And the new manager is just as bad.

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Q: Although I have loved my job for 12 years, things have been going downhill ever since some new people arrived. Now I have a group of co-workers who are nothing but trouble. These petty, spiteful backstabbers constantly criticize the rest of us and keep trying to change the way we work.

My manager is no help because she’s just as bad. If you complain about a co-worker, she either ignores the problem or makes things worse by telling the person what you said. I’ve heard her make negative comments about the staff and question our abilities.

I’m afraid to go over her head because life would be hell if she found out. Besides, our new vice president supports the changes she is making, so he probably doesn’t want any complaints. How should I handle this?

A: Reading between the lines, I assume your boss is also new and the vice president placed her in this role. If so, his support for her is hardly surprising because he’s the one who chose her. And if your manager hired the annoying co-workers, she is similarly likely to support them.

In that case, you are facing a dilemma often encountered by long-term employees. When a new executive arrives, major changes follow almost inevitably. As a result, a familiar and comfortable workplace can suddenly feel like alien territory.

When this occurs, one common mistake is to view these changes as “wrong” rather than simply “different.” Instead of assessing ideas objectively, employees quickly become argumentative and resistant, thereby doing considerable damage to their future career prospects.

You have correctly concluded that complaining is not a wise move at this point. But if you make a sincere effort to welcome new people and new approaches, you may find that management is open to well-intentioned suggestions which are properly presented.

On the other hand, if you determine that the place you knew and loved has disappeared forever, it may be time to polish up your résumé. Because even though you can’t bring back the past, you might be able to find it elsewhere.

Q: The last time a national holiday fell on Monday, the owner of our business said we would have the day off. However, on Thursday he changed his mind and said Monday would be a normal workday. When we asked why, he just said there was a lot of work to do.

Losing our holiday after we had already made plans left everyone in complete shock. Now we’re afraid the owner is setting a precedent which makes any holiday basically optional. What recourse do we have?

A: Your owner sounds like an inconsiderate jerk. In the absence of any urgent need, cancelling a promised holiday was completely unforgivable. If this decision reflects his usual management style, the guy may have difficulty keeping quality employees.

Nevertheless, you may be surprised to learn that holidays are, as you say, “basically optional.” There is no federal law requiring private employers to grant any holidays at all. Most do, of course, but that’s an individual business decision. However, your city or state may require that certain days be observed, so perhaps you should explore that possibility.