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Discussion Starter #1
Please allow me a few sentences to vent.

I am once again, experiencing issues with people in the work world. This is my 5th company in the last 10 years where it appears I can't go through life without pissing someone off, or giving them the idea that "hey, that chick looks like she needs to be targeted. Aim rifles!" My supervisor and I are currently in the aftermath of butting heads, and after documenting incidents, making complaints, and requesting assistance it seems for the time being it is a standstill. We are relatively new team members, so this could be growing pains and differences in style since I did have a supervisor before him. But the point is, I want this to STOP. A similar issue happened at job B, where the department manager decided I was "too cheerful," and therefore too distracting so she switched my seating arrangement and team. Then she assigned more work to me, while others were exempt. At job C, my supervisor found every reason to complain to her manager about me and write me up for anything. She'd make up anything, her manager would sign off on it, and there it would go. I am done with this. I need to figure out how to navigate through office politics, difficult people, difficult circumstances, etc. without pissing anyone off.

Of course, I am the common thread here. I've been to counseling, sought the help of career professionals, etc. All told me I am who I am, and it sounds like I am a hard-worker, ethical, and overall good employee. Here's the kicker: those things are all true!

At my current job, my supervisor gave me a glowing review and I received a raise. My current supervisor has praised my ability to understand complex concepts. At job B, I found out I was regarded as one of the few employees who "cared," and a staff lead revealed to me the extra work was assigned only to test me to see if I'd do it:frustrating: Of course I'd do it, it was work! Somehow my willingness to do it earned me accolades. At job C, that very same supervisor who'd write me up every week gave me a positive review, praised me on my working relationships with clients, AND then after I left told other staff there how much she missed me! One of my friends who was still there are the time thought she was kidding and she was not. Seriously-- WTF??

If my supervisors are all willing to give me positive praise and feedback, all while torturing me, I have to conclude I don't know office politics. I need serious help with it. Someone PLEASE help me. I can't keep leaving a job every year because of this. A stupid, immature, and unprofessional supervisor can't be the thing determining the course of my future. I need some Office Politics 101.
 

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Some people can be hard to work with so sometimes you might just have a bad luck. Perhaps since you are ISTJ, you might be misunderstood sometimes? The world often values extraverted people so introverts can sometimes appear snob or unfriendly which can lead to certain misunderstandings. Being an introvert myself, I have to remember that I have people around me (specially coz I'm a programmer), and if I get too "apathetic" I might be perceived as distant/weird. Perhaps you can try to pay attention to the general moods of a workplace and adapt to it, thought IMO, sometimes certain workplaces has such ingrained culture that is incompatible with us that we simply don't fit in, and there is nothing wrong about it nor we should try hard to blend in.

It's not easy to find a good workplace, and there are just so many places where negativity is strong even if it is subtle.

You can also analyze the feedback you get from others, analyze why they might behave in certain ways, if it has to do with you or it's really nothing personal and they are just that way. It takes a good self awareness and also understanding others.
 

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Discussion Starter #3
Oh, I'm also a programmer :)

I don't know what the issue is. My current supervisor spends most of his time giving me "help" I didn't ask for, and then berates me loudly like I'm an incompetent idiot. Even though I'll have put forth a numerous amount of independent effort and work, but it's hardly to his liking. Even the way I arrange my desk bothers him:dry:

What is funnier is a lot of people have told me I'm quite outgoing for being an introvert. Which I am. Outside of work, I'm involved in social groups and organizations. It's not like I completely hate people. I also get along with the people outside of work very well, and I can't understand why at the workplace I continue experiencing this issues.

You are right-- it is NOT easy to find a good workplace. I have half a mind to just give up because no amount of interview questions can truly tell me what an employer is like. I didn't start to find out what things were actually like at my current job until 4-5 months in, and I had asked very good interview questions. Sometimes I think, why the fuck should I care about finding a good employer because it seems like they all suck anyway but I know it's self-futility.
 

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Oh, I'm also a programmer :)

I don't know what the issue is. My current supervisor spends most of his time giving me "help" I didn't ask for, and then berates me loudly like I'm an incompetent idiot. Even though I'll have put forth a numerous amount of independent effort and work, but it's hardly to his liking. Even the way I arrange my desk bothers him:dry:

What is funnier is a lot of people have told me I'm quite outgoing for being an introvert. Which I am. Outside of work, I'm involved in social groups and organizations. It's not like I completely hate people. I also get along with the people outside of work very well, and I can't understand why at the workplace I continue experiencing this issues.

