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What's the right way to axe a coworker?

June 16, 2015

I have a great job, in a new location. Nobody except upper management has been here more than 3 months. I've been here 3 weeks. A handful of others started with me.

There's a guy in the cube next to me who angers me. He's on the phone 6/8 hours per day. Nothing wrong with that. He's loud. VERY loud. Okay, he's got pipes. I can deal. But the things he says to people, even when they're not directed at me, piss me off. He cuts people off, calls them "stupid fucking idiots", heavy use of sarcasm and condescension.

His teammate is a soft spoken Asian girl. She came to his cube and asked if he has some report. "Janus" he says loudly and in the most condescending voice I've ever heard, "They're right here on my desk, Janus. DOES IT LOOK LIKE I FUCKING HAVE THEM JANUS?!".

Poor girl was on the verge of tears. My work buddy locked eyes and telepathically asked each other what the fuck is wrong with this guy.

I can't do my work because this guy is such an asshole. What's the proper route? I'm not the only one that wants him gone, but I may be the only one willing to take action.

Should I contact HR? Gather audio or text records of exact things he's said first? Confront him directly, and tell him to stop being a fuckface, in a more professional manner, of course?

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Post Information
Title What's the right way to axe a coworker?
Author Sketti-Os
Upvotes 3
Comments 13
Date June 16, 2015 2:04 PM UTC (7 years ago)
Subreddit /r/askTRP
Archive Link https://theredarchive.com/r/askTRP/whats-the-right-way-to-axe-a-coworker.150133
Original Link https://old.reddit.com/r/asktrp/comments/3a1fo7/whats_the_right_way_to_axe_a_coworker/

[–][deleted] 2 points3 points  (0 children) | Copy Link

You aren't his boss, get over it.

[–]RPthrowaway1230 points1 point  (6 children) | Copy Link

The dude sounds like he's being an asshole. I would discuss this with him privately first, and let him know that what he's doing is unacceptable if he's going to work underneath you. Make sure you let him know exactly what he is doing that puts his job in jeopardy. If he keeps it up or it happens again, fire him privately. He will know exactly what he did that got him fired.

Workplace situations can be very weird. In my opinion go about everything privately so that he doesn't get embarrassed and have another freakout in front of everyone. There's no reason to drag him through the mud - just confront him directly. I would read the chapter about delivering criticism in "How to Win Friends and Influence People". In the workplace, you'll want to assert your control of the situation as his boss while not lowering yourself to his level of dickishness.

[–]Sketti-Os[S] 0 points1 point  (5 children) | Copy Link

Well he doesn't work beneath me. He's on the same level, just different departments. I'm in DevOps Engineering, he's in... I want to say marketing.

[–]RPthrowaway1232 points3 points  (4 children) | Copy Link

If you're on the same level then there isn't anything you can do. It's not your job to protect this other employee, even if the guy is an asshole...don't stick your neck out. You are not her white knight.

[–]Sketti-Os[S] 1 point2 points  (3 children) | Copy Link

Not doing it for her. Hearing this guy speak makes me angry.

Many of my coworkers go out for drinks after work, and everyone feels the same way about this guy. It's not just me.

[–]RPthrowaway1230 points1 point  (2 children) | Copy Link

Perhaps, but if everyone already thinks he's an asshole what's the point? Don't be the one left holding the bag when he gets fired because you reported him for something. He might make your blood boil, but believe me running and crying to HR about it is a bad idea. Just let it go.

[–]Sketti-Os[S] 0 points1 point  (1 child) | Copy Link

The point, in my mind, is that I can't get my work done next to this asshole. It's taking a lot out of my tank to remain professional and stay shut up about it.

Tolerating a shitty work environment sounds pretty bluepill to me.

"Oh well, this guys going to be a jerk. Guess there's nothing I can do about it! I hope he doesn't talk to me!"

[–]RPthrowaway1230 points1 point  (0 children) | Copy Link

Or, you could look at it as stoically dealing with an uncomfortable situation until it subsides. This is just my advice dude, ultimately you will do whatever you want.

[–][deleted] 0 points1 point  (0 children) | Copy Link

The man sounds like he is counter productive. And not just him personally, but for all walks of life in and near his path.

I'd get a signed letter by everyone in the immediate area. 80%+ should do it. Saying that he is extremely rude, disruptive and most importantly a distraction causing sever drops in performance for everyone around him. He is the metaphorical thorn in the companies side and they would be better without him.

The more women on the petition the better. (they're useful occasionally) Then hand it to HR in person, during a scheduled private session.

Any examples you can use would help, but if that many people are truly bugged by him, you won't really need them. The example like you just said though of him cussing at a "soft spoken little Asian woman" should help. Recordings are probably the best path, as well as written testaments. Make sure to explain to them that everything with the HR person will be kept private, so they will be more willing.

Fuck whatever the RP path might be. Don't put up with that bullshit for a moment longer.

[–]herpes_delivery_man 1 points1 points [recovered] | Copy Link

You don't have to do anything. Sociopaths like that will eventually get fired soon.

Don't try to get involved unless he actually does something directly to you. Otherwise it's none of your business right now. Who knows what this guy will do when you confront or report him? There's too many risks. Stay out of drama, especially since this is a new job.

[–]JanLul0 points1 point  (0 children) | Copy Link

Pretty much this. You don't want to put yourself in a weak position. I'd think if he's going to do anything at all, going the indirect path is probably the best idea.

[–]RunawayGrain0 points1 point  (0 children) | Copy Link

Marketing people are generally like that, and he will either move up, in which case starting shit with him will be bad for you, or he will get himself eliminated, which makes your issue a moot point.

There's a lot of shit here about getting the guy fired. Most of it is BS. Don't start politics at the office, and don't get involved with office politics. Instead, just ask to move your office / cubicle. Make up a plausible reason to move.

[–]RPmatrix-2 points-1 points  (0 children) | Copy Link

wrong sub for that question

You can kill a man, but you can't kill an idea.

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