Many jobs are stressful enough, but having a difficult relationship with your manager or a colleague can make it even more so. It can be hard to know how best to handle such a situation.
There can be a number of reasons why a relationship with a manager might break down. Perhaps your manager unreasonably questions your performance or places too much pressure on you? Sometimes it’s a simply clash of personalities.
What can you do?
It’s usually preferable to see if you can resolve things informally. If you feel able to, speak directly to your manager in the first instance and explain how you are feeling. It may clear the air between you and ‘re-set’ your working relationship.
In many cases though, an informal approach is simply not possible. If an informal approach has failed, or you cannot make an informal approach, you can lodge a grievance to someone more senior to your manager or to your HR department if you have one.
Your employer should have a policy that sets out the procedure for employees wishing to raise a grievance. Your employer is obliged to hear your grievance and will set up a meeting with you for this purpose. Following that meeting your employer may investigate your grievance further and speak to the person you have complained about. Your employer should notify you of the outcome of your grievance. You have the right to appeal if you are not satisfied with the outcome.
After the grievance process has concluded
Hopefully, your situation will improve after you have lodged your grievance. If it does not and you feel that your position has become untenable, you may consider resigning and claiming constructive dismissal. This is not a decision that should be taken lightly and should be a last resort. You should take legal advice before resigning to ensure that you have grounds to bring a claim and understand the implications of doing so.
A negotiated settlement?
If you and your employer cannot see any future in the working relationship you might agree to terminate your employment under a settlement agreement. Usually this would see you leaving with a lump sum payment and a reference.
Again, it is advisable to take legal advice before you broach this with your employer. The timing of an approach could be crucial. If your employer is not interested in a negotiated exit, it may harm your ongoing working relationship.
How can Lincs Law help?
For advice about your individual situation please contact us on 01522 440512 or visit our website at www.lincslaw.co.uk.
Specialist Employment Solicitor
Lincs Law Employment Solicitors