The GetFive Blog

Work with a Difficult Manager? These 3 Steps Will Help Improve the Situation

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difficult-manager-tipsDo you work with a difficult manager? One that never crosses the harassment line, but is just generally unpleasant? From using offensive language to tearing people down, a boss that repulses you can make your professional life miserable.

What can you do if you hate the person who commands your workdays? Consider these three steps to try to improve the situation.

Step 1: Talk with HR

Schedule a meeting with your human resources contact to discuss your concerns. Write down specific examples of how your boss acts negatively, demeans employees, and offends clients. Include any other areas in which you feel they are not representing the company well. If you have examples of how this is affecting employees’ productivity and morale, jot them down. These are all powerful examples to prove your point. Then listen to your HR representative’s advice on how you can move forward. Through a strong partnership, you can strive for change.

Step 2: Talk with colleagues

If your boss is truly terrible, chances are you aren’t the only one affected by it. Start by meeting with trusted coworkers to bring up your concerns and see if they reciprocate or disagree. If they feel similarly to you, brainstorm new ways you can communicate and interact with your boss. Try these new strategies to see if they work. If not, you may want to schedule another meeting with HR and bring along others who agree with you. There is strength in numbers.

Step 3: Talk to your boss

If you’re bold, having a direct conversation with a negative supervisor might be a final option to see if change can occur. You must be careful with how you construct this conversation so you don’t offend or compromise your already shaky relationship. For example, make suggestions on how you think the team would be better motivated, or why you prefer to work one way over another.

Finally, if you’ve tried to keep an open mind and inspire change but are at your wit’s end with your boss, it may be time to prep your resume and start networking. Get yourself a good career coach and see what’s out there. You deserve a job that makes you happy while working alongside people you respect.