site know what you have learned.

      Kate’s behavior is a breach of professional ethics and I’m certain that those who administer the site would prefer not to be affiliated with her.

      1. SnappinTerrapin*

        They should want to plug that gap in their own information security.

        None of their hiring clients have a legitimate need to know about candidates applying to the other hiring clients.

        For that matter, I imagine any hiring client would be shocked to know that a competitor could access information about the applications they have received.

        I’ve had access to sites where people posted resumes for any employer to consider, and used that as a recruitment tool, but the applicants consented to that.

        This is a breach of confidentiality that the recruiting site owes to both the applicants and the hiring firms.

        1. Grumpy Elder Millennial*

          Yes. All of this. If the people running the site are even moderately reasonable, they’re going to be horrified about this.

  19. Observer*

    OP, I’m really wondering about management here. Because I see a bit of a red flag in that Kate got the promotion despite what she told this other co-worker. But also, it looks like there are TWO issues here.

    One – she’s apparently manipulative and dishonest. It doesn’t sound like it was actually true that she had the promotion locked up. And that’s why I’m seeing a red, or at least orange, flag here. The bosses knew this about her and yet they promoted her. OR she was telling the truth, in which case that’s a different problem with them.

    Two – she’s a terrible over-sharer of information that’s not hers to share. That’s where I would focus in talking to Josh and Stacy. And I’d honestly focus on 2 & 3 on the list, because unfortunately, I think those are the ones they are going to be concerned about.

  20. CountessofBeans*

    Does anyone else think maybe there’s a chance this is a “promote to fail” (and therefore terminate) situation?

      1. AnonEMoose*

        Not if you’re in “at will” state in the United States. If that’s the case, they can fire you for any reason or no reason (unless it’s discriminatory, but that’s hard to prove).

        1. NotRealAnonForThis*

          I’ve seen it done in private industry too. Reads as “promoted above their capability in order to limit the damage they may inflict or get them away from a department” typically.

          But the promotions I’ve seen like this generally limit the damage the person in question can do, because now they’re not handling llama trainers in the line of authority, or they’ve been promoted away from a position with auditing authority, or they’ve been promoted to teapot design esoterist and can no longer specify harmful materials be used in said teapots…

          1. teapot analytics manager*

            My personal observation is that if someone is a director with no direct reports, you’ve sidelined because you can’t be fired for political reasons but you can’t be trusted with actual work.

            If the title is ‘director of special projects’ it’s a certainty.

  21. Mr. Bob Dobalina*

    The PIP disclosure got my attention for sure. Yikes. In my industry, a PIP is used as a formality and prelude to firing someone for poor performance. Get put on a PIP in my industry, and you better start job searching, because you know what is very likely to happen next. Of course this may be specific to my industry, but a PIP is treated as highly confidential and only the manager knows about it. It would be a big privacy problem if an employee went around casually mentioning that someone else was put on a PIP – I might be inclined to go straight to HR about that.

  22. Lobsterman*

    LW1, I’m pretty sure Kate’s behavior is acceptable to your management. It’s fine to take a shot at pushing back, but at the end of the day, I think it’s you who is going to need to move on. It’s a good job market right now, so it’s worth at least putting some feelers out.

    1. Not Tom, Just Petty*

      They may like Kate’s ends, but they may not like her means. She’s absolutely artless in her collection of information and she freely disseminates like it’s a moral imperative.
      Henry Kissinger she ain’t.

  23. JSPA*

    Give Stacey your condolences. Remembering that she may have told Kate to let people know. Show concern for Josh’s family member. Same thing. Name Kate, but not in a tattling way.

    “Kate told us of your loss; my condolences. Please let me know if there’s anything we can do to be extra supportive in this difficult time.”

    If they are grateful, you have an indication that Kate is their trusted mouthpiece. Proceed with care.

    If they are nonplussed, then your (strategically later) complaint about having found out about Kate being all up in your business, will land on more solid ground.

