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I just started a new job in May that is basically a step up from my old one - very similar work, just more responsibility and more high-profile clients. In my previous job I always got my work done on time and had excellent client relationships. Generally speaking I am good at what I do and have gained a reputation in my organization for being good at what I do. That reputation led my now current boss to seek me out for a position on her team. So far, I've met every deadline and have even taken on an additional, emergency client that no one else had the capacity to. In the interview when I asked about flexibility and scheduling I was told that other than ensuring I was at all of my meetings and get my work done, I had flexibility to set my own hours.

In the past my boss had issues with people on her team not doing their work. And I mean not at all - just straight up saying the project was done and hoping no one would check on it, even for a months long project. My new boss's approach to solving this problem isn't performance reviews (which I'd be fine with), but to track our hours. It is to the point where if we want to run an errand during the day we aren't allowed to make it up by tacking the hour onto our day, we have to take a vacation hour to do it and get it approved. We are also expected to remain at work for precisely our 8 hour day, even though we are salaried and project-based, not hours based.

This is causing me several problems:

  1. In my previous role, as long as I didn't have any meetings to attend or other deadlines, the work was much more flexible

  2. Some days I simply don't have much to do. I'm fast at my work and I get it done. I find myself spinning my wheels for an hour before my designated home time

  3. I have zero motivation to work outside of these hours. I used to be happy to come in early, stay late, check and respond to emails over the weekend, but now my feeling is that my boss doesn't see value in those things. If I have to take an hour's vacation to go run an errand, I'm not going to give her an hour outside of work time

  4. I am unable to deal with little tasks that I have to handle, like taking my daughter to school if my partner is unable to, since in order to do that I have to get it approved by a manager

I feel that I am not trusted to do my job and that I'm losing motivation. My boss so far has consistently praised my work and I know I'm still good at it. How do I tell my boss that I've got this, and that her attitude is preventing me from really putting in my all?

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  • Usual question: What does "my boss" mean? Are they the company owner, or a supervisor or manager?
    – gnasher729
    Jul 8, 2022 at 17:49
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    They are my manager (I'm not sure what the difference would be between supervisor and manager). They are in a sort of lower-to-middle management role in a rather large (>5000 employee) organization
    – work572
    Jul 8, 2022 at 17:51
  • @JoeStrazzere I haven't said anything yet. That's why I'm asking here :)
    – work572
    Jul 8, 2022 at 18:44
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    If you are in the United States of America, this is almost certainly a serious violation of the Fair Labor Standards Act. You are being treated like hourly employees (required to clock in and out on a schedule), but are not classified as hourly employees. This can get a company into very serious legal trouble. Jul 9, 2022 at 2:14
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    Generally speaking I am good at what I do and have gained a reputation in my organization for being good at what I do. That reputation led my now current boss to seek me out for a position on her team. - you have been hired because you were good at your job then. It would not be unreasonable to mention that you need the flexibility you had, to be able to be as productive here too. Jul 9, 2022 at 11:40

1 Answer 1

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How do I tell my boss that I've got this, and that her attitude is preventing me from really putting in my all?

You could have a chat with your boss in private, and see if you can understand things from her point of view. Perhaps it will just take time to earn her trust - ask about that. Or perhaps you aren't the problem but others on your team are, and she wants to have the same rule for everyone.

Don't say that you aren't putting in your all. That won't look good for you. Don't say that her attitude is a problem. Attacking your boss's attitude is a bad idea.

You may well conclude that this job doesn't give you the flexibility you desire and that you need to find a new one.

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