Here’s some useful tips on a perennial issue from the folks at Online Business Degree
“Think about your boss. If the image of your superior doesn’t automatically anger and frustrate you, consider yourself lucky. If you even like your boss, don’t ever take that job for granted.
Not every boss in your career will see eye to eye with you on work issues, and some might have a management style that clashes with your personality. You may even encounter a few that are downright abusive.
If you’re stuck in this position, it doesn’t mean you need to start looking for a new job. Just try some of these tips for dealing with a difficult boss.
You’ll build some character, learn some new people skills, and be able to enjoy your job more.
- Offer a solution: There are all kinds of bad bosses out there, whether they micromanage, don’t communicate effectively, or bully their employees. When you’ve identified what it is about your boss that really gets under your skin, think of a solution you can offer to make your interactions run more smoothly. It will come off as a constructive suggestion rather than a criticism. Tell them you’d like to see if you’re more efficient when they only check in on you once a day, ask if they’d consider writing weekly email updates about your project, or come up with a feasible, positive solution to your specific problem. Bullying can be harder to resolve, but addressing the problem with specific activities that offend you is the first step in the right direction.
- Don’t get emotional:The worst reaction to your boss’ frustrating behaviors is to lose your cool. No matter the situation, it’s important to stay professional and not let your emotions get the best of you. If you can feel yourself getting worked up, take a break before you address the issue. Walk around, get some air, and make sure you rein your emotions back in before talking to your boss. Take the time to collect yourself if you’re meeting one-on-one with your boss; even excuse yourself briefly if you need to. This will look much better than losing your temper, getting defensive, or sobbing. You want your boss to take your feedback seriously, and it’ll be easier for him to discount your opinions if he can claim you’re acting irrationally.
- Evaluate yourself:It’s easy to get wrapped up in all the annoying things your boss is doing, but don’t forget to consider the role you play in the conflict. Consider how you handle situations and whether your boss is responding to things you’re doing. Are you consistently missing deadlines? Maybe that’s why he’s micromanaging you. Have you been interrupting others in brainstorming meetings? That could be discouraging him from choosing your ideas. At the very least, evaluating your job performance and interactions with the boss and other co-workers will reaffirm your position and possibly help you acknowledge some areas you can improve upon, an important tool if you and your boss try to compromise on an issue.
- Make note of positive interactions:When you’re frustrated, your negative feelings can spiral out of control if you don’t keep them in check. What starts as mild annoyance can morph into full-blown hatred if you’re not careful. Make sure, even just for the sake of your own mental health, that you mentally acknowledge the positive things your boss does. Even small things can go a long way toward shaping a more neutral opinion of him, making it easier to deal with him on a daily basis. And if your boss has made an attempt to fix something that you’ve mentioned, don’t hesitate to tell him how much you appreciate it.