Being disrespected 🤬 / ignored 😶 in an IT job. What do you do?

helleworld_ profile image Desiré 👩‍🎓👩‍🏫 Updated on ・2 min read

Hello, users! 👋

I'd like to ask for your advice.

I've been almost 3 years working as a web designer/developer and I'm an UX/UI specialist.

I've been working a whole year in the Smart City sector (you can read more here) and the rest of my experience is about web design/development.

I don't consider myself a senior but I wouldn't say I'm a junior, either. I've been also teaching, gave a conference about Smart Cities and I'm an active writer in IT matters.

However, in the companies where I worked there was always a kind of lack of respect towards me, not giving any credit to my knowledge, skills and experience. I've been having real bad times and lack of opportunities because I've been considered less qualified than I actually am.

I've been thinking why could that be, since my work was good and never had complaints from the clients or my bosses, but even though, I've been treated like if I knew nothing of what I'm doing and I was even humiliated once in front of my colleagues.

I'm 23 years old. I've been considering that the source of this kind of treatment could be that I'm young and self-taught.

Did you face this kind of treatment or situation before? Have you witnessed a situation like that happening to another person?

If you think this is a common situation, how would you avoid it or go through it?

EDIT: After many negative comments accusing me of "vanity", "can't stand if I'm wrong" and many other nonsense which is not even mentioned in this post in the first place:

I've learned A LOT of being wrong, I'm asking constant feedback to everyone, always trying to see where I failed and not even afraid of asking my superior for help or advice, how else could I have learned anything if I were otherwise? and honestly: that's not the point of this post, so stop mentioning it when I never spoke about it.

I'm talking about lack of respect, demotivation and superior attitude of other colleagues or bosses towards the employees, about your own company slowing you down without any valid reason or logic when meanwhile you're doing great things by your own. This is not about being right or wrong.

Check my article about why quitting a job to see what real situations I've faced if interested personally.

EDIT2: Thank you for everyone who commented this post. I've made a recopilation of the best advices you gave me here.

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helleworld_ profile

Desiré 👩‍🎓👩‍🏫


Create and connect. She/her. Worked in Smart City development for the European Union. Instructor in LinkedIn Learning.


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This is a common problem, unfortunately. I'm a self-taught developer, now a Senior, and I've experienced this type of attitude throughout my 6-year career.

The best thing I did is to keep moving companies until I found one that didn't have this culture.

Edit: For anyone that see's the comment from @johnkievlan below, and is second-guessing themselves, don't. Either, they are a troll looking to get a reaction or are one of the people that create such toxic environments.

I'd rather have a Junior, with no experience, over a supposed "Senior" with such a toxic attitude.


Thank you for your response, Si.

I've been told to "stand" this kind of attitude and endure, I'm happy to know that my "let's jump from company-to-company until I'm comfortable" idea wasn't wrong after all.


DO NOT "stand" for this type of attitude. I'd be very surprised if this is the only toxic thing about the culture at a company that has this view, and I wouldn't want to stay around long enough to see more.

I've worked in a variety of companies throughout my career (development and otherwise), with people of all ages, and a person's ability is not measured by their age.

I have personally been managed by people who are 10/20 years my senior but, currently, my manager AND my tech lead are both younger than me and I can honestly say I'm in the best team I've ever been in.


Hey Desiré,

It seems, since my original comment, your post has got a lot of attention. From what I can see, most of them are positive and encouraging.

Unfortunately, I have also read some comments that are disgusting. I know you'll know which ones I'm referring to. Just ignore them. Carry on as you are, and don't allow these trolls to make you believe you are the problem.

You deserve a non-toxic culture, no matter what stage you are at.

Thank you again Si, indeed I think this post caught the attention of some trolls, but it's worthless giving them even the smallest spark of attention...

Thank you for your kind words, have a nice day!

It's worthless giving them even the smallest spark of attention

Yep. The best way to deal with these types of people is to just ignore them, that will annoy them more than anything else.

Thank you for your kind words, have a nice day!

You too.


Exactly what I was going to say too.
I switched companies twice in a 6 month period but now I'm very content with my situation.
It may come down to how low the self-respect and expected respect-from-company ratio you're willing to tolerate, but I believe always wanting more yet being humble enough to never stop researching and studying your field to be the optimal mindset.

If you find yourself miserable, do switch(with considerations of the job market).

Hope you make the right choice my good friend :)



Listen to what Dr. Drew has to say on this.

Sloan, the sloth mascot Comment marked as low quality/non-constructive by the community View code of conduct

6 years is barely past junior level. You're mid-level. It doesn't matter if someone gave you a Senior title -- that just means they don't know what a Senior developer is.

Good rule of thumb:

1-5 years? Junior.

6-15 years? Mid-level. Maybe. If you're pretty decent.

15+ years? Senior, if you're actually good, which you may not be.


You're the type of person this industry doesn't need.

I was going to write a rather angry response, but I'm not even going to lower myself to your level. My current role is my third job with a senior title. That means three companies have thought I'm worth the title, and the money that comes with it.

Thankfully, your opinion means nothing to me and I'm still getting paid so 🤷‍♂️


You sound exactly like the people OP is talking about.

Capability is not a result of time.


I disagree with this - I also am of the opinion that seniority is much more intangible than the number of years you've spent in a field.

I'm so interested in defining seniority in SWE-land, that I started a podcast to talk with some of the most experienced people I could find about building and defining seniority. It turns out that very few of the people I met quantify seniority in terms of time; experiences are far more important than years spent at the keyboard.

Dan Abramov isn't in his thirties yet, but I'd suppose he has more "seniority" than the vast majority of software developers ever achieve.

Personally, I take a bit of offense at your rubric for determining seniority, but you're entitled to your opinion. Though, I don't see what purpose it serves beyond gatekeeping.

Honestly though, job titles are frequently meaningless and vary vastly between organizations. Looking to far into them is usually a bad idea, in my experience.

