I work for a reputed software company as a developer. In the team I'm working, my architect does not like me.

Recently, I was assigned an issue for which I needed architect's guidance. I had found the root cause and wanted his guidance to fix it, but he was permanently disagreeing with my solution. Unfortunately for some reason, I had to take leave. This issue was assigned to my colleague.

My colleague who had fixed the issue with the architect guidance told me the exact solution as mine. But I was really frustrated because architect had told him that I'm a spoon fed developer who has a zilch idea of the issue, etc.

Is this work ethics, how can I take action on this. Or how should I react to this.

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    Backbiting is kind of a harsh term. You possibly have and architect that likes the ideas to be his. Some times you need to spoon feed them and let it be their idea. – paparazzo Oct 16 '15 at 18:26
  • No need to take action. The problem is fixed and you can move on to the next issue. However you should do what ever it will take to get back on the right side of your architect. – IDrinkandIKnowThings Oct 16 '15 at 21:45
  • there is always the possibility that while you think your solution was identical, you were not explaining it well enough in terms the architect could understand in his/her own way of looking at things – Kilisi Oct 16 '15 at 22:47
  • There are plenty of places to work. Float your resume and get out of there. (You make more money by changing jobs most of the time anyway, just hold out for a +5% raise from what you're making now.) Or better yet, start your own software development firm and you can call the shots. – Michael Blankenship Oct 17 '15 at 21:50

First off, not everyone is going to like you. You're going to have people in the workplace that just don't care for you, and might even be kind of mean to you. This is something that just has to be dealt with by you being the bigger person, showing them kindness even in times where they are being jerks and trying to work with them as little as you can.

Now, on to the issue at hand. If this "hatred" towards you is affecting your work, that is unacceptable. You need to go to a superior and let them know what is going on, and that this co-worker's actions are hurting your overall ability to do your job effectively. You shouldn't have to work in a "hostile" work environment and that shouldn't be accepted by anyone.

Now I know you don't want to be a "tattle tale" as the kids say, but you have to think about your jobs well being first and foremost! Your job comes first and if they're being hostile towards you in a sense where they won't help you, it's going to make you look bad. If there is another architect you could go to for advice or someone else entirely you could go to to help you solve problems, that could be another step you take.

The simplest solution is to go to upper management and let them know what's happening and hope they take care of it from there. No one ever said you had to like who you're working with, but as long as this architect gets set straight, he/she might at least help you out when you need it, even if you guys don't have a friendship connection.

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Your colleague really should not be relaying negative second-hand comments about you, as it has not improved the situation. His motives may not be what you think they are, as he could be using you against the architect.

Another way to deal with this issue is to simply minimize your involvement with the architect. A good architect would accept any ideas from anyone because the primary goal is to get the best solution. Often the issue is less about the ideas, but how the ideas are presented. Some people act more on their emotions than others. It looks like this architect is more on the emotional side than the rational thinking side, assuming that you are presenting the ideas in a neutral manner.

In my experience:

  1. Some people are hired for their opinions.

    • Architects and leads are valued for their opinions.
    • Regular developers are more or fewer grunts whose opinion matters less.
    • Management is generally non-technical and finds emotional security in valuing opinions of architects and leads over regular developers.
    • Managers are generally more concerned about their own job. Whether the manager manages up or down, they typically listen to the leads over the regular developer to ensure their job is secure. "What would happen if they let a person who was not an accepted decision maker make decisions?" is what they ask themselves.
    • Most employers make no effort to help a regular developer into a lead or architect role. You really got to jump around jobs for this, as like it or not you get labeled as one kind of person/developer and moving onto to a lead or architect is difficult when there is the safer option for management to trust existing leads and architects.
  2. Not all experience is equal; this architect might not really be an architect.

    • Not every place accurately promotes people.
    • Some are promoted through time served at the company (company tenure)
    • Some are promoted through total time in the industry (industry tenure)
    • Some are promoted through lack of funds to hire
    • Some are promoted because the hiring process is too slow
    • Some are promoted through friendship
    • Some are promoted through a power vacuum.
    • Some are promoted through successful project execution
    • Some are promoted through hijacking all the domain knowledge
    • Some are promoted through job hopping
    • Some are promoted through fear of knowledge flight ( workers threaten to leave and they get a promotion to keep them)
    • Some are promoted through an objective process

    So you have to ask yourself how this architect was given his position to better understand how he is thinking. People who gain their positions without putting in the work (all but the last one), but through other means are going to always brush aside anything that threatens their position without really thinking too much about it. If the person has been in the company for a while, they have already made friends with people who are going to support him and protect him. Therefore, you are forced to play a long political game where you gain trust and allies in the company so that you can influence established people.

So my suggestion is to realize that your employer is not asking you or requiring you to be as emotionally involved in your work as you are now. If they were interested in harnessing your passion they would provide an outlet for it, as passion is the greatest attribute of an employee, but one of the most difficult to align with the business. I suggest you find another outlet for your passion and focusing on meeting other people's expectations at work. Do not spend as much effort coming up with ideas or solutions if they are not going to be accepted. That way if the architect or some lead say no, there is no reason to be upset.

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Could be you have an architect that likes it to be his idea?

And it looks like you like to get credit. Not a good combination.

I have had more than one architect that was like that and the best bet is to just let it be their idea. You can say what what do you think about this and if they say OK then thank them for their idea.

We had this controlling boss and one team member had it down to an art form. He would pose a question and then propose like his second or third option and give a hint as to his number one choice. Then the boss would come back with number one and take all the credit.

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  • This is a viable strategy; it's also ridiculous. Someone in a senior position who is unwilling to listen to others needs to be removed from that position, not spoon-fed answers to be regurgitated. – Ben Oct 17 '15 at 6:11

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