We know that most people don't leave bad jobs, they leave bad managers. You've had your fair share of frustrating conversations with your boss, and interactions that left you less than thrilled. We've all been there!
But what do you do when your boss is consistently difficult? I'm here to help.
I help clients daily work through conflict with their managers, and one common theme persists; they're not communicating enough with their managers. While they may have a semi-regular 1:1, it either doesn't happy or they're not taking enough advantage of their time together.
If you aren't coming to your discussions with your manager with an agenda, you're doing it wrong. They are not your therapist! You are there to show them the problems you need their help with and to share your accomplishments. That's about it.
I'm a big fan of recognizing the personality of your boss and adjusting accordingly. Have you asked your boss what their priorities are? Have you asked them for feedback recently? If not, it's time.
You don't have to be close friends with your manager, and in fact I advise against it. But you should be cordial, kind and clear about how they can help you and what you need from them. It is their job to support you and it is yours to tell them how.
You can learn how to be more assertive and direct in my Career Confidence Course, Advocating for Yourself.
I often felt like my employees didn't take the time to understand what I was asking of them. Of course, I knew they were busy or they just didn't prioritize it, but it's my people who tried to understand why I was asking them to do something that really succeeded.
If you have an issue with something your boss has said or done, don't simply sweep it under the rug. This doesn't mean you should confront them every time they annoy you, but if it's an issue you know will fester you need to discuss it with them. Too often we expect people to read our minds. Calmly reach out and see if they can chat, or make note of it for your next 1:1. Don't let your emotions get in the way of how to best handle an issue. Try to give them the benefit of the doubt, express your concern, and allow them to respond. Make sure to ask follow up questions so that they feel heard. This will model how you want to be treated.
No relationship is easy and they all take work. Considering how much we each interact with our managers, we need to make this relationship a priority. For more help with your manager, check out my Advocating for Yourself Course.