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What can an employee do to protect themselves? Here are some tips to assist you…

The Explosive Manager

Keep emotions to a minimum and stick to work issues. If your rage-aholic manager shouts at you, don’t shout back. Instead, maintain your professionalism and calmly deal with the situation.

When dealing with an angry or volatile manager, never confront her in an emotionally charged state. Remove yourself from the situation or remain silent. A good breathing technique to reduce your stress levels can be found in this blog How to Manage Stress at Work.

Then in a day or two, book a discussion with your manager on how her angry comments make you feel and affect your productivity. Documenting the incidents, in detail, and report abuse through the proper channels at work.

If your complaint falls on deaf ears, it’s time to look for another job. Staying in an environment with an explosive manager will only wear on your self-esteem and physical health. No job is worth that.

The Absent Manager

These managers are absent either physically or mentally. Unfortunately, in their absence, they often forget about their employees. You might not get the recognition you deserve, be forgotten when it’s time for a review, or just feel as if you are invisible.

With an absentee manager, your communication efforts are vital. You need to be assertive in your requests. Your manager may even be unaware of how her lack of direction impacts you; tell her. Set up periodic meetings, or updates to report on what you’ve accomplished. You must be proactive with this type of manager.

The Moody Manager

On Monday, he may be cheery and jovial. On Tuesday, he may come in quiet and sullen. By Friday, he’s barking orders at everyone he sees.

Resist the temptation to be defensive. Instead of saying, “Why are you treating me this way?” say, “You seem to be having a bad day”. This puts the negative emotion back on him. His moodiness is really about him, not you. Book in a meeting to discuss how his moods affect your work.

Whatever you do, do not suffer in silence: doing so will impact your physical and mental health. Working for someone like this creates a great deal of stress, consider transferring to another department if all your efforts to rectify this situation fails.

The Cowardly Manager

Usually, cowardly managers create a fairly dysfunctional office setting with their lack of leadership. The best way is to work with a cowardly manager, not against them. Ask open-ended questions to get input and write down what your manager says. Report on your accomplishment, based on their suggestions, and say “thanks”, this will help to boost their confidence as a manager. Bring up the success you experienced, in an office meeting, again singing the praises of your manager for their suggestions. This will in turn show you are on their side.

The Oversexed Manager

Sexual advances in the office not only makes for an uncomfortable situation, but it’s also illegal. Treating a subordinate in this way is abusing their position of power – it’s unacceptable. They think you won’t report them for fear of losing your job.

Document incidents from the beginning. Write down the date, time, where it happened and what exactly was said. Report what you’ve documented to HR and your managers supervisor. Always keep what you’ve documented at home, not in your desk at work. If colleagues have experienced the same treatment, and that’s usually the case, go in together. Know your rights, ask for an immediate transfer, or position where your manager won’t be above you any longer.

Managers are Human

We all come to work carrying our own baggage, it’s no different for managers. The key is knowing how to deal with them to protect yourself and your job.

If you find you are dealing with a situation which is affecting your mental or physical health, or general well-being, do what you can to network into another position in a different department, or right out that company’s door. No job is worth jeopardising your health and well-being.

Should things not improve at work, why not get in touch with one of our friendly consultants who will be only too pleased to assist you in finding you the right opportunity.

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