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What Every Target of Workplace Bullying Needs to Know

Law Firm Bully Boss

by Cathy

My boss is a lawyer. Part of my job as a legal assistant is to make sure that the firm's settled cases get moved along in a timely manner so that the proceeds can get disbursed to the client and to the firm. Before we can get the settlement check mailed to us, our procedure states that the attorney on the file is required to write a three sentence settlement memo and post it to the file. I asked my boss at least three times to do the required attorney memo on a particular file that had settled. The boss did not get around to doing the memo. I sent him multiple messages to please write the memo, and also met with him in person about it. He told me that he would take care of it.

Two months went by without him writing the memo; I sent him another message, and had another meeting with him about it. Again he said he would do it, but after a week, still no memo. He said that he is "too busy with his case load" to take care of it.

Thinking that we could get help to get this done, I messaged the office manager asking her what to do to get the settlement check if boss keeps forgetting to do the required attorney memo. I cc'd my boss on the message to let him know that I was inquiring about getting help. He flipped out, said that none of his other girls would have done that to him, and if I ever did that again, then he wouldn't work with me (an ultimatum?).

I told him that I had been frustrated by his lack of response to my requests, and felt threatened by his ultimatum. He said that I was untrustworthy, and only interested in getting my own work done. He asked to have me removed from all of his files. I suggested that he document his files better so that his staff has a clue what he is doing with them and he yelled "who do you think you are! I am an attorney! you are not my boss! Get out of my office!"

He said that what I did to him was not cool. He is the one who lost it.

How To Deal With Workplace Bullies: What Every Target of Workplace Bullying Needs to Know

Comments for Law Firm Bully Boss

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Cathy's Boss
by: Anonymous

Cathy. Your problem with your attorney may be more complex than it appears. I don't know how old you are but several women friends and I are over 50. We have been comparing notes. We all deal with men professionally. Lately we have each had bad bullying incidents by men we encounter. Perhaps as men age (and it could be females, too) and realize they will lose control of their lives. they transfer their fear to the women who are naturally in their world. Add to that the over all stress sin the world today, and these men a very likely to s strike out at the strongest target they see. (Usually they strike the strong and the old, not the inexperienced or weak, I am told.) In other words, it appears that if we women would "dumb down," shrivel and wither into a passive nothing, the bullying men would leave us alone. By cautiously moving ahead (as you did) with what we perceive is the best way to handle their mess up, is a "no no" if we want peace and quiet from them It's a choice intelligent women have to make today. So far in our group, we've all held firm and not let them smash us into their helpless pawns. We stick together and the support helps each one of us stick to our guns. We found each other by becoming more open in what is happening to us by this bullying men and found we had common ground. By the way, attorneys are notorious bullies--it seems to come with the territory.

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