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Did My Boss Unfairly Promote the New Hire?

Dear J.T. & Dale: A new hire was promoted to a new position. She is smart, a quick learner, etc. No dispute there. But, there are at least two qualified, proven people who were not offered the position. The boss seems to be very much attracted to the new hire. It's so obvious that others have noticed and made remarks. No one dares to go to HR, as the HR manager seems to be behind the hiring. The group feels a bit down due to this perceived unfairness. On the other hand, the boss has never been so open and social with anyone before. What to do? - Gayle J.T.: Your manager hasn't broken any rules, not that I can see. DALE: He's certainly operating well within the laws of nature. We all have attractions of various kinds, often subconscious. It may well be a romantic attraction, but not necessarily. We use the word "chemistry" to describe relationships for a reason; they often move beyond mere logic. J.T.: So if you leave behind "mere logic," what does that suggest that Gayle actually do? DALE: That she not prejudge the boss, the new hire or their relationship - it sounds as though their personal chemistry could boost the team chemistry. J.T.: In that case, I agree. I'd go further, Gayle, and suggest that you align yourself with the new employee. For whatever reason, she has the manager's attention. Befriend her, and you may find your own relationship with the boss improving. If she has the ability to bring him out of his shell, instead of your being resentful, why not use it to your advantage? If that doesn't work, then just wait. These intense interpersonal relationships often burn out. Something will happen to change the dynamic. DALE: True. Cynical, but true, especially if it's romantic. But for the sake of the team, I hope it isn't that, but rather two people who bring out the best in each other. It can lift the team and ultimately help everyone's career. J.T.: Speaking of careers, if you are feeling passed over for promotion, the best approach is to go to management and let them know that you are hoping to advance. Be careful not to be seen as complaining about what has transpired; rather, let them know that you are someone who is working to make herself better and to become ever more qualified for promotion. Boss promoted new hire image from Bigstock