What Can You Do When Your Boss Behaves Badly?
Are you at the receiving end of a manager that behaves badly with you in office. Well, who isn’t?! Here is out guide to identifying harmful behavior patterns in your boss, and how to deal with them.
The Problem: Micromanagement
Having a micromanaging boss can be an extremely frustrating experience. Each and every thing you do will be scrutinized minutely, and you will often be told how things need to done, rather than leaving you to apply your creativity.
Try to find out which areas your boss is micromanaging your work. If you see any room for improving your own performance, do that first. Try to be pro-active with your work, and gain the confidence of your boss. If this does not help, have an off the records chat with an employee from some other team and try to gauge if micromanagement is prevalent throughout the organization. If it is not, it is time to have a discussion with your boss. Mention that your strengths lie in working independently for “x” number of hours in a day.
The Problem: Frequent Lying
Tolerating a lie is difficult in any situation, and especially in the professional environment when you boss lies to you routinely. The false information you get from your boss could be about new business ventures, company policies, job responsibilities or other employees of the company. There can be several reasons for such behavior, including insecurity and favoritism.
To ensure that your bosses’ lies do not land you into trouble, be vigilant at all times. Take down notes during meetings and get them acknowledged by him / her. Insist on getting all instructions in writing, and save all of your emails, just in case. Secondly, build a strong network of peers within the organization. When you receive any information from your boss, cross verify it with your network. In certain situations, it is also acceptable to verify the information with your manager’s boss.
The Problem: Active or Passive Aggression
Aggression comes in two flavors – active as well as passive. Symptoms of an actively aggressive boss are directly visible. You get yelled at frequently, your ideas are shot down without even being considered, and you get the overwhelming feeling that the only person whose opinion matters is your boss.
On the other hand, passively aggressive bosses will be much more indirect with their aggression. A typical behavior of a passive aggressive person is being sarcastic. This is because rather than discussing an issue with you assertively, your boss would hide behind the blanket of sarcasm. This can even extend to talking ill about behind your back you in front of your co-workers, or marking you down during your appraisals without ever discussing performance issues with you.
While dealing with an actively aggressive manager, you will need to discuss this issue with them when they are not in an aggressive mood. In a polite but assertive manner, tell them what type of behavior is unacceptable to you. If you do not notice any change in your boss’ behavior even after this conversation, report their behavior to their manager.
As for the passive aggressive type, it is difficult to judge their behavior patterns. The best way to deal with such behavior is to be proactive and constantly ask for feedback from your supervisor, Passive aggressive behavior is generally a matter of ego. You approaching them and asking for their feedback on your performance strokes their ego and makes them feel better.