One often hears people complaining about how terrible their boss is. If these people are to be believed, most bosses are demanding and inconsiderate. They give you a lot more work than any one person is capable of. They set unreasonable deadlines. They’re never satisfied with what you do. They can never acknowledge that they are in the wrong. And they often take credit for your work!
Is it really possible that all bosses are like this? Or is it something about the employee’s attitude that needs to change? Here are some ways to figure this out and deal with a difficult boss:
If you’ve had trouble with some of your bosses, worked moderately well with others and loved some of them, then chances are there’s nothing wrong with your attitude and it really is your boss who is difficult to work with. On the other hand, if you’ve never had a good boss, then you need to ask yourself if it’s your own attitude which needs to change.
If you’ve come to the conclusion that you are really working with someone difficult, then you need to figure out the best way to deal with them. First, consider the degree to which this boss is making your life difficult.
Are they just very demanding and exacting? Then you can try to be more assertive. The third time that your boss asks you to stay overtime in the same week, you can put your foot down and say that you need to get home. Or if they’re giving you more responsibility without increasing your pay, be assertive and state your terms. Think about what would be acceptable to you and present it to your boss as an alternative.
If your difficult boss is going beyond this by manipulating you and taking credit for your work, then you definitely need to think about changing jobs.
If you’ve introspected and found that it’s really your own attitude towards authority that needs to change, then you’re in a difficult position. But at least you’ve taken the first step towards change.
In such cases, try not to react immediately to anything your boss says or does. Think things over calmly and rationally before speaking to your boss about the things that bother you. Plus, think about whether you are maintaining your work/life balance. Sometimes, when you’re overworked, you can’t help but feel upset at authority figures in your life.