Edit: clarification, sorry for typos, etc on mobile. 🙃


In my opinion you can easily become a "senior" regarding a narrow, specialized subject in a limited amount of time.

I've always disliked the concept of these tiers of titles though. It doesn't say anything about your focus: Are you broadly acquainted with many subjects, or highly specialized in one? Are your specializations still relevant and useful?

And flexibility is important as well: I've met many "seniors" whose minds were completely stuck in one paradigm, unwilling to admit that all the little rules they learned over the years might be obsolete.

I personally prefer to speak about specializations rather than just seniority.

What has a person focused on in the last few years, and what have they studied recently? How does that person's focus area and eagerness to innovate connect with the needs of the company?


Who's rule of thumb is this? You are trying to quantify the unquantifiable. There is no timeline for developers like this nor any way to gauge someone's ability off of time alone. Good luck with your long journey to senior dev though! Might never be one with this attitude though, not very senior dev like.


The number of years you've spent programming does not make you a senior. It is what you have done within those years that really matter. You may think you are a senior being a programmer for 15+ years and someone who had just programmed for barely 3 years can write as much (maybe better) programs than you can and could be better than you at using modern technologies (which is what some companies need).

IMO, exposure has to do with how well you grow over time, if you have a mentor while starting out in programming, chances are that you will be guided toward a path that the mentor knows would be best for you and make you garner as much experience there as possible, use as many tools & tech as possible, expose you to collaboration and teamwork skills.

Never look down on someone just because they seem young & self-taught or they don't have certain years of experience in the industry.


Honestly, at 23 you are not likely to be viewed as "senior" experience. Most likely you aren't but anything is possible. "Good" and "senior" are not the same thing, however. I would wager that there is a level of professional maturity gained through experience that is not available at 23 years of age (in my experience, I'm 43 and have been a developer for 22 years) but I would not generalize about anyone as I don't know the OP.

Additionally, many people think "senior" involves programming skills only. It does only in part. If you know how to do the work and do it well then that may be half the battle at best. Surviving in the professional world requires good soft skills - typically only gained through experience - more than anything else. I'm sure a monkey could be taught to develop but to be a solid resource is another issue. Of course, architecture and design skills come into play, too.

That said, nobody should be disrespected anywhere. I would quietly start looking for a new job.


It's rather telling that johnkievlan, simply pointing out that you may not be anything other than "junior" with less than 5 years experience, is viewed as "non-constructive".

Doesn't that itself point to something? That giving viewpoints which might not be nice to hear but which may also be the truth, is something deserving of an "angry response" or downvoting?

Being considered anything other than junior, when only three years in to a career and aged 23 seems like something that should really just be accepted.

And if my colleagues don't appear to be giving me respect that I feel I deserve then maybe I would be better off elsewhere. But maybe as well I should consider that I might just be doing something wrong, expecting too much, or maybe under-valuing others I work with?


Seriously dude! 6-15 mid-level? Are you telling about yourself?


Boy... What a small world you are living in


This varies with country. If you are in a country where a developer with 15 years experience is not the norm, do you junk the senior title? That's not how it works.


I would recommend not looking for outside validation for the work you do. It is enough that you are doing honest work and you should only look from within for validation as you know best whether you're doing good work or not.


Hello Arthur, thank you for your response.

Indeed! I'm not saying I search validation, I mean I literally loose lots of opportunities because my bosses/colleagues/company thinks I'm less qualified than I am and don't recognize my work.

So it's not really about how others see me or my work, but how can I prevent or stop them of treating me as if I know nothing!


Can I suggest, if you're not getting due respect from your work colleagues, that you do things like speak at user groups and conventions, create and demo stuff that you're enthusiastic about outside work, and show off your skills. If your colleagues see it, and see other people giving you kudos, it might wake them up to their crappy attitude - and if not, you'll have raised your own visibility in the tech community to the point where headhunters might well come looking for you, to get you to join another company for more money.
In any case, it's pretty much best practice these days to change jobs every 2-3 years, so you don't get stagnant.

Hello, Matt!

Totally agree. Actually - it's what I've been doing, and I've received lots of proposals and attention, even though because of other personal reasons I couldn't accept them.

Still, I'm wondering how even after you're seeing someone that works for/with you is doing 'great' things, you still treat them as if they were a zero? I've been in a really unrealistic situations because of this.

I totally think there must be other private reasons to get this kind of attitude towards someone and they don't even care if you're good or successful, they'll keep on with that attitude.

By all means, build your brand and visibility, but you don't have to prove yourself to assholes. Just don't work with them. If you need a new job I'm happy to help you search.

Agreed. Also, bad treatment may the result of jealousy and an indicator that the person receiving bad treatment is doing a great job


Respect and decency != Validation.

Where was OP talking about validation?


First of all it's really unfortunate that you had this kind of experience. Yeah. It happens. I am also going through the same situation. I think it all depends upon the company culture. Some have a toxic and aristocratic culture. In my opinion, they are fearful of the young talent and they see it as a threat to their positions. So, my advice is to find a good company which I am personally doing as well. I hope we both get better jobs with good culture soon.


Saeed, thank you so much for your response.

It's truly sad we're in the same situation, but of course it can be as you say and the key is probably finding a company that isn't afraid of young talent. I wish luck to both of us, let's find a good new path :)


To change culture, you need to replace 30% of workforce, or work hard maybe years to change engrained behaviours. You're probably better off talking to your boss or bosses boss about these issues, maybe drop some external hints to help then see their dysfunctions, then move on.


Dear Desire’

I am a CTO for an international software company. I have taken time out of my schedule to write this for you as it is something I have experienced time and time again and is a concern for me.

I am double your age and manage teams of engineers and designers. Some have Ph.D.’s others have no degrees. Some have education and others are self-thought. I understand the value of people within our organization. Without knowing both sides of this story, what you are describing appears to be a cultural fit issue. My reason for saying this is that if it were to do with your hard-skills, and your work was not up to scratch, they would have let you know by now.

