Just found out recently that I was being promoted to Director of HR. I've been with my company for 10 years and have worked my way up. However, I am the youngest Director at 39. I can't help but to feel that a certain older male colleague of mine who's almost 60 just does not respect me. I've saved this person from making some major blunders, yet he still treats me as if I don't know what I'm talking about. I have a masters degree and 2 senior level certifications. Anyone else dealing with this?

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With my last employer. You’re clearly competent and more than qualified. His inability to see that says more about him than it does you.


Next time let him fail.


It’s fairly common to deal with this sort of dynamic in the workplace. And, there’s a certain calculus that needs to happen:

First, what’s the impact of his behavior? If the impact is small, or limited to your hurt feelings, then you can choose to ignore him. Then the issue will resolve itself.

Second, stop saving his ass. You probably did that to show him that you do know something and it likely intimidated him …leading him to turn around and treat you like you don’t know anything. rinse and repeat.

This dynamic is just like fire - it needs certain elements to survive. Take one of the elements away and the fire dies. If you stop adding fuel to that fire it will die. Stop saving his ass.

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