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Being ostracized at work

post #1 of 102
Thread Starter 
Anyone ever been ostracized at work by your own group? How do you deal with it? I've been working at my company for about a year now and I'm still left out of my own department. When we do go to company lunches, they go into their cliques and just ignore me. I try to chitchat with them but they rarely pick up their end of conversation and I end up doing all the talking ... but when another member of the group talks with them they just keep going. Lately they've been making jokes at my expense, but when I make jokes they're met with silence. I get along well with people in other departments ... for some reason it's just my group. I don't mean to brag, but I'm thinking it might be because I'm slightly better qualified, I do a more competent job, and my coworkers are just insecure? My coworkers are the type to just come in, do their work, and leave. On the other hand, I've always been a bit of an overachiever, going the extra mile every now and then, and my superiors have noticed that. I'm also the newest member in the group. Anyone been ostracized at work because they're good at what they do? I've heard it happen before. What can I do to deal with this? Edit: Well I've gotten a lot of flack for claiming that I'm better than my coworkers. Again, I'm not bragging, but I've been given more responsibilities my first year here than some coworkers who have had more experience. Perhaps I shouldn't say "better", just "given more responsibilities." I'll probably catch some more flack for this regardless. At any rate, I talked with one of my coworkers and it turns out it isn't the whole group, just a few people in my group. Thanks for all your comments.
post #2 of 102
post #3 of 102
Quote:
Originally Posted by Jl24 View Post
Anyone ever been ostracized at work by your own group? How do you deal with it?

I've been working at my company for about a year now and I'm still left out of my own department. When we do go to company lunches, they go into their cliques and just ignore me. I try to chitchat with them but they rarely pick up their end of conversation and I end up doing all the talking ... but when another member of the group talks with them they just keep going. Lately they've been making jokes at my expense, but when I make jokes they're met with silence.

I get along well with people in other departments ... for some reason it's just my group. I don't mean to brag, but I'm thinking it might be because I'm slightly better qualified, I do a more competent job, and my coworkers are just insecure? My coworkers are the type to just come in, do their work, and leave. On the other hand, I've always been a bit of an overachiever, going the extra mile every now and then, and my superiors have noticed that. I'm also the newest member in the group.

Anyone been ostracized at work because they're good at what they do? I've heard it happen before. What can I do to deal with this?



Just keep doing the best you can at your work, if they hate you for that, there is nothing you can do.

Socially, keep doing the same you do there as well. Keep trying to fit in, socialize, smile. Don't let their smallness and their persistence to ostracize you to make you fail in that area. Dont let them get the best of you. Just keep at it. Nothing you are doing is wrong from what I read. Good luck to you.
post #4 of 102
I'm not really the type of person to be buddy-buddy with anyone, but I don't get completely left out of the mix. But a couple guys I work with need to feel like they know everything and have to hook everyone up, so they invite themselves to people's private parties, include themselves in every conversation, etc.

They are haters, they try and knock me down a few pegs on jokes by not laughing, sometimes they won't say goodbye to me at the end of the day, etc. I just give them a taste of their own medicine and tell them what I think of them to their face sometimes.

Don't let it bother you, try to find some common ground with the most normal person. Don't act like you are better than them, cuz nobody likes that. Don't brown nose the boss either. Try and be like them as much as you can to have some sort of social life at work without compromising what is most important.
post #5 of 102
Unless you have a tendency to insult people without realizing it, it's probably for the exact reason you think it is. I haven't had many jobs, but this is a pretty common scenario in my experience. Screw them----keep working hard enough that you advance out of there quickly.
post #6 of 102
sometimes it's glaringly clear that humans are just fancy monkeys, as in the case shown by the thread starter. just play the monkey game if you want to be accepted. or learn to not care (though some people call that being anti-social, i.e. being not as monkey-like as the rest). there's a great quote by Evelyn Waugh about humans being somewhere between animal and machine, and that our state of becoming is what makes us so vile.
post #7 of 102
It sounds like you work with tools. I'd focus on doing well at work and improving connections at other areas of the organization. If your work is project based or you have to work closely with the "cool kids" then it may be a problem and you want to make sure you all are at least civil when it comes to work, otherwise they can didle themselves.
post #8 of 102
Quote:
Screw them----keep working hard enough that you advance out of there quickly.
+1. You're not there to make friends, you're there to do a job.