Being young, your soft-skills are still developing so my best advice is to communicate this with them effectively. It’s really a three-step process depending on the organizational structure.

  1. Approach the person or persons at an appropriate time (timing is everything, your message needs to be impactful so pick a good time to speak to them) and tell them how you feel. Many people’s personalities don’t often see wrong in what they are doing until its highlighted and often when it is, it’s kind of embarrassing for them. You are essentially highlighting a personality character flaw.

  2. Failing this, approach their managers describing your problem as unbiasedly as possible to mediate.

  3. If still unresolved, approach the CTO / CEO.

With each meeting, ensure you follow this up with an email to the party/parties to solidify your message. It also gives you proof and is good for record-keeping.

Sometimes people fall out of line and need corrective disciplining. As a CTO, I encourage office banter to happen as it’s a means of team bonding and builds character, but not at the expense of professionalism. Once a boundary has been crossed, this is a red flag for me and action needs to be taken.

Don’t be afraid to speak up because only through communication can things be resolved. There is a reason why you are writing this message else you would have resigned already. Probably you are happy with your work, the projects you are getting and perhaps even have some colleagues there you view as friends. Knowing this, the advice I have given here is the correct process to follow to reach results.

If after time the problem remains unresolved, then it’s time to consider moving along. There is nothing worst then being in a firm where the cultural fit does not match with you. If management allows this behavior to occur then they are to blame, not you! In this case, they are not a good fit for you. A safe and happy working environment where you can thrive and spread your wings is essential personal growth and career development. Once it reaches this point, you would be wise to let the CTO/CEO know your reason for your resignation. Remember, they are learning too.

I hope my advice helps you become the person you want to be. Don’t be influenced by negative thoughts where doubt creeps in but rather continue in your pursuit of happiness and fulfillment. Life is short, follow your path. It will lead to something wonderful.


Move past it or drown in it.

My path is self-taught > freelance > college > own business (product dev + freelance consulting) > university > hit €16k/mo in passive income w/ own product > continue mix of product dev & consulting.

I started coding at 9, I'm 28 now. Always had at least one person complain or gatekeep. Still have that today.

It won't end, because the problem isn't that you lack any capacities.

The problem is emotional and political.

Even if you'd be a renowned personal consultant of world leaders with great success, people who disagree with their politics enough will bend the truth to convince themselves that you can't possibly be any good. To do so would be to admit that their (self-invented) "opponent" can be right and make good decisions, which goes against black/white "us vs them" thinking.

That's politics.

The same happens on an emotional level with their personal beliefs: Admitting your skills are good starts with admitting that you grew faster in your field than they did at that age. They might fear they missed out, or were "slower". They make the mistake of thinking lives need to be compared.

One of the best devs I've ever met was a 13-year old that I met when I was 16. We're no longer in touch, but I'm sure his life wasn't easy. It already wasn't at 13.

My advice: C'est la vie. Move away from those who pull you down, move towards those who support you unconditionally.

You can't prevent others making mistakes, but that doesn't mean you have to make one by staying in an environment that holds you back.

(Unconditionally is a key word. If it's conditional, they won't allow unrestrained personal development.)


My two cents: I do not think it is because of being self-taught, at least not in Barcelona, I do believe is mostly because we have lots of companies with shitty management in this city.

Just search for a startup or startup-like company that are more preoccupied with the quality of your work and character and does not have time for stupid office politics and ego plays.


We have a general problem that companies search for a person that can do the job of at least 3 more roles apart of their role. Isn't that a more persistent problem in start-ups because the lack of general resources? Or is it better? What is your experience?



Startups can be far worse than established companies because of lack of resources, external pressures, uncertainty, immaturity, etc etc etc

I would look for established companies that people you admire recommend for good reasons (not ping pong + food).

Barcelona may be a tough tech scene but there are good companies everywhere. Happy to share more notes about evaluating company culture if it would help.

True, they can be far worse but they can be rewarding too. Especially if they end up being a successful establishment. High risk High returns.

In my experience. I have had more opportunities to show what I know and learn new skills at start-ups. The lack of resources is what provides these opportunities if you're willing to continually self teach and anticipate a need.


Usually yes, you would do a lot of different things on a startup but you will be recognized for it and valued while at the same time learning and improving as a professional a lot.

Not everyone have the mindset required to work on a startup but I definitely recommend trying it out.


When you've worked at enough places, you'll realize that some companies/people are just not worth working for/with. So that's my advice, keep upgrading your skills and looking for new jobs until you find an environment that you like.


No one should ever be ignored (and much less disrespected!) no matter if they are junior or senior. Everyone's ideas deserve to be heard and respected. It's important to remember that it's not your fault, you don't need to be more assertive, or fight to be respected (if you did, they would probably say you are too agressive or stuff like that anyway). It's their fault. In my experience it's really hard to change a company's culture by yourself, so I agree with the rest of the comments, the best you can do is keep looking for better places to work at. It's not always easy but 💪


Núria! Thank you so much for your response 😉!

You're totally right. Actually there was one time I tried to 'fight' them. The next day I was humiliated in front of the whole team saying "I had an unprofessional attitude and I couldn't be like that in a job". Funny thing, I just said "you can't put more than 15 things in the same menu, you will make the user go crazy". So yes, totally.

Thank you for your kind words, it's not easy but it'll be worth I'm sure 😁


I face this problem everyday being a UI developer, especially from people who have never worked in UI. What is more disheartening is posts/memes bashing HTML/CSS on programming/development centric platforms. Every technology has its uses, yes you cant hack NASA using HTML in same way you cant make UI using MySQL. Its sad that many so-called Senior developers disrespect a technology so much despite it being used everywhere.


If you like your job, you don't have to leave. It's not your fault.

Document it. With dates, names. Just in case anyone questions you about it.

Ask a senior manager if you can start a workplace program -- either a workplace discrimination training program, or a women in tech group. They may ask why or you may mention you feel targeted and would like people to be more aware of their biases.

