In every company there is a "bad boss" and if you look more closely, it seems that there's no good boss in the whole wide world. But, that's far from the truth: the problem is most likely in employees.
There's no such thing as a bad bossRoger Quinn ▼ Sunday April 11, 2010 6:01PM ET
To complain about boss' behaviour is natural: he is higher in the food chain and just that fact is enough to make employees envy, that's natural order of things. "I should be in his shoes", "I could do that better", "Why he's the boss and not me?", those are all questions that may appear from time to time, but when employees are talking about their "bad boss" instead of working, that can turn to a disaster.
Contrary to a very popular belief, you boss is not to blame for everything you consider unfair: you should turn to yourself first. First, there's a reason why your boss is where he is. He is an expert in his field, good in communication with other people and he worked harder than others to achieve his goal.
Those three things are a must if someone wants to climb a corporate ladder. That is the answer to one of the most popular questions: "Why he's the boss and I'm not?" It's simple: he is better in what he is doing.
Second, if you don't understand your boss' wishes and demands, ask yourself do you have a complete picture. Maybe corporate communications are not good enough and you don't know what's going on in your company, our you simply can't understand his strategy. In both cases that' not important.
Since you are paid for your work that means that company is doing a good business and that obviously means that your boss in not so bad at all. This is the second important rule: don't think without a proof that your boss is incompetent.
Now, you'll say, your boss doesn't know your job and doesn't know "how hard is to achieve his goals". That may be absolutely correct because he's your boss, not god. He must be familiar with all processes in the company but he can't be expert in every single detail.
So, try to understand his weaknesses, what he don't understand and what he doesn't know and offer him a solution. Explain him your part of the job, what you need to get the job done and explain how your better productivity will help the company.
Next, you must forget your job description. In today's fast and furious economy everyone must go that extra mile, do more than is required and constantly seek for a new and innovative way to the job.
So, don't think about job description as a binding contract, think of it as a frame which you must fill with your regular duties and then add some more. Ask for additional duty, try to find it yourself, show initiative and show clearly to your boss how you solved the problem. You will earn a big plus on that.
At the end of the day remember that your boss is your boss, not your master. He can't control your ability to learn, he can't control your self-esteem, he can't control your ability do your job properly. Learn, do your job and try to improve yourself every day, little by little.
That way you will start to earn the respect from your boss and improve your chances to climb that corporate ladder he already climbed. And if your boss really is incompetent your time won't be wasted: you will have a good ground to search for a better job in another company. So, at the end of the day, you can't lose. ■