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I work for a large public-sector organisation, in a managerial capacity, based in the UK.

I started on this role about two months ago and then another team member was recruited, who I believe, as per the job description and all related conversations with management, was to report to me.

However, she (the team member) believes that she reports directly to my manager. Honestly, I do not have a problem with who she reports to. However, I do not want to be challenged at a critical moment in the project, when there are conflicting requirements.

My wife thinks that I should let the matter rest and wait for an opportune moment to clarify this with the team member itself.

Please can you advise, how I might resolve this diplomatically? and without sounding power-hungry or conceited?

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    Your manager would be the one to ask, and would be the one to clarify to her what exactly her role is. If he/she tells you the team member reports to you and for you to handle it, then do so. – Kilisi Oct 17 '18 at 6:35
  • @Kilisi: That should be an Answer! – Daniel Oct 17 '18 at 10:04
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Firstly talk to your manager, Clarify whether this employee is meant to report to you or not. You can't just go off a job description.

Secondly, if your manager says no then you just have to continue. If she says yes this person is meant to report to you then you can bring up your concerns that she is not and that you feel you are being challenged and its effecting the progress in the critical moments.

At the end of the day it is your manager who needs to sort this issue. If this person is reporting to your manager and your manager hasn't mentioned anything to her then this could be your manager is okay with it?

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My wife thinks that I should let the matter rest and wait for an opportune moment to clarify this with the team member itself.

Please can you advise, how I might resolve this diplomatically? and without sounding power-hungry or conceited?

Your wife is wrong. This is a question for your manager, not the team member.

Don't wait. Talk to your manager now. Ask if you are expected to manage the new person or not.

If you ask for understanding, it won't sound power-hungry or conceited. As @DavidK stated so well - the goal of the conversation is to make sure you know what your responsibilities are so you can ensure you are doing your job properly. It's not about understanding who is managing your colleague, it's about knowing who you need to be managing.

Then ask your manager if you should be the one to clarify things with the new team member or if your manager should do it. Most likely it will be you. When you talk to the team member, just clear up the confusion matter-of-factly.

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    If you ask for understanding, it won't sound power-hungry or conceited. Exactly, the goal of the conversation is to make sure you know what your responsibilities are so you can ensure you are doing your job properly. It's not about understanding who is managing your colleague, it's about knowing who you need to be managing. – David K Oct 17 '18 at 11:47
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    Do this immediately. Perception is reality. Fix the perception before it becomes reality. – Wesley Long Oct 17 '18 at 18:41

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