Get advice on how to deal with jerks at work Check out the book 'Jerks At Work' and other titles by Ken Lloyd Ph.D. Return to the homepage Learn more about Ken Lloyd, Ph.D. Submit a question to Ken Lloyd, Ph.D.

You asked, Ken answers ...

This item is filed under these categories:
Meetings Assertiveness Communication Honesty

When I joined this company in a fairly senior position, the chief operating officer included me in most of the high-level meetings that focused on strategies and planning. For some reason, I am now being left out. When I ask him why, he apologizes and says he meant to include me, but then he does the same thing at the next meeting. What should I do?

It appears that you and the chief operating officer do not have a meeting of the minds when it comes to meetings. It is possible that he is so busy that he is not thinking carefully when he sets up these meetings, but it is also possible that he no longer wants you to attend.

You should maintain more regular contact with him. If there are matters to review with him, try to do so in person. Let him see the insights and foresight that you can apply to work-related matters. In these discussions, bring up the topic of planning meetings and reemphasize your interest in attending.

In addition, you probably know other managers who are likely to attend these planning and strategizing meetings, and you should ask one or two of them to let you know the next time one is scheduled. Once you hear about it, let the chief operating officer know that you would like to attend.

With this approach you will soon discern whether this individual means to include you, exclude you, or delude you. From that point, you will be able to do some better planning and strategizing for yourself.

Comment on this item

Your name (optional)
If you leave this blank, we'll list you as "Website visitor"

Your comments
Please keep your comments focused on the topic. Thanks!