What to do with an abusive manager?

It can be annoying to feel unappreciated at work by your boss if you are a typical employee who goes the extra mile. Often, an incapable employer or manager will feel threatened by skilled subordinates. The last thing you need is a power struggle in the office. After all, your aim is to perform as well as you can and to establish yourself as a reliable employee for your boss.

If you feel like your manager is on a power trip, consider your options. Don’t worry, because there are a lot of ways to help you navigate this situation!

1. Keep an open line with your manager.

Even though you might be inclined to avoid your manager, make an effort to build a solid relationship with them. It’s possible that the power struggles you observe at the office are just misunderstandings. If you can, meet with your boss as frequently as you can and remind them that your goal is to enhance their reputation and image with the higher-ups. Engage them in a discussion about what they want to see from your work and deliverables. If possible, help them feel responsible for the new ideas and initiatives that you have led.

2. Do the work every day.

When you start to feel like you are at the center of a power struggle in the office, the first thing that comes to mind is to tone down your work performance. Refrain from giving it your all. Resist the urge to underperform. No, continue to do your best work, but be mindful about how you communicate your achievements. It’s possible that your excitement over landing that big client will come across as braggadocious. Just do your best to address your accomplishments as a shared success with your boss.

3. Take care of yourself always.

It’s hard to believe that an outstanding employee could be fired for being great, but yes, it does happen. It’s possible. An insecure and incapable manager may target you if they feel threatened. Just in case, cover yourself by keeping a journal of issues that arise. It may sound silly, but it’s important to have a record of what has happened. You may want to keep the documentation at home and not share it with your colleagues or officemates.

Above all, you need to maintain your sanity. As much as possible, keep your mind calm. If power struggles at work become too intense, your health may suffer. Employees who are stressed are more likely to experience health issues. Don’t let an unprofessional boss push you over the edge. If you cannot handle the issues, look for a different job. It’s time to quit or leave it. Making the decision to stay requires a lot of effort on your part to work through the issues.


4. Ask for help from the top manager.

If the advice from above does not work, you can have a discussion with the head manager as the last resort. The decision to do so is riddled with risks. Your manager might be looking for a job as a result of your complaint. It is also possible that you could be the one who has to walk outside. Only you are aware of your company’s real culture.

If you don’t file a complaint, you may be able to find a way to seek a mentor at the company. Use the opportunity to connect with someone outside of your department as a way to learn more about the organization. Do not engage in conversations about the power struggle at work. Anything that you say could get you back to your boss. If you need to vent, choose someone from outside the organization, and be sure they’ll keep your communication private.

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