JB
post #9 of 102
Quote:
Originally Posted by Jl24 View Post
Anyone ever been ostracized at work by your own group? How do you deal with it?

I've been working at my company for about a year now and I'm still left out of my own department. When we do go to company lunches, they go into their cliques and just ignore me. I try to chitchat with them but they rarely pick up their end of conversation and I end up doing all the talking ... but when another member of the group talks with them they just keep going. Lately they've been making jokes at my expense, but when I make jokes they're met with silence.

I get along well with people in other departments ... for some reason it's just my group. I don't mean to brag, but I'm thinking it might be because I'm slightly better qualified, I do a more competent job, and my coworkers are just insecure? My coworkers are the type to just come in, do their work, and leave. On the other hand, I've always been a bit of an overachiever, going the extra mile every now and then, and my superiors have noticed that. I'm also the newest member in the group.

Anyone been ostracized at work because they're good at what they do? I've heard it happen before. What can I do to deal with this?


If everyone in your group treats you like a bitch, it's probably because you are one.

Read what you said again, then consider changing something in your life.
post #10 of 102
I think you need to find a good lawyer and sue. Hostile work atmosphere!
post #11 of 102
Quote:
Originally Posted by JetBlast View Post
+1. You're not there to make friends, you're there to do a job.

JB

as much as we want to or set out to do what you said, but the reality is, given that we probably spend more time with people at work every day than with our family and friends, we often end up also making the best friends and worst enemies through work too.
post #12 of 102
Quote:
Originally Posted by Violinist View Post
If everyone in your group treats you like a bitch, it's probably because you are one.

Read what you said again, then consider changing something in your life.

Are you sure you're not a violist?
post #13 of 102
one of the guys on my team is a royal pain in the ass to get along with. he does his job every well, but he is high maintanance. and, nobody really likes him. it makes my life, as his boss, very difficult.

not that that is your situation, but I would try to understand why people don't like you.
post #14 of 102
Quote:
Originally Posted by lurker View Post
as much as we want to or set out to do what you said, but the reality is, given that we probably spend more time with people at work every day than with our family and friends, we often end up also making the best friends and worst enemies through work too.

Not true. Consider this: work Mon-Fri, 8AM-5PM, that's 5 days at 9 hours a day, that's only 45 hours a week.

I believe in getting my priorities straight. My family comes first above all else. My job is to get me the income to support my family, nothing else. My job is a means to an end.

Develop friends outside of work. Most people get caught up trying to make friends at work, this not only distract you from doing your work but also potentially create hostile/unpleasant environments if relationships turn sour.

I'm not trying to say it's best to be a social hermit at work, what I'm saying is that it's important to be polite, friendly, socialabe, and approacheable. But don't make the mistake of joining cliques and trying to find friendship/companionship at work.
post #15 of 102
Quote:
Originally Posted by Violinist View Post
If everyone in your group treats you like a bitch, it's probably because you are one.

Read what you said again, then consider changing something in your life.

Quote:
Originally Posted by globetrotter View Post
one of the guys on my team is a royal pain in the ass to get along with. he does his job every well, but he is high maintanance. and, nobody really likes him. it makes my life, as his boss, very difficult.

not that that is your situation, but I would try to understand why people don't like you.

It's natural for us to sympathize with the OP, but I had something of the same reaction. I think he needs to at least consider the possibility that, as the new guy and "go-getter," he's alienating his colleagues in ways he doesn't intend.

Maybe that's wrong and they're all just losers, but the odds seem to cut the other way. I'd find the person in your group that seems least hostile to you and take him/her to lunch. Sit down and say, "Look, I'm the new guy, and I feel like I'm missing something. If I've done something to piss everyone off, I'd really like to know about it so I can change my ways." Maybe you'll learn something important. Maybe you'll learn that your perception is right and everyone is just jealous of you, or maybe no one will tell you why they don't like you, but you can hardly be worse off for trying to get to the bottom of it.
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