I own a business and there are 4 of us on the management team, one of whom started in early May – let’s call her Sally. One of the other two – “Ann”- seems to be avoiding talking to Sally directly when challenges come up, and instead brought one concern to me and then raised an issue obliquely in a meeting we had today. My unintentional model looks like:
C- Ann complained about Sally to me instead of going to Sally directly, and she brought an issue to the team meeting better discussed between she and Sally.
T- I wish Ann would work directly with Sally!
A- probably raise it with Ann but some level of frustration
R- Ann gets defensive and feels misunderstood
A more intentional model could be:
C- as above
T- something is bothering Ann that she is finding hard to deal with directly
F- empathy; a desire to help since I am a more senior leader and the owner of the business
A- speak with Ann and….share with her my observations and ask her what meaning I should make of it and if she needs my help…?
Desired Result- averting a difficult relationship b/w two of my senior leaders while also letting Ann feel like the valued team member she is
May I please have your comments? When I think about a meeting with Ann, I have a sinking feeling that she may feel criticized by me but I think my intuition is accurate that she is acting in a passive-aggressive way to our newest management team member.