Have you been in a situation where your Boss takes all the credit of your work and makes you responsible for his mistakes? Does your Boss never listen to you, or at least you feel he doesn’t? I am sure that 10-20% of my readers must have been through these situations at least once. Though I might not have a magical solution to correct this problem, I can recommend few steps through which you can get yourself out of these situations.
Do self-assessment first: I am a huge believer of second chances. Thus, I would recommend you to self-assess yourself before blaming your Boss. I am not saying that you are a cry baby, and you have a problem of crying no matter what your Boss does for you. Sometimes there is a perception difference between how you see things and how your Boss sees the same thing. Thus, before taking any action, you want to get rid of these variables. You can do this assessment by observing your Boss’s behavior towards other colleagues. You can also ask your colleagues about your behavior, and your Boss’s behavior towards you. This will give you some good insight on identifying the exact problem.
Move-on but document: Let’s say, you found out through your self-assessment process that your Boss is being unreasonable to you. In that case, you can still have a fresh start. It’s never too late to forgive someone. Try forgiving your Boss for his past behavior, and try to have a fresh start. But this time, take the ball in your hand. Take initiatives to objectify your goals and document your achievements. For example: If you are working on a project, and you got praised by your colleague or your customer, then keep those documents aside in one file. This kind of information, justifying your achievements, will help you when you want to confront your Boss about your progress.
Have a friend in upper management: I am not intending to bribe anyone or going out of your way to please someone. I am just saying that you should keep good relationships with your Boss’s Boss. If you don’t know how to initiate or cultivate these relationships then I have one advice for you – “Lunch”. I would recommend you to invite your Boss’s Boss for a lunch. This will give you an informal setting, where you can discuss your issues with him. Once you feel comfortable enough with this relationship, you can e-mail him about your achievements in a monthly e-mail. This practice will give you some visibility to upper management, and in case of issues with your immediate Boss, you can ask for help from Boss’s Boss.
Quit your job: After you have exhausted all of your options, and they don’t seem to be working, then you should think of getting an another job. You don’t want to be stuck in a job, where you don’t find any opportunity of growth. But don’t quit your job right away. Be patient and keep working hard, until you find a reasonably good offer. In the meanwhile, you should start collecting references and recommendation letters from your colleagues, customers, and old Bosses. Make sure to document all of your achievements and interesting projects for your job search. And yeah! Don’t do the same mistake again. Try to find a new job, where you can produce measurable results, and your performance depends on your deliverables, and not on your Boss’s perception of you.
I hope these tips will give you some idea about how to deal with a bad boss. Let me know, if you have any other ideas through which you can work at a workplace where your Manager doesn’t value you that much. Thanks. – Bhavin Gandhi