    1. Librarian of SHIELD*

      There’s really no reason at all to be coy here. Kate revealed private info about OP’s salary and about another person’s PIP. Even if she did have permission to share what she did about Stacy and Josh, it doesn’t excuse all the other acts of indiscretion she’s made. All OP needs to do is be calm and straightforward.

  24. RB*

    Oh, yes, please say something because I think this is one of the main ways bad managers become bad at managing: because they started out with few skills in that area, or with a lot of bad habits, and nobody coached them or reined them in.

  25. OP*

    Hey guys I have an update.

    I just got out of the meeting with Stacy (Josh was unavailable) AND OH BOY ITS SO MUCH WORSE THEN PREVIOUSLY THOUGHT.

    I started the meeting off by saying I struggled with this for weeks and I was worried about the optics, but now im the only team member, (Sasha is leaving and the third team mate mentioned in the letter already left. I didnt know they were leaving when i wrote the letter) I felt like I had to speak up.

    I told her everything. About how Kate disclosed my salary, the job posting access, the discussion of PIPs, others personal information, and that a member of another team was leaving even though it is not public knowledge. Stacey was horrified and assured me that she was going to talk to Kate since this was not ok.

    Because I am now doing the job of 4 people and I’m needed, I felt comfortable to ask why Kate was given this job when Sasha told them early on in the process that Kate bullied her into withdrawing, and I told them Kate was doing the same to me (i didn’t mention that in my original letter cause I was afraid the comments were going to call me petty. At the time Stacy promised that it was not Kate’s position and that the best candidate would be offered the role ). Stacy apologized to me and told me that she and Josh thought that Kate was coachable, but this is very disturbing behavior that will be addressed. I was also told that it came very close to me getting the job, just some people very high in the management chain (like my 4x great grand bosses) thought that the optics wouldn’t look great if the “new kid on the block” was promoted over the team veteran.

    We also worked out that Kate will not be in my chain of command, and that my personal info will not be discussed in places were Kate has access. I was also told to tell Stacy immediately if Kate tells me anything I shouldn’t know, and I have a feeling I will be doing that soon.

    1. Two Dog Night*

      So… basically, Kate has no team to lead? Serves her right.

      Good for you for talking to Stacy. I’m glad she took you seriously, and I hope something happens very, very soon. You aren’t being petty in the least–Kate is a dumpster fire.

      1. OP*

        She will get to assign me to projects, and have a little control of my day to day tasks, but all performance reviews will be sealed. Thats the piece I’m happy about. I can smile and nod and let her think she has control, but she will have zero say on reviews and skills i need to work on

        1. animaniactoo*

          Excellent. That sounds like an outcome that is manageable… for at least awhile.

          Continued mojo that she is not TOO much a pain in the rear as things move forward for you/your team/your company.

        2. Paris Geller*

          This sounds like a good outcome for you OP, but it makes me roll my eyes at the managers above you. Basically Kate strong-armed her way in to the position, but since she can’t actually do it they’re just giving her the title as a figurehead?

          1. Tau*

            It sounds like this might be “stop the immediate bleeding” measure instead of the totality of what’s planned. Further investigation into Kate’s behaviour, verifying what OP said, speaking to Kate, potentially putting a PIP into place or moving to demotion or termination would all still take time during which OP is stuck working under this boss. Moving her out of Kate’s reporting line is something Stacey could do immediately to mitigate the damage while the other stuff is ongoing.

            I mean, it’s not impossible that Stacey and Josh plan to stick their heads in the sand, but I wouldn’t assume it just based on what OP’s written. In contrary, I think I’d be cautiously optimistic about the fact that Stacey didn’t go “OK, thanks for telling me, I’ll investigate this and get back to you eventually” but took what immediate steps she could.

            1. Lab Boss*

              My immediate thought as well. Sometimes the commenters here can lean towards the attitude that “the only acceptable outcome is an immediate perfect fix” but I’ve been in a lot of situations where it’s more like “create a temporary better-than-nothing fix that everyone can deal with for 6 months while we get our ducks in a row, THEN drop the big hammer.”