Find a mentor who believes in you and can back you up.

Good luck!


Hi Michael, thank you so much for your response!

I never thought about it, but you're totally right. It reminds me of an advice I was given when I started my career: "never pick up calls. Tell everyone to email you with their needs, because if they say something wrong you'll have proofs".

Thank you for your honest words, I'll try to practice it!


For better or worse I have never seen anyone get respect by demanding it. Not once.

I have sometimes seen people get respect by proving they deserve it. Sometimes.

The only consistent way I've seen anyone get the respect of their peers - from "junior" to "director" - is reciprocity.

People respect the people who make them feel respected. They disrespect the people who don't. We are emotional creatures - not logical ones - and merit really doesn't come into it.

In fact, being 23 and even asking for more recognition - even though it sounds like you've totally earned it - probably makes people who have worked longer in a similar position feel devalued. They'll likely react by devaluing you (and they won't know that's why they're doing it).

It's not fair, it's not right, but... It is hackable.

Wherever you are currently - if you're still dealing with this - invest some time and effort in letting your co-workers know (whether they are over or under you) that you value their experience, skills and contributions. (And be genuine, if you don't actually value them then work on convincing yourself first).

I bet it won't be long before the same people who insist you're only junior start saying "You know, I know she's young, but she really deserves some recognition."


Your advice is a little strange given she never asked to be senior and nowhere did it mention she doesn't show respect or recognition to her co-workers. What are you basing your prescription on?

You know what's worse than being at an intermediate level? Baseless assumption and projecting. Even worse than that is giving advice based on assumption and projecting.


She mentions asking to be senior in the post about Smart City jobs that she links to in this one. It sounds like she was not only told "no" but was told "no" in a very public and humiliating way - which is awful. I don't blame her a bit for leaving that situation.

I don't believe I said anywhere that she doesn't show respect or recognition to her co-workers. I have no idea what her relationship with her co-workers is like. Sorry if I implied that I did.

I'm sharing what I know from experience does/doesn't work when cultivating respectful relationships with co-workers. That's the best way I can help: give my best advice. If she's already been following it then it can't hurt to hear it again - and if it's a new way to think about it then I've been helpful.

Most of the comments I saw - both positive or negative - have focused on merit (whether someone does/doesn't deserve respect). I thought it would be useful to point out the emotional (and less rational) side of things.

(Edit: I checked the Smart City link again to make sure I wasn't mis-remembering. Here's what she says:

"I didn't quitted because I disliked my job, I quitted because I felt I was working too much for a "junior programmer" and without any recognition. I was denied many petitions and humiliated in front of my colleagues many times."

I assumed the "petitions" mentioned were requests to not be labeled "junior programmer". To your point that doesn't mean she was specifically asking to be labeled "senior". I'll edit my original comment.

And to make myself exceptionally clear - if she was asking to be "senior", or any other specific title - I'm not saying it was wrong to do so. Just trying to point out that it might contribute to a subconscious bias from people who have been in the industry longer. That bias isn't something we should accept or encourage - but it is something we can be aware of and manage.)

Sorry but you're misunderstanding and just guessing what my petitions are, I still don't know why people in comments are talking about senior or junior when I never said anything about it.

My "petitions" were more formation, a flexible schedule and a pay rise according to the responsabilities I had, responsabilities that weren't appropiate for a junior title.

Thank you for your response and have a nice day.


Your workplace is toxic, and unless you have a few colleagues who are on your side, you should just leave.

If you surround yourself with like minded people, you will get positive feedback, even if it doesnʼt come from your immediate colleagues. It will help a lot, and if you can stay positive despite all the toxicity around you, your environment will change; positivity is contagious.

Even if you have some people with you, you might have no luck turning things to a positive. If you can convince a few people to leave the company together with you, it will have a strong message to management. Story time:

I was working for the local division of a Hungarian company. We were treated badly, worked much harder than we should had, and didnʼt get a raise for years. After negotiating for weeks without the smallest success, about 40 of us left the company. We all mentioned the same reasons during our exit talks. Few months later we heard from people who stayed that they are treated much better in a lot of ways, salary raise included. Even though my ex boss doesnʼt seem to recognise me on the street to this day (it was more than 10 years ago), iʼm glad we could do this for those people even if we werenʼt there to enjoy.

I had about 8 jobs since then, and now iʼm a CTO of a company that turned profitable without serious external (VC) money. We all respect each other, most of us even treating each other as friends, not just colleagues. But i truly needed all the bad experiences so now i know how to build a successful and emotionally healthy organisation.

Be brave to change. It will turn to better.


Thank you for your words, Gergely.

Your honesty and story are both inspiring to me. I indeed recognise this kind of attitude as toxic and "not normal", even though I haven't been in that many companies.

I've always felt that people saying "just endure and stay" are wrong. If you feel you're not comfortable and that the situation won't change leaving seems the best option for me. As you say, if you're followed by others who feel the same way, it can turn out better.

I'll follow your advice, thank you so much for sharing this very pesonal experience, all the best in your career as CTO!


It sounds like you are working in a very toxic environment with a lot of people who are projecting their own misery and insecurities onto you. I definitely recognize the behaviour you are describing and I have experienced it myself - btw I am also a female intermediate developer with about 3 years at my current company. I think it's no secret that there is a pattern of women being undervalued and or silenced in the workplace in general, whether intentional or not, but interestingly I have only ever experienced this kind of attitude from outside of the engineering department. Predictably, almost all my dev colleagues are male, but I have always found every single one of them to be incredibly supportive, respectful and encouraging. I have however been treated 'like an idiot', over-explained incorrect information or straight up ignored by a lot of male co workers outside of the department or in management. The common theme is it's usually those who are either trying desperately to migrate into a dev role but lack the skills, or have long since left behind any technical work in favor of a more administrative position. I therefore have a suspicion that the root cause of this kind of disrespect comes from a place of fear or feeling threatened - by belittling someone and painting them as inexperienced, pointing out how they are 'junior' etc, they believe they can boost the public perception of their own expertise.
Obviously it's objectively very unprofessional and douchey to act like this, but in a toxic environment of like minded people they will get away with it. I recommend, like others have, looking for a company with a more healthy culture of encouragement and positive feedback. If you stay in a toxic work culture that doesn't make you feel validated it can end up severely affecting your everyday happiness and no one should have to put up with that at work. I can tell that you are not an arrogant person who overestimates themselves from the way you phrased this post, but exhibits of such assholes can be seen in a few of the comments here.
I hope your situation improves - just remember the vast majority of good engineers are supportive and kind and if someone feels the need to talk down to you and tell you your opinions are 'crap', that's a 'them' problem.


