Some people are very fortunate to have a boss who is a joy and a delight to work with. However, ‘tricky’ or problem bosses can make life difficult for their employees.
It isn’t necessarily that they are bad people, it’s just that their management styles and skills are simply lacking in some way, and most likely they are unaware of how they are perceived by their people.
Like them or not, you DO need to get on with your boss!
The CIPD has today featured a story on its website about a recent survey they commissioned which reveals that of 1,374 employees, almost a third (30 per cent) feel their current boss is a bad manager and 44 per cent said they disliked their boss more than controversial PM cover girl Katie Hopkins! Recruitment was ranked as the worst industry for terrible managers with all respondents from that profession reporting that they had left a job because of a poor relationship with a manager. Other sectors which scored poorly in the survey include travel and tourism (77 per cent of respondents had left a job because of a poor manager), marketing and PR (63 per cent) and accounting (61 per cent).
So with this in mind, you may find the following 5 Top Tips useful to help you deal with the different types of ‘tricky’ bosses that may appear in your professional career:-
1.Overly critical boss
The overly critical boss has the habit of constantly correcting their employees and often come across as condescending. They are not generally mean, and often their intentions may be good. Being able to handle criticism is vital for maintaining your composure. Criticism, both competently and incompetently provided, is a common occurrence in the workplace and we ALL get our share:
– Make sure your work is never slapdash or shoddy and that you genuinely do learn from any mistakes.
– Remain assertive when you receive criticism. This will help you to stay confident and cool during the process and allow your boss to have an opinion, while maintaining your own self-esteem – a win-win outcome.
– Arrange regular opportunities to get feedback about your performance from your boss and specifically ask for any negative feedback, such as “are there any areas or situations in which you would like to see me improve or change, or perhaps handle something differently next time?”
To maintain your self-esteem, keep a log of all your successes each day, no matter how small. Most of us remember our failures much more vividly than our successes!
The invisible boss can be perceived as being aloof, uninterested or too busy. An invisible boss probably sounds like heaven for some people, but this type of boss carries its own problems. Needing a quick decision making or authorising money to gaining cooperation from other departments can be hard to achieve when your boss is never around.
– Explain to your boss the difficulties you are experiencing because they’re rarely there. They might not even be aware of the problems they are causing.
– Ask them to agree to be available for a certain amount of time, either face to face or on the telephone.
– To make the best of the time you do have with them, ensure you are well organised.
– Put requests in writing and give as much warning as possible as to when you need a response by.
On a positive note, working with an invisible boss means they trust you get on with the tasks in hand and also allows you to have lots of independence and freedom.
Power is EVERYTHING to this boss. They appreciate the management position more than the job itself. They believe they have supreme authority because of their title. Essentially, this boss has the “because I said so” mentality. If this is your boss:-
– Do what is asked of you, but also, do what you think is right
– Don’t comply with outrageous requests just because the boss says so. Report unethical behaviour to the appropriate parties.
– Be assertive, not aggressive. While it may be easy to get defensive when dealing with a boss on a power trip, avoid this temptation.
Every once in a while, an idiot will make his or her way into a management position. It can be very challenging to work under someone like this. If you do feel like your boss is an idiot!:-
– Ensure you maintain a strong work ethic. As with a scary boss, eventually the idiot’s superiors will notice something is wrong. If you’ve been working hard despite the management, you may even get to replace your boss one day!
– Keep your composure and stay calm, even if you reach the point of anger. Patience is the most important thing.
– Remember they are still your boss- you do need to respect their authority or you may find yourself out of a job.
The miracle boss is someone who is fair, someone who listens and someone who trusts and motivates. The miracle boss asks for feedback and input from all employees. They lead a positive work environment and want you and your co-workers to succeed. It’s great to work for a miracle boss and consider yourself lucky to have one!
– Work your backside off and be grateful – this type of boss doesn’t exist in many organisations!
– Learn from them – support them, visibly show your commitment and go the extra mile.
– Use this great opportunity to really see how far you can go – get a reference from them should they ever decide to leave.
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