              OP, if you have any kind of regular check-ins with Stacey, you should definitely be including discussions of how this arrangement is going. Let her know if it ends up being long-term workable, or if it’s more of a “good enough for now.” Try to have specific examples for her of what works and what doesn’t work. It sounds like she was pretty transparent with you about the process so far, so help by giving her what she might need to support a push for bigger changes down the road.

        3. JSPA*

          prediction: you will be doing Kate’s job, while she gets the pay.

          On the one hand, once you’ve been there a while, you benefit from “seniority thinking” (if that’s all that’s in play). To be fair, it’s true that experience CAN indeed bring wisdom and relevant skills, and also true that companies sometimes railroad people out for becoming too wise, or too expensive. (There’s a reason that unions support seniority-based processes.)

          On the other hand, blind application of seniority–especially when Kate’s seniority only trumped yours by 20 months, which means you are BOTH (frankly) newbies–may mean that while you may become safe there, you’ll be working with a mixed bag of people whose share the qualification, “willing to put up with BS.”

          So, eh, think in terms of strategic skills for your resumé.

    2. Wants Green Things*

      Oh man, OP, good luck with this! In addition to telling Stacy immediately, make sure to document, document, document. If you remember dates/times from earlier stuff, write it down. This has potential to get really ugly, and you want to CYA.

    3. Deanna Troi*

      Thank you for the update!! Please update us again on Friday. Fingers and toes crossed that you will come back and tell us she was fired.

    4. Observer*

      That’s a mixed bag, I would say.

      I’m side eyeing management here – they were so worried about “optics” that they overlooked a major red flag. You want to coach her? Do that BEFORE you promote her.

      Please document your head off, keep your bosses in the loop about Kate’s behavior, and start looking for a new job. Because Kate is not the only problem here and you want to be in a better position to move on if things get to be too much.

      I AM glad that you spoke up and that your manager seems to be taking you seriously, though.

      1. Aggretsuko*

        If the word “coaching” comes up, you should not promote the person. Reminds me of the issues that were had with someone in our office.

        1. Candi*

          The only context coaching should be used in with a promotion is “coached on the duties of their new role.”

      2. Grumpy Elder Millennial*

        Or if you do promote her, start serious coaching right away and keep a very close eye on her.

    5. Sean*

      What with two departures already, and Kate’s violation of employee privacy both above and below her in the hierarchy, I wonder how proud the grand-bosses are of the optics now? Should’ve gone to Specsavers.

      I wouldn’t worry about rocking the boat: Kate has already attached that boat to a bucking bronco.

  26. ExAcademic*

    Regarding ‘there’s no “you can never raise concerns about the person who got the job you applied for” rule.’ I think there is this unwritten rule in higher education!

  27. LMB*

    I’d lead with disclosure of the other teammate’s PIP. This to me seems like the most clear cut issue and one that would be most concerning to any employee. Then back it up with the salary disclosure stuff and blabbing about getting the job before she was supposed to. Telling everyone about why the managers were out is bad but could have been a lapse in social judgement or maybe she thought she was doing the right thing. I think this last one is more optional to report.

  28. csens*

    This whole environment sounds toxic and combative. Like a bunch of people just looking to undermine each other instead of working together. I am not saying that what the OP said isn’t true, but two weeks is not much. If I had to guess, this sounds like a work environment with people in their late teens and early twenties.

    “Stacey and my dotted line manager Josh have given me other responsibilities and projects to really help make me visible in the department so I will be promoted in a few months.” – Shouldn’t this be something more like ” I will be considered for promotion if I am the best candidate”? Been in a job for four months and expecting a promotion?? For many companies you would be just out of your probationary term where they even decided if they want to keep you.

    Kate may be a garbage team lead, but OP sounds like someone that just doesn’t like Kate and will look for anything to complain about. Also, there is a difference between legally protected information and information that someone just might not want known. If Kate spread around protected medical information then that could be a legal problem for the company. If Kate said that someone was one a PIP or something about someone’s salary, that does not seem like legally protected information (not a lawyer, but I have not heard of something like that being legally confidential).

    Usually I am very pro-worker/employee vs management, but something about this post just struck me as wrong.

