Having Problems Dealing With an Unfair Boss?

"Having Problems Dealing With an Unfair Boss?" Angry Emoji with Lipstick and Lashes
February 24, 2018
70 / 100

~by Susan McGuire~

Ever have an unfair boss who made your life miserable? What about a supervisor who had it in for you? These could be potentially damaging to your career, and to your health.

But what to do about it?

First, I shouldn’t have to state the obvious, but managers are people too. Though you might disagree. As humans, they are flawed, just as we all are. They may be wrong in some cases, but then, they may also be right. Perhaps you were in the wrong?

I’ve had my share of “bad boss” issues, but one particular incident really stuck with me. To this day, I’m not only surprised at how well my own actions turned things around, but I’m also impressed that a boss who had been so against me, completely switched gears. Here’s my story.

My boss in this case, I’ll call him Theo, had it in for me. For reasons I was unaware of, he thought I was working against him. Though he may not have been my favorite person, he was my manager and deserved my best work. Despite my efforts, my standing within my department was plummeting. I was perceived as a low performer based on the metrics they were using.

Concerned, I decided to do something about it. I knew management didn’t have their metrics straight, so I pulled together more accurate metrics to make my case. Other than this, I didn’t have a plan, but late one afternoon I marched into Theo’s office to talk openly with him. Rather than accuse my manager of treating me unfairly, I told him what he wanted to hear – with 4 simple words. It worked better than I expected, but that goes to show that Theo was at least a little open-minded.

What did I say to him?

I started off with, “I’m on your side”. I continued with, “I’m not working against you”. Once I knew Theo was willing to listen and that he would not be on the defensive, I presented my metrics showing that those they had been using were missing a bunch of relevant data. After carefully reviewing my numbers, Theo realized the discrepancy, and showed valid concern – not only for drawing the wrong conclusions about my performance, but he started to wonder just how inaccurate and unfair their metrics were for his other employees.

Because of his earlier impressions of me, my job was in jeopardy. So starting the next day, Theo began jumping through hoops to reposition my standing with his management. He had to do some serious backpedaling, but he did it. He had revealed to me that I was targeted for their next ‘resource action’, or layoff. When that time inevitably came, I was not the one who got laid off. He had indeed fought for me. My metrics were so compelling, he completely changed his view about how metrics were gathered and how his employees were evaluated. He was grateful that I had presented this evidence, but he also appreciated my approach and attitude. This shift in our relationship was significant.

Here are my top 5 tips for forging a favorable relationship with your manager:
  1. Let your manager know you want to make them look good. Everyone wants an ally. If they know you’re on their side, then they’ll likely see you as a collaborator and  team player – someone they know they can turn to.
  2. Ask, “What can I do extra to help meet your goals?” Now, this does not mean you shouldn’t think for yourself, but rather, that you are willing to go above and beyond. You can work on a project you enjoy, but if it is not in line with your manager’s goals or visions, it won’t help your career much. Ask to be put on highly visible projects.
  3. Give your manager the benefit of the doubt. Were they just having a bad day? Or is their negative behavior becoming a pattern? Handle accordingly.
  4. Deal with relationship issues directly. If your manager is exhibiting consistent and persistent negative behavior towards you, it’s time to talk. Do not start by going over their head. Give your boss a chance to explain and adjust on their own. If they aren’t willing, or if the situation gets worse or escalates, then it’s time to go to Human Resources or to their manager. Which one will depend on the circumstances.
  5. This is a big one.Do not go to your manager with problems. Your manager has enough to deal with. The last thing they want is to be given more problems to handle, and worse yet, you’ll be like a thorn in their side. Instead, present solutions. You may have to first explain a potential problem, but then quickly go into your proposed solution. This shows creativity and initiative on your part.

There are many poor managers out there, and circumstances vary greatly. Often, it’s just a matter of misunderstandings, or possibly a personality conflict. These less complicated issues are easier to work through. By treating your manager with respect, and by having compassion for their human flaws, you’ll improve your chances for a better career and more fulfilling work relationships. In addition, challenging situations and difficult relationships are chronically stressful. So by improving your work relationships, you’ll reduce your stress levels and improve your overall health.

Have you ever had a challenging or difficult boss? How did you handle it?


Meet the Author: Susan McGuire

Having Problems Dealing With an Unfair Boss? 1

Susan McGuire

As a Holistic Health Coach and Lifestyle Guide, Susan takes a practical, comprehensive and personalized approach as she supports and empowers her clients to achieve their health and lifestyle goals. Coach Susan meets her clients where they are, and works with them to find the right combination of positive lifestyle and behavioral changes that they can implement with lasting results.

If you’re ready, willing and motivated to take charge of your health and transform your life, then consider talking with Coach Susan.

To take the next step towards achieving your health goals, schedule your complimentary Breakthrough Session with Coach Susan:

• Website: www.McGHealthCoach.com/contact-susan-mcguire

• Email: McG.HealthCoach@gmail.com

• Blog: www.HealthCoachSusanMcGuire.wordpress.com/

Categories

More Posts:

The Power of Women-Owned Small Businesses

     Women-owned small businesses are on the rise, and their impact is undeniable. In fact, in 2019 alone, women-owned nearly 12 million businesses that employed nearly 9 million people and generated over $1.9 trillion in revenue. From retail to technology to finance,...

