This has been happening for decades now. If you work in corporate and you don’t have the word “manager” or “director” in your title, then you may not be receiving the same level of treatment from all your colleagues.
It’s something that I’m just now starting to accept. Some people just don’t show the same respect to entry- or mid-level employees. Are they rude? Sometimes. But that doesn’t stop me from doing my job.
I come from a long line of disciplined, hardworking people. My grandfather worked for General Electric all his life, while my grandmother took care of the household and the kids. My mom is a former 30-year employee of our city’s police department and my oldest brother (almost old enough to be my dad) was in the military for nearly 10 years. All this to say, I’ve always been taught to show respect to all my authority figures. However, because of the generation I’m accustomed to, I’m also a firm believer in “showing respect to get respect”. So basically, I fall somewhere in the middle.
This middle ground helps me establish when it’s time to stand up for myself and when it’s time to bite the bullet. Of course, I never put up with outright disrespect, but I have come to understand that lashing out — especially in the workplace — is not the way to educate people about being more tactful.
If I’m leading a specific project, I make it known that the project belongs to me and falls directly under me. I’ve had situations where my coworkers would ignore my feedback, as if what I’m saying is completely irrelevant or not “insightful” enough since I’m not a manager and I don’t “fully understand” the problem at hand. In those times, I politely reminded them that my manager has fully entrusted me with this project and that if they have any further questions or concerns, then I’ll be happy to help them.
When you notice your coworkers looking over you or treating you like you’re not important, just remember not to take it personally. Everyone is wrapped up in their own egos, and they don’t quite understand that a job title is just a job title — something that can quickly change. Just in the last month or so, my current department has already undergone multiple job title changes that no one foresaw earlier this year.
I’m not exactly sure what this post was supposed to be, but I hope it helps someone out there who’s going through this. The best is yet to come. And you never know what’s right around the corner. Keep your head up, kid.