Thank you so much for your kind and supportive words!

As seeing your perspective and experience I can say you're totally right. I've been thinking it was my fault somehow, that maybe I couldn't get where I wanted because I wasn't good enough and everyone was making me go slower when by myself I was achieving great things (giving conferences, teaching, being a LinkedIn instructor...), but now that you've exposed it like that I definitely can see it crystal clear.

We won't ever be able to keep the good vibes with everyone, specially with those that, as females or just because they see us as a threat, will try to let us down and demotivate us...

Thank you again and have a really nice day.


I have a bachelor's degree, but there have been developers who were pretty nasty to me. At the very least, they talk(ed) down to me. I am actually in the midst of writing an article about toxic developers. It's a real issue in the industry.


Sorry for your experience, I see toxic devs are just everywhere and in every shape and form... I'm willing to read that article, hope it comes out pretty soon!


Thanks! I will keep you posted once I've written it. My opinion on toxic is going to cast a wider net than people simple being mean. I mean, I've worked places where I felt invisible. I think if it bothers you, find a nice podcast or some good songs to listen to and enjoy the lack of attention you get. As per people treating you rudely, I'd say as long as you were at your current job for a year or better, you technically don't have to deal with it anymore. Some place will treat you right. Remember: you will always stand to make more money finding a new job than at your current. Use their disdain toward you to fuel your move onto bigger and better things. And if you really love the tech, that's understandable, but you might love the tech at another company, better.


Hi Desiré, I deeply sympathize with your situation. Just to put things in perspective: I'm male, 32 years old, graduated top of my class at the age of 21, have several certifications, over a decade of professional experience, my fair share of open source contributions, as well as several keynotes under my belt. I often receive dozens of contacts from recruiters in a single day. In many ways I have the kind of CV that is very marketable. Still, I can mention more than one team / company where people where very dismissive about my ideas, and sometimes plain rude too my face (from junior team members telling that they were too busy to waste their time giving me a hand, to managers telling other team members that "I keep trying to save the World with insignificant task X"). Honestly, the most dismissive teams always have the worst codebase, chaotic support schedules and no process. The most dismissive teams are often doomed and just gave up trying. The problem is not your age, gender or the fact that you are self-taught. Really, It's not you, it's them. You know what? It's a seller's market. I'll echo what everyone else is saying. Focus on landing your next job and make sure that it comes with at least a 20% raise. There are better companies around, you may have to hop jobs, maybe one, maybe 10, maybe 100 times but eventually you will find a place where you'll fit in. And if you can't find a great job, you will have enough experience to create your own. Don't let anyone get to you. Stay confident and take action (believe me, I had my fair share of self doubt over the years). As Steve Jobs once said: Stay hungry, stay foolish.


OP posts about being disrespected and ignored at work, gets disrespected and ignored in post 😂

Way to go community 🙃

OP, I hope you ignore every negative reply here, anyone victim-blaming doesn't deserve to give 'advice' or their opinion.


I won't say I wasn't expecting this, however it's both ironical and at the same time we're discovering that there are lots of people in disguise in this community that have a like on disrespecting or ignoring coworkers.

Thank you again for your kind words, Steve! :)


Yeah it surprised me too, but if you get anything else from this thread at least you know it's not you - some people just suck. The other thing I learned is that this is not a community you can lean on for support (yet) so I hope you have that somewhere. If you don't I'm happy to help find one.


I was thinking in that and I want to know if there is a name for that, but I call that micro-mobbing. It's a common bad practice in the world of work and I can see a bad legacy from the era of a world dominated of monarchies; The king to rule and lead needed to demonstrate that not only his "superiority" but also the inferiority of the rest of the people. Today we can see this kind of behaviour in every kind of job. The employer needs demonstrate the inferiority of his/her employee to avoid a rise in price of the cost of workforce. The easy way to achieve that is playing with the self esteem of the worker. Exactly how the monarchy old world played with the image of the native Americans or Africans.


Sir I junior to you by age and profession but still I want to suggest you that just don't give a fuck about this people and carry on with ur life
Once you get a better opportunity just switch to another company with a much better work culture where you will get respect.


I've changed 6 companies for 2 years. For many reasons, most of them it's corporate culture and disrespect to myself from CEO side. It's more about wrong choice when you're looking for new challenges at new companies, and I also think that mindset is work here to. Change your own vision of yourself, and people will start seen your like a completly another guy.


Leave and move to a different company. I've seen this in many places, seniors act like they own you. Horrible work life balance will make you lose interest even in things you're good at, you'll start feeling like "what's the point", which I think is very scary for someone's career.


It is the zeitgeist we are living in. If the job hopping and freelancing is the new normal that do not surprise me.
I think you are a midfield player, but end up in jobs with position of goal keeper or similar.
Your job could be a designer in a marketing department. Marketing girls and sales boys would be all around you. That would give you good feelings.

Being not liquid enough after 3 years in a environment indicates that you have to deal with incapable people.
It might go well for a while there, but they will eventually stuck.

As the zeitgeist and place requires, be a predator. Disrespect and ignorance does not hurt a warrior.


