The software company I work in just hired another developer. I work on some project for 4 months already. I do not manage the project, though do a lot of work there. Project is in bad condition (a lot of things must be fixed), but I cannot affect it since I do not manage the project. I tried, but it did not help. Anyway: I did a lot of work and much more still has to be done.

So, the new developer publicly and very harshly blamed me that it is me who is responsible for the project state. And this is not true. In my personal life I would kick his ass. But in professional life... First of all I told him to take tasks and start working instead of criticizing. But I don't want to leave it as is: he shows disrespect and starts a war between colleagues.

How can I address this?

  • Report to manager / to HR ? – Walfrat Aug 25 '16 at 7:21
  • The problem is not that he should work instead of criticising. At least not your problem. Your problem that you were very publicly badmouthed and the only solution to fix this problem is an equally public apology. That's what you need to go for. And don't ask me how to do this politely or without hurting his feelings, because he lost the right to politeness or unhurt feelings. – gnasher729 Aug 25 '16 at 8:23

The first thing that comes to mind is:
Sit together with him and your manager. Make a clear statement that you do not expect (or maybe even accept) this kind of behavior*.
This is a message that you all three have to be aligned with, and if the relations between you three are not made clear early, this will keep on festering.

If he has issues with the way thing are or have been going (and have been he does not have actual knowledge of) he should address that with the manager, or better, you should all three talk about those.

But (and that is the second thing), between the lines of your question I sense some friction between you and your manager (I do not manage the project. I tried, but it did not help). This also needs to be cleared up between you and your manager. Do you have an opinion about your manager handling things badly? That will be in the way with a lot of things.
Since this is speculation on my part, I will not go deeper into this, it would be worth a separate question (maybe such questions are already on the site).

BTW Note that a newcomer always has criticism. It's the same as you receiving code from someone else: mmm, this looks bad, why did they do that?

* One thing he has to learn that you never publicly blame people in a professional environment

  • 1
    Public blame in a profession environment is unacceptable, even if he were your superior, and even if he were right, and apparently he is neither. – gnasher729 Aug 25 '16 at 8:24

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