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Ask L2: Saved a Huge Deal and now Ostracized. WTF?

“I worked 80+ hour weeks for six months and barely saw my children . . . Now I’m excluded from leadership meetings and criticized at every turn.”

Disclaimer: Identities are kept confidential. The advice given here should be taken at your own risk. If you are having true mental or physical issues, please seek professional assistance.

It’s a lot. I was hired as a strategic consultant. Convinced to come on full time at a lower rate as a Senior Manager of Business Ops. Promoted to Chief of Staff six months later, but only given a 10k raise. I was asked to lead the due diligence process for selling the business - and promised a cash transaction bonus, earnouts, a salary of at least 160k, and a leadership/exec position at the new company.

I NAILED IT. I saved the deal through sheer determination and sacrifice - I worked 80+ hour weeks for six months and barely saw my children. The damn deal wouldn’t have gone through - would have never even gotten off the ground if it wasn’t for me!!

The deal closed on 3/31. I got a shitty $25,000 bonus and they TOOK AWAY my standard $11k bonus, my other $10k spot bonuses, gave me a shitty pay bump, and GAVE A MALE COLLEAGUE that has been with the company for five months the earnouts that were supposed to go to me. NO EXPLANATION.

And the WORST part is now I am being ostracized. Excluded from leadership meetings and criticized at every turn. I was told to stop sending emails after work hours today (this was praised and encouraged and appreciated two weeks ago before closing).

I’m literally in shock. And furious and betrayed. Now my role at the company is “still being defined”. My boss, the CEO, has stopped communicating with me and suddenly I now report to the COO. I don’t know what to do.


Wow. This sucks hard. The first question is, how many of these promises were given to you in writing? The more the better. I hope you have documentation of as much as possible.

Regardless, though, I would consult an attorney. I'm not one, so I can't tell you what your rights are and if the promises are enforceable, but they will be able to tell you those things. It's never too soon to get an attorney if you're being screwed over, and if you're not trying to preserve the relationship, it might be just what you need to get what you deserve and part with a required neutral reference.

While I don't have the details here, I hope anyone who reads this knows that if they say it out loud, they should be willing to put it in writing, even if the writing is just an email confirming the conversation and the timelines that were discussed. If they won't do that, then don't believe it and question anything else they have promised as well. You can't commit to something, even verbally, and just not follow through when it comes to pay and titles, but it is way harder to enforce if there isn't a paper trail.

There are a lot of unscrupulous employers who will say whatever it takes to get people to put the work in and then pull the rug out when it's time to follow through. They could do that even if they put it in writing. You have more recourse, however, if you have the documentation if you decide to pursue something through legal channels.

I wish you a better role, a more supportive leadership team, and fewer jerk faces who will lie to get what they want. You deserve better.


Photo by JESHOOTS.COM on Unsplash.


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Couldn't be more angrier reading this! Pls, get an attorney so you know the best way forward. All the best.


Wow, bad players, I can empathize. I hope you find a lawyer to help you, this makes me so sad and so angry…..

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