Author Topic: the other SM is behaving badly!  (Read 7909 times)

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the other SM is behaving badly!
« on: Sep 25, 2007, 08:59 am »
It's my rookie year as a professional stage manager, and the stage manager with whom I rotate shows has been trying to subvert everything I've done since I got here. And he's had ample opportunity - he's been in my first two casts!  I expected him to be <i>more</i> professional than the actors, but he's turned out to be less professional than anyone else working here. He has never complained to me about anything... instead he runs straight to the Artistic Director with every little quibble from not liking when I called "places" to his not hearing that a rehearsal break was ending (he had decided to read in another part of the theatre without telling me). He goes so far as to forward the e-mails I send to the actors on to the AD to complain about them (I get "read" receipts on e-mails so I know which actors have gotten the information and to whom it's been forwarded). I've continued to treat him the same as other cast members, and ALL of the other actors compliment me on making their jobs easier and more fun for them, so I know I'm not doing anything inappropriate and that I'm doing my job.

I suppose the worst part is that the AD feels some allegience to him. Instead of telling him these are issues to talk to the SM about, she not only listens to his complaints, but then micromanages my job by essentially ordering me to do things his way (which - believe me - greatly dumbs down the job), I've been told to change the content of my e-mails and the call board (I like creating a fun workplace - he evidently didn't want to have to live up to that). Unfortunately, his casts have no respect for him, and being boxed in by this micromanagement will prevent me from developing a positive rapport with my casts (at the very least, I have to check over my shoulder all the time).

I should be able to say that I won't work on a show if he's in the cast, and that the AD needs to stop micromanaging me, but I'm the new kid, and I'm just going to start looking elsewhere. Their loss!

EDIT - Not my story, submitted by an old member.  Don't know the name, unfortunately.
« Last Edit: Sep 25, 2007, 04:22 pm by PSMKay »


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Re: the other SM is behaving badly!
« Reply #1 on: Sep 25, 2007, 03:32 pm »
I'm so sorry that you're having this experience but happy to see that you're not devaluing yourself.  As much as possible, I hope you'll continue to create a fun workplace and to make those around you happy.  Perhaps you can have some discussion with the other person to let him know you're going to work how you work and to ask him to respect the difference, promising you'll do the same.  The thing is, SMs who create a good workplace build good reputations very quickly, so I'm sure you'll have other opportunities before you know it.  Hang in there!