Dear Dan: I Feel Excluded and Disrespected

Dear Dan,

Years ago, my boss was receptive to my opinions regarding changes in the office. We maintained a warm, professional relationship.

However, in recent years, I have noticed that she does not involve me in changes or decisions regarding the office.

We have two problem employees who do not respect me and find ways to constantly undermine me. I have discussed this with my boss and HR, but their negative behavior continues to this day.

Clients also complain about them and when I relay the message to my boss, I feel that she shuts me out or does not take me seriously.

Those two employees bring in a lot of business as they know many people in their community who need our services.

Do you feel that it is time for me to look for a new job? I like what I do but it is hard to tolerate these two characters on a daily basis. Thank you in advance for your feedback.


On the Outs

Dear On the Outs,

Thanks for your email. Your assessment has the ring of truth. Some leaders tolerate high performing jerks. In the process, others suffer.

Your email also reminds me that feeling respected, valued, and included is essential to satisfaction and commitment. 8 out of 10 employees who feel disrespected are less committed. (SHRM)


  1. Could you adjust expectations and be happy in your current role if things don’t change?
  2. How is the job market in your area?
  3. Are you willing to relocate?
  4. How satisfied are you that you adequately shared your concerns?

A quick thought. You’ve been with the organization a long time. A move could ignite growth.


Make the decision to find a new position.

Sometimes we don’t know how we feel until we make a decision.

After making the decision, how do you feel? Is there enough positive energy to continue moving forward? Or, do you yearn to stay where you are?

You’ve dedicated many years to your organization. Realize that choosing to leave creates some anxiety and sadness. However, do you sense reasonable enthusiasm for new opportunities?

If you move on:

A negative situation is motivating you to move on. Once you commit to leave, shift your thinking.

“Running toward” is more desirable than “running away.”

It’s more effective to focus on the future than to cuddle up with a disappointing past.

Think more about what you want and less about what you don’t want.


You write, “In recent years,” and, “years ago.” This makes me think that you’re a patient person, perhaps too patient.

You might spend time reflecting on how action-oriented you are.

Another point of reflection might be around power. How much power are you giving to others to create the world you hope to enjoy?

The above reflection points might not apply, but if they do, a mentor may help you navigate this growth moment.

You have my best,


What suggestions do you have for “On the Outs.”

Don’t miss yesterday’s post: The Cost and Opportunity of Standing-With

Note: I suspend my 300 word limit for Dear Dan posts.