Your step-by-step guide to dealing with (7 types of) bosses from hell

Here’s some expert advice on how to survive the wrath of the nastiest bosses.
Updated on May 27, 2015 03:14 PM IST
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Hindustan Times | By

If your office is a like an ocean, where you’re the little fish and your boss is the shark, always on the hunt for you, here’s your survival kit. We took the advice of experts to put together tips to help you pull through the hell that you are caught in.

1 The Martyr boss
The martyr boss’ favourite T-shirt is the one which has “Take one for the team” emblazoned on it. They work really hard. Even if they have a serious case of the loosies, they will still come and work. You’re wondering what’s the problem? Well, they expect the same from you. Who cares if you broke your finger. You have to come to work, even if it’s donkey work!!

*How to deal with them- You can’t outwork them. Period. Tell them how much they rock and how well their hard work is appreciated. The martyr boss wants recognition so give it to them.

2 Old is Gold Boss
Bob Dylan famously sang “The times, they are a-changin.” But these bosses don’t seem to get that. Dinosaurs in the age of social media, they are the last one to figure out the new e-mail system. They refuse to keep up with modern trends such as Twitter or Facebook. Sadly, their opinions influence your work, and you end up working in a way that your grandma would find archaic.

*How to deal with them- These bosses mean no harm, they are just stuck in their ways. Show them the advantages of a new system. They are old school but they are not dumb.

3 The escapist boss
To be or not to be” sums up this kind of a boss. These escapists can be found mulling if they should make this decision or not, and if they do or don’t do, would they be held accountable for it. They weasel their way out of decisions and answer questions in a non-committed way. In the end they leave everyone hanging, forcing the employees to ponder “to be or not to be”.

*How to deal with them- Always get confirmation on papers for the decision they are making or you’re making. Nailing them down is tough, but make it impossible for them to avoid any question or decision.

4 The perfect boss
So, what’s wrong with the perfect boss? Nothing. How do you know? Well, the fact that the author of this article has the liberty to write this kind of an article indicates that the author has a cool boss.

*How to deal with them- Respect them, work hard for them, because they will be the ones shaping your career and you as an individual. Learn from them.

5 Grumpy cat boss
The sun never shines on them. They will always find something wrong with everything. If you fix a problem, you were partly responsible for creating it. If you improve company morale, you’re guilty of not working hard enough. This boss is about as fun to be around as a funeral home.

*How to deal with them: Being a Debbie Downer is in their DNA, changing them is mission impossible. Sympathise with them but don’t get sucked into their misery.

6 The Mr India boss
You receive their mails and occasionally get to talk to them on the phone. But you never ever find them in office. It’s like someone has hidden them under the witness protection program and they are living under an assumed identity. They bombard you with e-mails demanding work day and night, sucking the life out of you.

*How to deal with them With the Mr India boss in charge, get an action plan in writing. If they’re not around, who is in charge? Who can sign off projects? Can you go directly to their superior? On the plus side, you won’t have a boss constantly looking over your shoulder.

7 The drone boss
Like a helicopter drone, they are always hovering over you, keeping an eye on you. They don’t trust your judgment, your work and of course you. In fact, they are convinced that if it weren’t for them, the whole company would just collapse. They have got their hand in every pie, slowing everything down. They put their stamp on everything, stealing credit.

*How to deal with them: Give them the impression that the best of the ideas are actually their ideas. Record everything from e-mails to texts. If they try to make you look incompetent, you need evidence to back up your side of the story.

(Inputs by psychologist Pulkit Sharma and relationship expert Jai Madan)

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Monday, June 27, 2022