You are right-- it is NOT easy to find a good workplace. I have half a mind to just give up because no amount of interview questions can truly tell me what an employer is like. I didn't start to find out what things were actually like at my current job until 4-5 months in, and I had asked very good interview questions. Sometimes I think, why the fuck should I care about finding a good employer because it seems like they all suck anyway but I know it's self-futility.
Your supervisor seems like a nightmare that does micromanagement of people. This kind of people wants others to work in the same ways they envision, and when they screw up your self management and tasks they think you are not doing the job.

Unfortunately the interviews can't give us an idea of how it would be, and then it would also depend on the team of different projects you might join so we can't really know how the environment can be. One way to know would be if you know a former coworker or a friend that works there, or perhaps there is some forum where people shared their experience (in my country there's a forum where people exchanged impressions of their IT jobs and companies), however in most of the times it's hit or miss. :( Before joining a company I try to ask how the project is and what technologies they use to see if the project itself interests me, then hope the team will be fine. If a team is not good, I might ask to change projects or I change companies myself. Since there is more demand (job positions) than supplies where I live, I have freedom of choice. I feel that when negativity is too ingrained in a team or company, not much can be done. >_<
 

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Discussion Starter #5
I read glassdoor to get an idea of what it can be like, but experiences are different for every person. Sometimes I wonder if I have a bad personality that doesn't mesh well with others:unsure:
 

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FWIW, I have never worked in a workplace without some major issues. I don't think anyone has. I think the most you can do is to find a relatively good one, and then try to find inherent joy in your tasks while beating against the current of the natural inclination for more work to be piled on. It's sad but true that everyone will basically always be fighting the tide in a way. If you are a good worker, people will naturally want to give you more work. If you are not a good worker, you will be criticized. You may be criticized regardless because everyone does not see eye to eye with you. I'm sorry this isn't more comforting. I think the only answer is finding inherent joy in your work and finding a job in which the balance is struck where the joy of the position is worth the struggle. If you have heard of the notion of "flow"... the more flow you can attain in your work, the more you can lose yourself in the zen of your task and forget the minor struggles, the better.

PS - if you happen to be an e6 like me, reading about how 6s react to authority could be really helpful in understanding why workplace organizational hierarchy seems to give you a lot of trouble. We have sort of a double bind when it comes to being loyal hard workers but struggling to accept the instituted hierarchies and seemingly illogical, unjust office politics.
 

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your thread is very interesting to me because I have had similar issues in a completely different field and I am considering doing programming haha. I am in my mid 20s and not spent 1 minute playing office politics and it has destroyed any chance of me getting anywhere, I don't know if you are the same but in my experience the actual job is no where near as important as the way you sell it and the quiet backstabbing and negotiating you do.
 

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Must be something about computers. Every time (except once) I've had an overseer with computers, be it boss or teacher, I wound up either butting heads with them, or fighting over something. VPs and company presidents were nice and cool people to be around, the managers just tend to be jerks. I've found a lot of people in that field have zero people skills, but are awesome with computers. Never had that problem when I worked at the museum, airport, or warehouse though.

Might not be what you wanted to hear, but I'd take a long serious look at the field. Have you tried any other fields before?

I feel kind of bad hammering the computer field, there were some genuinely awesome people there, but it is pretty crap-a-holic overall from what I've experienced. FWIW, I've heard of students getting harassed by programming professors.
 

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Discussion Starter #9
Must be something about computers. Every time (except once) I've had an overseer with computers, be it boss or teacher, I wound up either butting heads with them, or fighting over something. VPs and company presidents were nice and cool people to be around, the managers just tend to be jerks. I've found a lot of people in that field have zero people skills, but are awesome with computers. Never had that problem when I worked at the museum, airport, or warehouse though.

Might not be what you wanted to hear, but I'd take a long serious look at the field. Have you tried any other fields before?

I feel kind of bad hammering the computer field, there were some genuinely awesome people there, but it is pretty crap-a-holic overall from what I've experienced. FWIW, I've heard of students getting harassed by programming professors.
I worked in a previous field and switched fields. My programming job is my new field. My previous field was a heavy-people field. I think it's my personality. I can switch around and around and keep going back to school and changing it up, but I think I'll always have these problems until I figure out a way to fix me:frustrating: That's my only conclusion.
 

