10 Strategies To Handle An Impossible Boss

A bad boss is not only undesirable; new research carried out at the Université Francois Rabelais, and published in the Journal of Business and Psychology found that bad bosses affect how different areas of your life relate to one another including your physical health, raising your risk for heart disease; and your morale while in the office.

Of course the best way to manage a bad boss is not to have one in the first place because a difficult supervisor can make a misery of your budding career.

Hopefully the strategies below will help you on your job:

1. Understand what your boss’ expectations are: you need to identify what he cares about, what are his fears and his measure of success or failure. When you know what drives your boss (even if your boss may not be fully conscious of it), you can speak to “his listening,” frame your opinions and use language in ways that line up with his core values, concerns and priorities.

2. Adjust yourself to their preferences: Observe your boss’ behavioural style and preferences.  Is he fast-paced and quick to make decisions? Is he slow to think about things, needing time to process information?

3. If your boss is a yeller, a criticiser, or a judge – stand firm: If you’re doing the best job you can do, keep your head held high and don’t give him the satisfaction of pushing you about.  Rather ask questions, seek to understand, and work to defuse a difficult situation instead of cowering or responding in anger

4. Manage-up: Lynn Taylor, a workplace expert and consultant, offers a constructive solution; taking a step back, trying to understand the motivation behind your boss' behaviour, and then taking a collaborative approach to fixing it. Even if you aren't being managed down, maybe you can make some progress by managing your boss.

5. Work around their faults: While it may sound counter intuitive to support a bad boss in becoming more successful, there is absolutely nothing to be gained by making him look bad, going to war or facilitating his (or her) failure.  If he is as bad as you think, he will likely do a pretty good job of that all by himself. Exposing his incompetence will only compound your own misery and may even damage your reputation.

6. Be Proactive: Particularly when you're dealing with a micromanager, head off your boss' requests by anticipating them and getting things done before they come to you.

7. Do your study: Margie Warrell, a keynote speaker and the bestselling author advice that; if you are moving to a new organisation, do your researches to make sure you’re not jumping from the frying pan into the fire. Sometimes in our desperation to escape a toxic work environment we fail to take notice of the warning signs that the new job we're taking will only be worse.  Have a coffee with whoever you know at the new company to get a sense of the culture, employee engagement, moral, and management style. Investing a few hours up front could spare you a few years of frustration.

8. Keep a personal journal of your communications: Make sure to document interactions with your boss—be it requests or criticisms—so you can refer back to them if he or she ever contradicts earlier given instruction.

9. Deliver on your tasks: No matter how bad your boss' behaviour, avoid letting it affect your work. You want to stay on good terms with other superiors in the organization (and retain your job!).

10. Be sure you are not a difficult employee; who is pointing the blame finger in the wrong direction.

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