I'm going through this exact same thing - I'm also getting this disrespect, whilst also detecting insecure people on the team. For example whenever I suggest a better/quicker way of doing something in a really low-key polite way, it's like others hear me saying "you're doing this wrong."

These companies have flat out refused to implement best practices I've suggested, and they're not really even my suggestions, it's basic stuff like using story points for user stories so that we can deploy on time, wanting to use E2E testing, using Docker to get environment parity, investing in a device testing suite or Browserstack to fix all the responsive bugs from a mobile-last design approach.

I've also never had a complaint about my code quality, or work ethic, and as long as the deadline is a possible I always hit it - it just seems to be insecurity to me. I think I get singled out as a trouble maker for being a positive disruptor, and having professional boundaries, i.e. I will take my hour lunch break to ensure I'm not making silly mistakes from tiredness, and I dislike presenteeism, as I'd rather spend those extra hours studying so I can learn to do the next set of tasks quicker and with better tooling for example. This is seen as a big black mark against my name, whereas GOOD companies I've worked for have encouraged it and it's been the norm across the team.

I agree the best way is to keep moving around until you find somewhere, I've worked for some great teams with no ego, and I continue to hope there are others out there like that. Thank you for this article I feel less alone, best of luck to you in your search!


Helle :D

The most important thing is being happy in what you do. Maybe your drive is bigger then the box you're currently in. Nothing wrong in finding a bigger box.

Some people are lost, wrapped up in elitism. They're not going to want to give away their precious ego feeding credit to you. But if you feel inclined try giving their ego a little stroke sometime, chances are they'll start offering instead of taking.

Loves and "hugs" from a dim witted optimist.


Desire` do not despair, and ignore those who seek to bring you down whether through ignorance or chauvinism. I truly feel your pain but unfortunately given your age I have to say that you may have to endure a bit more - its human nature to see your age and assume that your experience is 'less than'.

Be strong; find colleagues who DO support you, whether in your workplace or in the larger world. @mollystruve is one person I admire for her ongoing support for the challenges of newbies and women in tech and you will find others. There are also groups you can find on Twitter, etc who can be a support system. I'll volunteer to be a friendly ear as well.

Unfortunately for many people, (and it seems you are one) whose early career is like high school - you just have go through it. Take a breath, belive in yourself - you will get through this with the gift of some wisdom to help others in the future.


Thank you Poonam, I loved your metaphor.

Please you too, keep up the great work and don't give up. In case you find it necessary please expand your area and search a job in another country... You'll be amazed of the opportunities that you may have, big hugs from Barcelona!


I would say from my experience, looking for others to respect us is a wrong expectation !!! It's a kind of harming ourself ... No one knows us better than ourself.. If we respect ourself and give importance to our own thoughts, that's a huge honour.. Because, we know our potential in best way so that we don't look for others to respect us. If we are waiting for others, we've to keep look for others forever. I think this is waste of time....


Well Mohammed that's exactly why I'm doing this post, because I'm aware of my potential but still others are stepping on me and trying to slow me down.

It's not about asking for respect, it's more about how to deal with a total disrespectful attitude towards you for no reason and that's affecting your career.


I agree to you and I know you're potential and that's why being here. But still I insist no one can treat us disrespectful unless and until if you allow !!! May be you can say unrecognised at some time. If you feel that way try to grab their attention towards you. If you still feel the same way, you may try to make them understand that any human must treated respectfully. If you still feel they are not doing good for you... Please move ahead and find your peaceful place. But these kind of people everywhere... So we can't keep move. Just ignore them but still respect them and try to concentrate on your improvement and your well being... This is my own experience and not just comments.. I moved out of that project from dominated character of a manager... That's their attitude.. Just for the shake we can't allow anybody to pollute us. Finally, it's our wipp power to grab their positive attention...

But still I insist no one can treat us disrespectful unless and until if you allow

Well this is absolutely not true... Sorry to say but people can step on you and treat you like they want to, specially if this person is a superior role than yours.

There's nothing much to do except changing your team or job...


No other way than to switch company. This kind of attitude is prevailing in the tech industry where everyone thinks that they are the best and don't pay any attention to others. I also suffered from the same problem in my first company and decided to quit my job. looking back now, that was the best decision i ever made as i'm very happy in my recent company. Self respect is the most important thing. But still one cannot expect a lot of attention if working for a big company. Have a great day.


I think based what you have told it is really hard to say what are the actual problems. For example:

I've been thinking why could that be, since my work was good and never had complaints from the clients or my bosses.

There is little indication of what good actually means.

It really could be anything, it could be your workplace is toxic, could be your work might actually be not good enough to earn their respect, could be anything.

Don't get me wrong, I am definitely not trying to discredit you. I think it will be more helpful to tell a little bit more about your work, what you do daily, what you know and what people you deal with so that we can give you more meaningful suggestion.


Companies don't really know what is the actual value that is provided by their employees.

so they often use a proxy to evaluate how much an employees opinion is to be respected : who has the highest pay?

developers are typically pay less that they could earn, so you can see what happens next


I have faced alot of times like this. people underestimates the person because of dress.Because that idiotic people thought dress code is the knowledge of person.They even dono simple persons are the great persons and never comparable with us.So better avoid those kind of people.Thinking about them is worthless.Regarding our knowledge we know what we are so why should we prove for others because we already knows that we are better than them.Then why should we worry about them.if we take it heart then we feel insulted ,if we take it with our mind just thing dogs are shouting in outside.🙂


I guess you are not alone. This is the case not just in IT but the outside world too. Sometimes you don't need someone to respect you if they don't understand. You know what you are so just go with it. Certain things are not worth your attention. So be on your way and do what you rejoice.


Use your smart phone. Record (Audio and Video)everything during abusing words. Which insulting you even you doing your good job. File the case for mental torture and Harassment during work. These companies and such people will automatically starts good behave with everyone with this fear.


