Although my emails are not specifically work related, we are a small company who need to work collectively without personal conflicts and his attitude towards me causes a lot of tension, yet he is the one accusing me of victimising him.

We have a parking situation where those who have worked at the company the longest gets a parking space as part of the deal when first employed. There are only 6 spaces but out of courtesy we allow this colleague to park as the 7th car and one of us will double park (has to be a small car). The problem we have is that our big cars (mummy wagons) struggle to fit into the small space at the end as it is obstructed by bins and cars which are parked opposite. The company opposite have allowed us to double park as long it is a small car and doesn't prevent them from parking, which it has done in the past. This colleague I am having a problem with refuses to park his small car in that spot as well as he thinks his car is as wide as the big cars. But as many have mentioned to him in the past, his car isn't as long so another small car can park behind him and his car also has the turning circle that the big cars don't.

To cut a long story short, I emailed everyone who parks to please follow the agreement we made over a year ago that whomever arrives first and has a small car should park in the far end space. I emailed everyone because everyone should be following this rule and I thought I can't email him directly as this would be targeting him only. But really he is the only one that doesn't follow this rule, everyone else makes an effort to make it easier for everyone. After sending a group email, a few people responded agreeing, whilst he ignored the email and continued to park in a spot that forced a big car to park in the far end. I then emailed him directly, CCing in two managers. I sent a polite, professional email saying maybe he missed my email from the day before and politely made the same request again. He then told others in the office and the boss that I was targeting him and practically bullying him because I keep emailing him about it. But he completely ignores my emails not just by continuously parking in a spot that makes it difficult for everyone else but also by not responding to me at all and instead talking about me behind my back and making himself to be the victim.

I then get emailed by the boss telling me that I should have gone to management about the problem, which the last time I did, he still ignored their request and they did nothing about it. As it isn't technically work related I didn't feel like I needed to go to them and they have also made me feel like I am causing too much of a fuss and that they are too bust to deal with my nonsense. But I am not the only one affected by this. One of the other big cars nearly broke her mirror off and damaged her alloys because she was forced to park in that spot, it also took her 10 mins of manoeuvring to get out. I just spoke up for the many and now I am being accused of bullying. What am I supposed to do if my managers won't even deal with the problem. My boss even said the last time we had this same problem, that if he wasn't happy about the parking situation she would remove his right to park there as he has no agreement in his contract to park there at all. The 6 cars that do have the rights all have to move around to accommodate his extra car. Now my boss is too scared to upset him because she is scared he will sue the company for making him depressed (which another colleague has done in the past). This is the only reason why he is still employed as well. He doesn't perform well, he has an attitude to most of his colleagues, one that the boss has picked up on too yet she won't give him warnings about his lack of performance and the multiple mistakes he makes.

Am I really being a bully or am I in the right here?

closed as off-topic by gnat, Draken, Dukeling, IDrinkandIKnowThings, Chris E Sep 19 '17 at 13:38

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  • 1
    "As it isn't technically work related" - It's a workplace issue, therefore it is work related. – thebluefox Sep 19 '17 at 9:12
  • Is it possible your colleague has very little confidence in his ability to park safely in the smaller-than-normal space? – user34587 Sep 19 '17 at 10:07
  • He actually has a go at the girls not being able to drive and says he is a confident driver. Although maybe this is just a front as it is usually banter he has with the other men in the office. – guest101 Sep 19 '17 at 11:03
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    she is scared he will sue the company for making him depressed, ahem ... that does seems a good way to keep a job while being paid to underperform if not even doing anything there. This is the only reason why he is still employed as well, assuming it's not your interpretation but the reality. Your boss should just get some legal advice about how to do that properly, he maybe the first like that but he won't be the last, your boss has to know how to handle this (or hire someone in HR field). – Walfrat Sep 19 '17 at 11:15
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    Right or wrong, you should do what your manager tells you. At this point I don't really see anything for you to do about this - you are not his manager, it's not your problem to deal with. – Dukeling Sep 19 '17 at 12:01

Given the previous history you probably should have informally approached your boss before the direct e-mail you sent but that's not a big thing really. The actual issue is more that your boss is being a bit useless and won't manage an underperforming/disruptive coworker. The good news is that it sounds like they are aware of this coworker's tendencies towards playing the victim and unless the boss crosses the line from "a bit useless" into "out and out rubbish" they are unlikely to be taking the coworkers accusations seriously or acting on them. Of course if they show any signs that they are doing anything like that I'd be running. Very fast.

As for how to proceed I hate to say it but this is probably one of those things you aren't going to be able to "fix", about the best you can do is cover yourself the best you can and gently remind them that managing the job of, well the manager. Try talking to your boss one on one and say something like:

Hi [Boss], as you know we have been having problems with [Coworker] and their parking and that when I attempted to resolve it they thought I was attacking or bullying them. That wasn't my intention and I don't want them to feel like that I was just trying to resolve the issue. Are you okay to pick this up with [Coworker] or is there a way you'd like me to handle it if it comes up again?

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