Ditched and Lied to
Out of town gatherings of fellow co-workers are important and unique opportunities to build relationships and trust to improve the working environment back home. Spending time together outside the office can help employees learn to trust one another and combat the Culture of Fear the Higher Learning Commission described when they put the college on probation.
To keep from being excluded from team gatherings this year, with the help of a Director in his department, Bob organized a team dinner at an out of town conference. After the dinner Bob asked the group if anyone wants to get together over drinks tonight. He wants to try to improve his relationship with the Director-who-hates-him and their co-workers in a safe group setting.
A Director, who was texting the Director-who-hates-him who was standing only five feet away from them, looked uncomfortable, stared at his phone and said, "Uuuuh. No. I think everyone's tired and ready to call it a night." The Director-who-hates-Bob nodded in approval and walked away. “Everyone’s going to back to their hotels,” the Director said while waiting for Bob to leave.
After an uncomfortable pause, Bob lets him off the hook and says, "OK then. Good night everyone." Bob and a member of Bob's team began walking back to their hotel suspecting the Director, the Director-who-hates-him, and the others weren't doing the same despite what they said to him.
The next morning Bob says good morning to the Director from his department who was at the dinner the night before and the Director says, "Wow, what an evening. You should have come with us after dinner, Bob. We found a great bar and were out past midnight having a really fun time together."
Suspicions confirmed. Bob and his teammate were ditched by their District Office colleagues and a clueless Director in his own department. (see mobbing)
When a Director of the College feels like he has to lie about his behavior to a co-worker, perhaps it's time for him to think about changing his behavior instead.
"The way female bullying is done often differs from male bullying. ...it's often more common for female bullies to form groups to deliberately exclude certain people, to spread malicious gossip about others, ... or to constantly find fault with someone else."
The colleges code of conduct and standards for employees:
"...College employees will show mutual respect for others, basic courtesy, reciprocity (treating others as we wish to be treated), and behaviors that create a positive environment in which to learn and to work."
Is trust an important factor in working effectively with people?