When we find ourselves working for a bad boss, there are usually several thoughts that go through our heads:
- This boss is ruining my life
- This boss is going to get me fired
- I’m going to get this boss fired
- I’ve got to get a new job
However, what if I told you there might be a way to improve your relationship with your boss and keep your job at the same time?
What makes a boss a bad boss
We have all worked for a bad boss who made things miserable in the workplace. These bosses usually seem to micromanage everything we do, and any task we complete is never good enough.
Having a big brother looking over our shoulders can quickly wear on us and make our job life pretty miserable.
Second-guessing every decision we make is another character trait of a bad boss. Always making us explain our actions and justify our progress can stifle creativity and progress.
The common problem with a bad boss
Micromanaging and second-guessing are all symptoms of an underlying issue. The issue is a lack of trust from our boss.
Whether it’s due to our boss’s lack of self-esteem or self-confidence, an overall lack of trust is at the root of the problem.
The hack to use a boss’s lack of trust to our advantage
Since many of our workplace problems are rooted in a lack of trust from our supervisor, addressing this trust issue can give us a huge advantage in the workplace.
Building trust with our supervisor may be easier than we think, but the strategy may be an uncomfortable one.
Building trust with our boss
While I wouldn’t consider myself a micromanager, employees do certain things, which can bolster my trust in them.
From my years of experience in supervisory and middle management roles, one of the best ways to gain my confidence is to offer constructive criticism.
- Share hard feedback with your boss.
Most people believe that sharing hard feedback with your boss is a quick way to get fired, but in reality, if done right, it actually builds trust. Let’s put this into perspective.
Most bad bosses rarely communicate with their employees because they are too afraid to talk to them out of fear of retribution.
Because communication lines are broken, many bad bosses will think people are talking about them behind their backs. But if an employee approaches the boss in private and says there’s a problem they would like to discuss, this can actually start to build a connection of trust.
If your boss realizes you are courageous enough to talk to them about workplace issues, they will begin to trust that you will be their eyes and ears in the workplace.
This is not to say that you’re the rat who tells on people, but rather you are willing to put yourself into uncomfortable positions for the team’s benefit.
Sitting down with your boss and being open with them about what is happening and how it affects you will do much more to mend a broken relationship and lack of trust than you may realize.
Focus on building trust through increased communication
Naturally, most people distance themselves from overpowering bosses out of fear and displeasure.
However, the best strategy to deal with a bad boss is to go out of your way to improve communication and build pathways to increased trust.