Wednesday, January 7, 2009

Alas: The Bully Boss

A job is more than something that we're proud of. It is the means by which we trade our skills, talent and training for a living wage. What do you do when your boss behaves more like Jerome the lunch room bully, who enjoys stealing your recess, instead of that pragmatic superior who treats you with respect?

Besides taking one for the team, there are several key things that employees can do to fight back. Diagnosing the person, and the era in which they were born is the key. Employees whose bosses are Baby Boomers, need to understand a few key concepts, according a study from Cornell University, School of Labor and Industrial Relations.

When managing boomers, show them how you can help them use time wisely. Assess their comfort level with technology in advance. Demonstrate how important a strong team is and customize your style to their unique needs.

If these tips fail, taking a step back is essential. Remember, you're not less of a man or woman when you take a step back. Instead, emphasize that working with you will be a good experience for them. Follow up and check in and ask how the individual is doing on a regular basis. Lastly, remember that people will only do to you, "What you allow them to do."

Please share your horror stories on this site. You can remain anonymous.


  1. oh yes I have had some horror stories. Because I have a dominant personality its hard for me to sit back and let a boss act crazy. so I have had many jobs that wanted to get rid of me because they felt I was a threat. But fortunately I also have some common sense. Alot of jobs try to scare you out or put trumped up charges against you, so forth and so on. I have had jobs just out-right lie against me. That's just sad. when you know your rights, have faith and courage no one can intimidate you. They will try of course but it never works.

  2. My experiences coupled with your comments has allowed me to evaluate closer, the workplace and relationships with superiors. The world can be cold and harsh sometimes. Some superiors do obtain a high from bullying others. It's unfortunate, but it happens.

  3. My situation was a nightmare and I felt like I had to take being bullied because I needed a job and have a child to support. I kept my eyes open for better opportunities and finally I was able to escape. I knew my boss was insecure and intimidated but you can't grow professionally in a negative environment. I say make moves as fast as you can.

  4. Maintaining at least six months savings is very important. It allows us to face emergencies, but sometimes, it also allows employees to quit such situations for the their personal well being. Lack of unions in the workplace is another major contributor to bullying in the workplace.