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Lessons From A Bad Boss

This morning over breakfast, a wonderful woman I’ve just recently met was telling me about an epiphany she’d had a number of years ago during an interaction with a business coach. The coach had given her some feedback in a way that was actually anti-helpful.  And that moment my new friend thought, I could learn how to do this same thing – and do it right. That insight catalyzed her into getting an executive coaching certification and ultimately transitioning from marketing into HR.

And we started talking about how to turn negative experiences into positive ones, and I began telling her about a truly bad boss I had, many years ago – and what I learned from that experience. She said, “You should blog about that.”  So here we are.

courtesy Cory Thoman

I wrote a post a few months back called “How to Handle Having a Bad Boss,” where I proposed four options: changing the boss, changing the company, adapting or leaving.  But sometimes you can’t do any of the first three and it takes a while to figure out how to do the fourth.  So, for as long you’re stuck with a bad boss, how do you deal with it in the best possible way?  Most of us handle it badly: we cycle down into anger, resentment, or depression, and we act out by bitching and moaning and/or indulging in petty sabotage (“Oh, I’m sorry, I didn’t understand that you were asking me to code each of your documents with a different color. I thought you wanted me to put them all in different folders…”).  Which can be momentarily satisfying, but in the long run just makes everything worse.

So, here’s how to make a silk (or at least polyester) purse from the sow’s ear that is a bad boss:

1. Learn what not to do.

2. Sift for truth.

3. Develop a teflon shield.

Read the entire article….