NEW YORK (MainStreet) — Few factors are as crucial to employees’ ability to enjoy their job as their relationship with the person in charge. You could be working at your dream job at a convenient location with friendly co-workers, but if your boss isn’t right for you, then the job might not feel right for you, either.
Unfortunately, in recent years, some employees have likely been forced to grin and bear a bad boss for longer then they may have ordinarily, simply because of the fear of not being able to find a job elsewhere.
“I don't think that there's been an increase in bad management in recent years -- there's always been plenty of bad management -- but I do think that employees may feel more trapped,” said Alison Green, a career expert who writes the well-known Ask A Manager blog. “Because the job market is bad, people feel like they have fewer options and that they have to stay and stick it out.”
That sense of being stuck in a job may ease in the coming months, assuming the number of job openings continues to increase as it has so far this year, but even in a strong economy, employees often struggle with whether to flee a job due to a bad or boss, or else figure out a way to make the situation work.
To help workers out there struggling with their manager, MainStreet offers six of the most common types of bad bosses and asked career experts to help lay out the best strategy for coping with each. In some cases, this may simply require the worker to tweak his or her approach to the job, while in other cases, the only option may be putting in your two weeks’ notice.
But as John Challenger, CEO of the career firm Challenger, Gray & Christmas points out, it’s important to remember that every boss likely exhibits some of the traits from the each of the types below. “If they’re on the extreme end of the scale, then yes, you have real problems,” he said. “But most people are really in the moderate or middle range.”
The Micromanager is a character most employees know well, not just in the workplace, but in their personal lives. This is someone who, according Challenger, “drives you crazy because they basically want to do your job for you.” As a result, one is likely to feel suffocated by these bosses because they nitpick every little task done by those they manage.
To deal with this situation, employees must first be honest with themselves about why they are being micromanaged.
“If you drop the ball on things more often than very occasionally, forget details, don't follow up on things, miss deadlines, or produce work that requires a lot of changes from others, a good manager would get more closely involved,” Green said, adding that for these employees, it may just come down to proving oneself. “But if you're confident that your boss has no reason to doubt your work and/or your ability to stay on top of it, then this may simply be the style she uses with everyone, without adapting based on need.”