    1. Observer*

      If Kate said that someone was one a PIP or something about someone’s salary, that does not seem like legally protected information

      So? Good managers don’t worry just about what is legally protected.

      Now, it’s possible that the OP just doesn’t like Kate. But when 2 out of three people leave a team, the lead is known to have lied, AND that person is also discussing all sorts of private stuff that they are not supposed to be talking about, legally protected or not, that’s perfectly legitimate to bring up to management.

  29. Waving not Drowning*

    I’ve worked under a Kate before – complete with giving details of people on PIP’s, trash talking team members to other team members etc etc. I was NOT a favourite, and she attempted to ping me for not meeting KPI’s, when in actual fact I was exceeding them – and luckily I had the evidence to back me up, otherwise I would have ended up on a PIP. She tried to get me to speak badly about my team mates, and from comments people have made, I know that she spoke badly about me to others. Gave me a breakdown. A Team of 8 was down to only 1 original team member after her 18 month reign of terror (and it wasn’t me – I’d jumped ship to another department!). Out of the 5 replacement staff, only one of those remained. In the 2 years since she left – staff numbers have stabilised, and no staff leaving.

    However…… there was a FLOOD of resignations from the team that she was promoted to – and, hearing the same stories from them too. These are not dead wood employees, these were competent professional staff that couldn’t put up with the bullshit from above, and were quite vocal about it on their way out the door. The mass resignations (and this was before “the great resignation”) was noticed by above, and a full on enquiry was made from above, with staff being interviewed. Coincidently, she’s been shunted sideways, and now supervises a team of 2 people.

    In my case, the other team members were not willing to speak up to HR. And, while I’m glad that I did, and attempted to put it on record, including cc’ing in the managers manager to the worst of it all, it took an almighty toll to the point I needed to leave my job that I loved (HR was useless – but not just with me – she told a manager that she wouldn’t action the bullying complaint she submitted – complete with email evidence – as the (female) manager needed to turn the other cheek to the (male) staff members behaviour. She went over her head to the Central HR department – and he was outta there!)

    I’m really hoping for a positive outcome for you, this kind of behaviour is toxic and is so damaging to the team and the organisation.

    1. Lady_Lessa*

      WOW, and thank you for sharing.

      Almost sounds like a similar boss I had, before they let me go. (They were good, and got their ducks in a row in the process). She tried to get me to prove that my technician was getting too many lates/absences. But by that time, I was on to her and refused.

      It was apparently a pattern with her as well. She had come from a company we acquired, was very good at formulating my weakest area, but another person who also came said “If I had known that she was coming, I wouldn’t” And he was a good hard and knowledgeable worker

      1. Waving not Drowning*

        Funnily enough, this manager accused the team of being toxic….. however, it was her that had created the toxic atmosphere in the first place! She’d employed her best friend – and even she couldn’t cope with working with her! She confided in me that she felt suicidal, because she knew things had been agreed on, yet TM (Toxic Manager) denied conversations had taken place, and was continually changing what needed to be done. She was wondering if she was doing the right thing by resigning, and by losing a friend. At that point, I’d already had a breakdown due to similar behaviour (but not feeling suicidal thank goodness!). She left, and I followed up with her, and she’s doing a lot better now!

        It was a hell of a ride! 3 staff seeing psycologists, another one feeling suicidal, and thats just the ones I know about!

        On the grapevine, TM had a reputation as a high flyer, destined to move to one of the high power roles. Had that reputation…. not any more. She’s not spent longer than 18 months in a role since she started, she can’t show any initiatives that she rolled out and saw through to completion. She’s been shunted into a role with no visibility/glory (sort of overseeing car park/parking – essential, but nothing to attract the attention of higher up)

  30. Erica*

    When I had my first leadership role, I was SO careful about what I said to people on the team. And believe me… some of them tried to get me to gossip with them. Even if they said something about a colleague that may have been true – maybe they correctly guessed that Mary is pregnant which is why she has missed so much work lately, maybe Steve is having surgery – I never warranted it with a response, ever. The fact that Kate is going around talking about privileged and private information is really insane to me

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