Auntie’s corner

Dear Aunt Silvia, I am young working lady with a very good job. Recently there were major changes in our company and I was put to work under a very uncooperative boss. Everything I do, he says it is not right.

Dear Aunt Silvia,

I am young working lady with a very good job. Recently there were major changes in our company and I was put to work under a very uncooperative boss. Everything I do, he says it is not right. It’s been almost three months and I feel I have reached the end of the road. On one hand I want to resign but afraid I won’t get a good job like this one. Or is there more than meets the eye, how do I go about this problem?

Dear Frazer,

A boss is like any other human being; you do not have to stomach humiliation just because he is the boss. Some of these bosses who have the tendency to be bullies ought to be told out rightly, putting him in his right place, albeit professionally. Discuss rather than confront. When your boss criticizes you, don’t react out of emotion and become confrontational with them about it because that breeds more conflict. Instead, use their criticism as a topic for discussion on interests, goals, and problem-solving and ask them for their advice and see how they react to your question. If they criticize your work, then that means that they have their own idea on how that work should be done, so ask them for their advice on how your work can be improved.

Whatever happens keep your professional face on. Know the difference between not liking your boss and not being professional. You don’t have to make your boss your friend or even like your boss as a person either, but you do have to remain professional and get the job done and carry out their instructions dutifully as a subordinate, just as you would expect them to be professional.

Sometimes, we also have to evaluate our own performance. Before you go attacking your boss, examine your own performance and ask yourself if you are doing everything right. You can also try to get opinions from other coworkers about your performance and see if there is any warrant to the criticisms of your supervisor before you criticize their opinions.

As much as some bosses are very pushy and bossy; once in while if you scrutinize what they are criticizing you will find some elements of truth in it, so be very careful and evaluate yourself first before you counter attack; sometimes we end up learning a lot from such bosses, most often than not they possess something that you will not find in any other person. So, whenever they are criticizing try and read between the lines and learn something, do not take every criticism negatively, criticism is good it makes us grow where there is a weakness.

You also have to know that you can do little to change these kinds of people. Being a difficult person is part of their personality and therefore it is a very difficult, if not impossible to change such a person, you might think they have a grudge against you, but truth be told- these people are as aggressive towards everybody else whom they think are not up to their standards of doing some things- so don’t think that you can change how they act.

Instead, change the way that you view their behaviour. Don’t label them as being inhuman--just merely label them as your boss. By avoiding derogatory labeling, you avoid making it easy on yourself to be angry with your boss. Every human being has two sides of a coin; just because you do not know his other side, should not make him an animal.

Before you resign, think carefully about your reasons and make sure it’s a right move. Reacting with emotions sometimes puts us in trouble. You have to ask yourself why you have to resign because of one person- who is also an employee just like you. Just think of what you are doing to your career if you make this move.

Try and share this problem with your family or even close friends and see what they have to say about it-and always try to seek a second and a third opinion; don’t be biased and rely on one sided advice it might not be favourable in such circumstances. Also people who are ready to resign from their work places usually have a plan B; unless you have one, otherwise in these difficult economic times you cannot afford to be out of a job for more than a month, more especially if you are a family man. Think of the impact it will have on your family-then make your judgment.

 If you ask around, in every office there is usually one bully supervisor or boss, who tends to harass people who are working under them; but believe you me, on the flip side these arethe people who spice up our everyday office life.


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