100% agree but first check if your country allows you to legally do this without the other person consent. In my country if I record someone I might have to face legal repercussions. Like someone suggested in a previous thread, keep track of all e-mails since they are incorruptible proof when someone tries to prove you wrong. If you can, limit your interactions to e-mails most of the time. Be prepared for your superior to ignore that evidence. This happened to me once, since it's easier for them for a person to quit their job than for them to fire a toxic person and pay. Final advice, just look for another job and avoid places where you are the youngest. It's very difficult to be taken seriously when everyone is at least 10-15 years older or when everyday someone quits. Those are red flags meaning most people don't stick around...


That's the culture of most IT compaies and huge MNCs, I have been through that and ended up quitting my current job. My advise just keep climbing, keep learning, growing and adapting. Since success will always bring you respect. If you keep working harder than the people who just know how to undermine others you will end up above them one day or another. Just remember this experience you had and make sure you don't end up like them, treat you're juniors with respect no matter how high up the ladder you are.


Do not let it affect you too much. Just be yourself. Be confident on what you do, be open to new learnings and experiences and
go explore new opportunities out there. Find a team that knows how to respect their own teammates, that is willing to push you up, listen to your opinions and ideas and help you develop your skills regardless of the hierarchy. A great team would acknowledge each members' strength and weaknesses and from there will help each other out. This might be too ideal but eventually you will find that work place where you can have your inner peace. Take it as an experience. It's not always a smooth road and sometimes reality can be too harsh. But in the end, it doesn't really matter. Just keep coding :)


Been in the tech business for over 25 years. This happens to all of us. At one company you are treated as a moron. At another company you are a hero. Same person, same skills. The difference is that one company has a toxic work environment, while the other company treats you with respect. My friends and I refer to these situations as the Kobayashi Maru. The Kobayashi Maru is a training exercise in the Star Trek universe designed to test the character of Starfleet Academy cadets in a no-win scenario. I usually abandon ship.


Thank you for your response, Paul.

I've gotta say your metaphor was incredibly accurate, I hope you won't mind if I start referring to the situation by the same name, I feel there's no better name and context for it.

So right, the same person can be the zero or the hero, but only depending on where you can shine, or even if you're allowed to shine.


I've come across that behavior a lot. In fact, after 6 years of working for different companies (including as a consultant where I worked with different clients), the job I started summer 2019 is the first one where this hasn't happened yet and I'm given a lot of trust and responsibility.

Honestly, my advice is that if you feel the lack of respect and bad attitude is becoming too toxic for you to do your job properly and stay sane and happy, start looking for a new job.

I've never been in a place that had a bad culture that improved (drastically) over time, no matter how many initiatives there were to improve it.

I have the same experience as some of the others - kept moving companies until I ended up at one where the culture is better. And it's sadly the best or only advice I have.


The truth is that with only three years experience and without formal education, you are extremely junior. So the first step is infact to realize that you have alot to learn and are not in anyway a specialist. Accepting criticism is a major part of any profession career as well. There is nothing wrong with being a junior person. At 23 you most certainly are just that. This is an exciting time where you can learn much from many people. Embrace it and leave the vanity at home.


I'm not a junior designer and I can tell you that toxicity is more common than you think. The best thing you can do is not take it too personal.

Since we all need to work (and eat and live), and sometimes jobs aren't ideal, I developed my own way to take the daily crap that comes sometimes with our work. In a few words: It's about Do you like it? I love it! attitude.

Just so you know (not for bragging) I've worked (in Barcelona) for brands like Seat, or Honda, as an Art director and cgi generalist, in the car industry, and yet I've found people questioning my knowledge and skills. And you know what? It just doesn't worth the effort to get angry, and believe me I was angry.

I'm 41 now, so it's not about that you are young. Some people don't worth the effort. Period.

The best thing you can do for yourself is look for places and people that value you as a person and as professional, and (Sorry for swearing) fuck off the rest.


This happened to me as well when I first started my career. Experienced people at the time were so impatient even to provide proper KT sessions and when I approached them with any follow-up questions, their attitude was just disgusting and in-turn they said to me that I did not focus during KT sessions. I was a fresher and IT world was very new to me and so was the application that I had to work on. So, I had to struggle in the initial days. Eventually, these people left the firm and I pledged myself that I will not treat any new-joiners the way that I was treated and I'm happy to say that I stood up to my word.


Hi Desiré

I've been in exactly this situation - sidelined and humiliated. It's incredibly hurtful. I never really understood how things went wrong in that job, but the only solution was to leave. It took me quite a few changes of jobs before I finally found a culture that supported me and suited my personality, and now I'm thriving.

So don't be disheartened. Keep looking for a company with the right cultural fit for you. Find out what you can about a company's culture and values before you apply, and during the interview.


Thank you, I've seen you've uploaded the picture. What makes you think I could not fix this in 30 seconds, too? Are you that narcissist?

It's awfully incredible how people like you just try and search for the smallest spark of mistake on someone else just to proof them wrong when there's nothing wrong here. Go ahead, it's just sad.

PS; At least thank you, I'll guess that the proportion looks bad in a laptod so I'll add the right query :)


Probably you found bad work groups. Two light book recommendations: Phoenix project, and The 5 dysfunctions of a team. At least one of those, and how non-male-signaling people can get treated in some workplaces are worth crying (and crying out loud!) about. The average worker is or wants to be blind to these issues. Challenge these, one step at a time. Find confidants and mentors to help your journey. You can do this. Nobody else can fix this for you.


Hello Desiré,
first of all, a due disclaimer, which you won't like to read (and I'd prefer not to write): the Dunning-Kruger effect is real, affects many of us and must be always taken into account when approaching new fields, technologies, and methodologies.
Once you've double-checked you are effectively good as you think you are (which I've no reason to doubt, especially considering what you say about your side-gigs), you should keep in mind a couple of things:

1) Women are discriminated in many fields, and IT is not an exception. Get used to it, while fighting to change it with your achievements.

2) Young age is generally perceived badly if you're good: you're a menace to people of your age, whom you're in direct competition with, and a shame to many elders, showing them they're not as good as you despite their years of work.

