Preferential treatment isn’t just a problem on the Good Morning America set.
It’s decidedly not a good morning for these Americans.
Football star turned “Good Morning America” anchor Michael Strahan isn’t well-loved among his fellow anchors, who feel like he gets preferential treatment, sources tell the New York Post. “They roll out the carpet for [Strahan] while seasoned talent is treated like dirt. He’s been given a lot of opportunity, flexibility, when the others who have been working there longer don’t get that kind of treatment,” a source told the paper.
Plus, there is “not a lot of love” between co-hosts Lara Spencer and Strahan. She “feels like her role has been minimized with Strahan,” as “he’s doing a lot of what Lara should be doing and she’s not happy,” a source tells the paper. (An ABC News executive told the paper that Spencer and Strahan get along great and that Strahan is “lovely” with everyone, and a rep for the station noted that the show has never been better.)
Most of us know exactly that feels: The boss hires someone new and now they are the “golden child” who gets a special schedule, plum projects or other perks that you don’t get — despite the years you’ve put in with the company, the hours of hard work you’ve given to the firm.
So Moneyish asked career experts: How do you handle the new “golden child” at work?
You may first want to decide whether this is worth bringing up to the boss at all, says career coach Hallie Crawford, founder of HallieCrawford.com Career Counseling. Do a reality check, asking if your other colleagues feeling the same, says career coach Roy Cohen, author of The Wall Street Professional’s Survival Guide. Also ask whether the special treatment an occasional thing? If so, it might be best to keep your head down and move on. “Sometimes the best way to make a point is simply to focus on your work,” says career coach Carlota Zimmerman, founder of Carlota Worldwide. “While everyone else is bitching and moaning about the new kid on the block, management will notice that you got your work done on time and rose above.”
If the special treatment is recurring thing, you may want to request a meeting with your boss, and “rehearse what you’re going to say, make an intelligent case as to why you should be getting the projects based on your past accomplishments, relationships with other colleagues and companies,” says Zimmerman. Don’t talk about how you feel jealous or frustrated, says Crawford: “Keep it positive and ask them how you can begin working on the special projects or if you can be considered for them. Ask them if there something you need to do differently or skills you need to obtain in order to get those projects.”
But before you meet with the boss, take a look at what’s really going on with the golden child to help inform the conversation. If the golden child is taking your projects “be on guard — this new person might be your replacement,” says Cheryl Palmer, the founder of Call to Career. “My suggestion is that you do some inventory to see what might have changed recently. Are you considered a top performer? What was your last performance review like? Did you lose a battle with management on some issue? The answers to these questions might indicate that the reason that your projects are being taken away from you and given to the golden child is because you have fallen out of favor at the company, and this new person is being prepared to take your place.” In that case, ask the boss in your meeting about how you can improve your performance.
But if nothing has changed in your own job, it might not be that your job is in danger,” Palmer adds. “It may just be that for some reason management is enamored with this new hire. In that case, my advice would be to be as gracious as possible under the circumstances. Unless the person is a superior employee (or is exceptionally good at kowtowing to management), it will be soon apparent that this golden child is no more special than anyone else at the company,” she says.
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