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New Hires Conflict Cliques Teamwork

There is a new employee in our work group who is smart, efficient, and friendly. Most of the people I work with want nothing to do with her, but I like her. I don't want to alienate my co-workers, but I refuse to ignore her. Is there a way to reconcile this?

When a clique has decided that a smart, efficient, and friendly person must be avoided, one might wonder who should be avoiding whom.

One way to resolve this matter is through the leadership role that you play. If you are a leader in this group, there is a chance that your acceptance of the new employee will signal to the others that she is "okay." You should encourage them to spend more time with her.

If you are not one of the group leaders, the other approach is for you to meet with the leader and encourage him or her to be more supportive of the new person. When the clique's leader is receptive to a new person, so are the followers.

This situation may ultimately be reconciled through managerial action. Your manager may notice what is going on, or perhaps the new person will go to the manager and indicate that she is unable to meet the job expectations because of a lack of support from her co-workers, excluding you. If management gets involved, this clique is not likely to click for long.

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