What to Do When You Hate Your Boss

Having a bad boss hang over your work is like having a blizzard hang over your house—there is no escaping it, and it affects your outlook. In an article for Harvard Business Review, Manfred F. R. Kets de Vries shares five tips for handling this frustrating situation:

  • Practice empathy: Bad bosses’ behaviors are typically a result of pressures and demands from their own bosses. Be mindful of this and make a deliberate effort to better understand your boss. It can only have positive effects.
  • Consider your role: Be as honest as you can with yourself and decide if you are contributing to the issue in any way. (You probably are.) Likewise, be aware of “transference,” which is when your boss reminds you of someone you did not like in the past, and so you dump all that emotional baggage (probably unfairly) onto the boss.
  • Offer a chance to change: If your boss really is the problem, you need to ask to have a private, serious conversation with him or her about your concerns. Find a neutral ground to talk, like an eatery.
  • Organize a mutiny: If your boss is unreceptive to your concerns, then it is time to escalate to the black fist that is HR. But before you do this, make sure you have an airtight case—along with forms of documentation and testimonials if you can find them—illustrating how your boss is a serious problem. This is a risky strategy that can backfire, but sometimes it is necessary.
  • Wait out your boss or leave: If nothing has worked, then you can either try to wait for your boss to vacate his or her position, or you can leave. This is the end of the line.

You can view the original article here:

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