3) Soft skills are FUNDAMENTALS as hard skills. Being able to communicate ideas, advancements, proof of concepts, as well as problems, pitfalls, dangers is something extremely important in a world where your brain cannot communicate directly with the brain of others but needs to pass through your body - and theirs.
At 23, if you're not a natural, you're likely failing badly at that.
You should start to study how to talk, what to say, how to gesture (body language is critical to basically everything in life), etcetera.
Unattended situations will still take you by surprise, but you'll react faster, and better.

Soft skills also comprise being able to craft a good resume, stand out in (the psychological parts of) interviews, and negotiate a proper salary.
It doesn't matter how good you are if you can't get the job to demonstrate it, or if you take the job but are not able to take the credits for it or dodge the bullets when it's not your fault.

ALL OF THIS SAID: if you've been disrespected, it's time to find another job immediately. If there's a lack of respect, that's a toxic environment, and you need to run from it ASAP.

Good luck for your future, and go on with your side-gigs, they're terrific at improving soft skills like writing, talking and planning.

Hope that helps


I was thinking in that and I want to know if there is a name for it, but I call that micro-mobbing. It's a common bad practice in the world of work and I can see a bad legacy from the era of a world dominated for monarchies; The king to rule and lead needed to demonstrate not only his "superiority" but also the inferiority of the rest of the people. Today we can see this kind of behaviour in every kind of job. The employer needs demonstrate the inferiority of his/her employee to avoid a rise in price of the cost of workforce. The easy way to achieve that is playing with the self esteem of the worker. Exactly how the monarchy old world played with the image of the native Americans or Africans.


Go to linkedin and turn on avalable indicator. Your job hunt starts now.


I like to use Byron Katie's "The Work" with thoughts since I've found that in reality, situations are never truly the things that upset. me. Rather, it is the thought about the situation that does it instead.

Every. Single. Time.

If I'm thinking things like this:

No one respects me. People should respect me.

I do some self inquiry. Do I know this to be absolutely true?

If I search myself, I always find these thoughts are NEVER true.

I look for a stress free reason to keep the thought. I NEVER find one. I then turn it around to things like these:

I should respect others.

I should respect me.

I then focus on these things and then do my best to drop the sad thoughts. Eventually, I find that I am very respected over time. I find that others respect me when I continuously do the right thing day after day. Now, it's never a guarantee and since this is something I can't control, it's better for me to focus on what I can control which is me respecting myself and me respecting others.

Really hope this helps someone. :-)


You confuse, the job with friendship, yeah maybe a lot of companies are "toxic" but you are paid as a worker, not a project manager, not a partner. If you wanna change the world, make your own, or just change company or country(city).

But to be direct with you, I think you should try to be a freelancer or make own business because after that you will word differently.

And about me, I change more than 4-6 jobs in 2 years, I was fired after the first few weeks, I was nervous every time, at every time when changing the job, was a better condition, more money.


Thank you for your answer Chill!

I'm just curious about 1 thing, where am I confusing job with friendship? 🤔

I think we all deserve to be treated well and with respect in a job, no matter what our role is.


Honestly, I'm a self taught developer who has never had this issue.

Granted - I'm a dude, so gender might be part of it. I'm older than you, so maybe age has something to do with it. I'm also American, and I can't speak to the developer culture in Spain.

What your describing reminds me a bit of light hazing. This is actually super common pretty much everywhere no matter your vocation. People are testing you to see if you can take some heat. There is tons of psychological research out there about how some behavior like this actually bonds peer groups together much tighter. It can sometimes shade into toxicity, and if it does you should leave , but most of the time it is harmless and actually essential to group cohesion and productivity.

It's really hard to get the balance right between epistemological humility and standing your ground when your right, but my experience is if you have something to say, it's worth saying, and you say it well , most people will listen. So maybe one of those 3 components is missing from your interactions. Development is competitive and being a little combative intellectually is quite helpful at establishing your street cred.

I don't know you, or your peers, or your situation. This is just an observation from a formerly awkward person who never got respect, and now gets it in spades.
... your mileage may vary.

BTW - if your a working Software Engineer at 23, your in good shape. In 5 years you'll be making 6 figures and laughing all the way to the bank. Your literally in the 10% already. I wish I was that smart when I was in my 20s.


This is common problem . This kind of behaviour in humans is common . They always consider themselves as a great person with large knowledge. Just ignore and Focus on your skills. Start Searching for a new company with good environment.


Tbh, these are attitudes and sentiments that women and poc have to deal with every day in all career paths. Applying some strategies that these populations use to your situation may be worth looking into.

Yes as others have suggested you can office hop until you find a good office but the thing that stood out to me the most in your post is all the accomplishments you've made but you don't consider yourself a senior. 🤔

It is true that there's always a chance that some troll will disrespect you regardless of your obvious talents, but in my book YOU YOURSELF also need to embrace your obvious talents. Why aren't you a senior? If you don't SEE yourself as a respectable figure and take yourself more seriously, carry yourself as someone who knows their own self worth, why would other people respect that?

Respect isn't something that any one person is owed because they did something that they think is great. It's something that a person earns and doing great work isn't good enough of an entry to earn it these days. Doing good work is the minimum possible requirement. You have to meet these trolls head on and make them respect you. Sometimes it's as simple as having a conversation with them about how rude and disrespectful you feel they are, and other times you outright have to put these people in their place and outsmart them.

For some reason everyone thinks they are entitled to respect, but sorry, that's not the case. You gotta go out there and get it, take it, exude it. It also helps if you truly respect your coworkers too, but again, that's just a small part of the puzzle.

Feel free to office jump and run away from the problem if it's just too big of a hurdle at your current office, but know that there's always a possibility that after you find the perfect office a new person will come along and muck up that great environment you found. You'll still need to figure out how to respect yourself at the highest level and to earn and/or take respect from others where it's due.