If your relationship with your supervisor is difficult, stressful, or interfering with your productivity, now is the time to make a change.
According to a Harvard Business Review survey, 58% of people say they trust strangers more than their own boss. While boss-employee dynamics often are complicated, they don’t have to means that it’s time for a new job. Take a few minutes to step back and determine where the disconnect is.
Be open and honest enough to consider if you are causing or contributing to the problem Some signs that this is this case:
· You have had issues/problems with most of your bosses.
· You always or frequently feel resentful when your boss gives directions or shares ideas
· You have unrealistic expectations (for example, you can’t handle even a little stress or you get angry whenever things don’t go smoothly).
· You have a hard time accepting or responding appropriately to constructive criticism.
If your attitude is part of the problem, consider where you might do better. Identify colleagues who have good relationships with their bosses and others. Observe how they interact and communicate. Seek insights from a friend or trusted co-worker about how you could work better with your boss.
Of course, sometimes a poor manager or boss is the main problem. This is someone who:
· Doesn’t devote any time to your professional growth, doesn’t seek or is dismissive of your ideas, is constantly critical and seldom if ever doles out praise, and/or takes credit for your good ideas.
· Doesn’t trust others, discourages team members from interacting with each other, and often suspects people are talking about him or her.
· Engages in discrimination and/or harassment.
· Has unrealistic standards for others and relishes the ability to intimidate, upset, or humiliate people.
· Doesn’t take responsibility for his or her actions and instead blames others.
Of course, there is no one-size fits all way to deal with a difficult boss. However, experts suggest a few tips, including: identify your boss’ motivation, stay one step ahead, set boundaries, don’t assume he or she knows everything, act like the leader you want your boss to be, and determine triggers that you can avoid. Ultimately, don’t let a bad boss ruin your work or your life. Take charge and find joy, support, and job satisfaction where you can.
If the problem is more mutual, that is, you have different work or personality styles, consider meeting with your boss to establish schedules, communication methods, project steps, budget management, etc. that work for both of you. Productivity coach and consultant Carson Tate created a workstyle assessment that helps you manage your work and understand how others function. According to Tate, there are four productivity personalities:
· The Prioritizer, an analytical, logical thinker.
· The Planner, a great detail-oriented organizer (but doesn’t work we without a plan).
· The Arranger, a more emotional, intuitive worker.
· The Visualizer, a more intuitive personality who works well under pressure but gets bored easily.
By understanding how you and your boss think and work, you can seek ways to make the best of an imperfect situation.