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I worked in a previous field and switched fields. My programming job is my new field. My previous field was a heavy-people field. I think it's my personality. I can switch around and around and keep going back to school and changing it up, but I think I'll always have these problems until I figure out a way to fix me:frustrating: That's my only conclusion.
your not the only one haha, I am exactly the same, One thing I have personally noticed is most people are better off on the heavy side at work, being more of an asshole then a calm easy going person, I guess it involves a bit of acting.
 

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I worked in a previous field and switched fields. My programming job is my new field. My previous field was a heavy-people field. I think it's my personality. I can switch around and around and keep going back to school and changing it up, but I think I'll always have these problems until I figure out a way to fix me:frustrating: That's my only conclusion.
Now I'm kind of curious. The only people that really put my blood pressure through the roof are uber-professional business types and career-first types. Unless you're actively aggressive towards others, there's not much to change. There are people in the office world that you just won't please, so rather ignore them and do your best for your customers or team. If your work is top-notch, results will speak for themselves and people above your managers will take notice (that's what happened to me). In certain situations, teams need to work together to ensure safety or goal completion, but apparently the "old" offices don't give a rat's ass about employees. Perhaps you might get an offer at a younger company, or at least somewhere with a more social open-office policy and that will prove to be the environment you fit into.

There is a new thinking brought forward by younger generations that attempts to focus on employees and social responsibility above all else (I despise the profit above all else mentality with every ounce of my being). Personally, I try to make friends in high places, so that if a manager does pull some bovine excrement, I can call out my manager and have his bosses back me up when a rule is violated or someone is being treated unfairly.
 

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Now I'm kind of curious. The only people that really put my blood pressure through the roof are uber-professional business types and career-first types. Unless you're actively aggressive towards others, there's not much to change. There are people in the office world that you just won't please, so rather ignore them and do your best for your customers or team. If your work is top-notch, results will speak for themselves and people above your managers will take notice (that's what happened to me). In certain situations, teams need to work together to ensure safety or goal completion, but apparently the "old" offices don't give a rat's ass about employees. Perhaps you might get an offer at a younger company, or at least somewhere with a more social open-office policy and that will prove to be the environment you fit into.

There is a new thinking brought forward by younger generations that attempts to focus on employees and social responsibility above all else (I despise the profit above all else mentality with every ounce of my being). Personally, I try to make friends in high places, so that if a manager does pull some bovine excrement, I can call out my manager and have his bosses back me up when a rule is violated or someone is being treated unfairly.
I'm not a career-first type. I have hobbies, a family, intellectual interests, and volunteer outside of work. At the end of the day, I leave when everyone else does (and we all start packing up ahead of time). I'm not aggressive by any means. I respect authority and hierarchy-- I'm an ISTJ. What I don't understand is why these things keep happening. It's costing me my health, my career prospects, and my sanity. It would be one thing if it was an idiot coworker, but the people raging hell are my direct supervisors. No one likes to be micromanaged, treated like an idiot, or greeted with sexist remarks (experienced that recently) and when they come from your direct supervisor, doing your best doesn't cut it. It just makes your life miserable :(
 

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I'm not a career-first type. I have hobbies, a family, intellectual interests, and volunteer outside of work. At the end of the day, I leave when everyone else does (and we all start packing up ahead of time). I'm not aggressive by any means. I respect authority and hierarchy-- I'm an ISTJ. What I don't understand is why these things keep happening. It's costing me my health, my career prospects, and my sanity. It would be one thing if it was an idiot coworker, but the people raging hell are my direct supervisors. No one likes to be micromanaged, treated like an idiot, or greeted with sexist remarks (experienced that recently) and when they come from your direct supervisor, doing your best doesn't cut it. It just makes your life miserable :(
Sorry, wasn't talking about you when I mentioned career-first types. Those managers are the ones who I find to always be jerks.

Is there any way you can avoid contact with the bosses? Perhaps keeping to yourself might help things a bit. There's always HR. They might be able to transfer you into a different department or team.
 

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As money continues to erode whatever basic human/workers rights we have, the common man/woman will continue to become more and more treacherous and morally bankrupt in the workplace, unfortunately. 98% of people in a position of authority are there for two reasons, either they have self-centered or evil pursuits, or they are useful to further those pursuits of those above them. So you have two choices, either become a wolf/pig and have little to no conscience in the workplace, or play roulette and hope you arent a great worker who threatens insecure people or exacerbates some kind of bigotry etc.
 
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