Careers That Let You Make a Social Impact

Are you often frustrated by the state of society and angered by social injustices? If you wish you could have a bigger influence on society, consider switching to a career with more social outreach and influence. Here are a few careers that help you to make a lasting...

5 Strategies to Build Team Spirit in Your Business

The manner in which we connect and communicate with our staff members can have a considerable influence on their levels of motivation as well as their output. In this article, we explore a variety of psychological and motivational approaches that can inspire teams and...

How to Help Employees Get to Know Each Other Better

When your employees know each other better, there is more camaraderie in your workplace. Because they are more familiar with each other and more invested in each other’s lives, the quality of work—particularly group work—improves.  To be a more effective company, you...

How to Feel More Confident When Restarting Your Career

Are you considering restarting your career? If so, you're not alone. Many people feel the need to start over at some point in their lives. The good news is that there are things you can do to make the process easier and more enjoyable. Here are a few tips for feeling...

How to Catapult Your Productivity with Business Certificates

Investing in updated certifications for yourself and your employees will do a great deal to increase your business output. Existing employees who don't have the time or flexibility to go back to school even part time can improve their skills by getting new...

How to Plan a Mid-Life Career Change

Moving into a different career can seem like an overwhelming challenge. However, if you have realized that you are no longer satisfied with your current role, making the switch can mean the difference between long-term happiness and long-term misery. Changing careers...

3 Communication Trends All Food Manufacturers Need to Know About

Effective communication is the basis of any successful business or industry. It allows for efficient teamwork and collaboration, helps identify and prevent problems, and leads to unique and innovative solutions. On the other hand, when it’s lacking, the final product...

All you need to know about Staff Augmentation: Business Solutions

With the Information Technology sector looking for better avenues to improve their work productivity and scalability, an innovative alternative to hiring. While the method is still in progress and is slowly gaining more visibility, staff augmentation is one of the up...

7 Proven Ways To Get A Head Start With Your Career

Every young professional wants to get a head start with their career. It takes you a step ahead of your competitors and ensures you reach your goals and milestones as expected. Whether entering the job landscape after high school or university, it always helps. Either...
Careers That Let You Make a Social Impact

Careers That Let You Make a Social Impact

Are you often frustrated by the state of society and angered by social injustices? If you wish you could have a bigger influence on society, consider switching to a career with more social outreach and influence. Here are a few careers that help you to make a lasting...

How to Help Employees Get to Know Each Other Better

How to Help Employees Get to Know Each Other Better

When your employees know each other better, there is more camaraderie in your workplace. Because they are more familiar with each other and more invested in each other’s lives, the quality of work—particularly group work—improves.  To be a more effective company, you...

All Categories

Business Operations

Entrepreneur Interviews

Marketing, Networking, & Social Media

Self Care & Personal Development

Working Moms

Business Software and Technology

Entrepreneurship & Small Business

Organizing Tips

Sales

Career Building

Family Businesses

Inspiration

Starting Your Own Business

Work-Life Balance

Communication

Hiring Help

Management & Leadership

Time Management & Priorities

Women in Leadership

Recent Posts

How to Avoid Tax Trouble at Your Business

How to Avoid Tax Trouble at Your Business

As a business owner, you know how important it is to stay on top of your finances and taxes. But if you don’t have the knowledge or resources to do it yourself, getting help can be the best way to make sure everything is handled properly.  Here’s an overview of some...

What to Do When Your Vehicle Lease Comes to an End

What to Do When Your Vehicle Lease Comes to an End

As your vehicle lease reaches the end of its term, you are presented with three options: return the car to the dealership, sell the lease or buy it outright. Each choice obviously has benefits and drawbacks that must be weighed before making a decision. In this...

The Power of Women-Owned Small Businesses

The Power of Women-Owned Small Businesses

     Women-owned small businesses are on the rise, and their impact is undeniable. In fact, in 2019 alone, women-owned nearly 12 million businesses that employed nearly 9 million people and generated over $1.9 trillion in revenue. From retail to technology to finance,...

Nyago Michael Emmanuel

Nyago Michael Emmanuel

We invite many people who can invest in our Akiba Ya umoja community benefit savings and investment group of Uganda to enable us expand our operations in Uganda

Soe Tun: The Copy Doctor

Soe Tun: The Copy Doctor

Autistic kid finds out that he’s unemployable and doesn’t enjoy most social settings. Decides to be a pro copywriter as a result.

Annie Anderson – Business Strategist & WordPress Creator

Annie Anderson – Business Strategist & WordPress Creator

Annie Anderson is the owner and digital creator at Midnight Rebel Digital Co. With over 25 years experience in design and development and more than 15 years experience with WordPress, Annie is a great person to have in your corner when it comes to websites, tech, and systems.