At one point or another, we have all worked for a jerk. Trending analysis, client feedback and underground communication clearly indicate that mismanaged employees and boundary violations are on the rise. Managing through tough times and poor leaders is often time more difficult than the work itself. Poor leadership can range from an immediate supervisor to poor HR leadership. Noone is exempt.
Taking charge of your career and disengaging from negative forces, including a jerk of a boss is within your reach. As a Career Strategist with an organic and practiced track record of problem solving, I am focusing this weeks blog on the employee relations aspect of managing poor leadership, self preservation and maintaining your sanity.
5 Strategies to Activate NOW
Venting is short lived whereas documenting is soothing, has long range positive effects and will set you up for a chronicle of events if you need to take legal action.. Hand write your discontent in a strategy journal. This is a journal specifically dedicated to you, your work, your accomplishments and your discontent. Keep it is a safe place and use it daily. Date, time stamp and openly journal details of what is occurring. Always be sure to credit yourself for one or two accomplishments per writing. When leadership is lacking, you need to start truly leading yourself. This means crediting your daily accomplishments and cheering for yourself!
#2 Keep the Personal Out of Professional
Remind yourself that you accepted your position to offer professional skills in lieu of pay. That is it! Nothing more! While it is a bonus if you make a friend or two in the workplace, your primary focus must be on your skills and honing them. If you have a jerk as a boss or a leader who leads you to feel uncomfortable, steer clear. You are under no obligation to take part. If you think you can out maneuver the person…perhaps you can but you will be far better served if you develop a strategy focusing on your accomplishments and becoming successful than trying to “play the game”.
#3 Remove Fear from your Vocabulary
There is a reason the famous quote “there is nothing to fear but fear itself” has stood the test of time. Use it. Get out from behind your fears and exercise your courage. This does not mean randomly acting out, but rather, put a plan in place on making your move to either sustain the existing workplace dysfunction OR exit the company. Planning your work and working your plan is powerful. Have dedicated hobbies outside of work. This will give you something positive and productive to look forward to and feed your focus on you.
#4 Stop living above your means NOW
If you cannot quit your job due to financial restraints, start cutting back on your luxury spending and live beneath your means. Start paying yourself first by banking as much as you can. Make a game out of stashing away extra money. You will gain power over yourself which will bring a heightened sense of confidence into the workplace. Your boss may be curious about seeing a change in your however, never needs to know why the change. Remember Rule #2??? Keep personal to yourself.
#5 Take Action.
If you have been spoken to inappropriately, asked to divulge personal information, felt emotionally violated to the point of crying or coerced to conform in what may be perceived as a borderline “touchy feely, cultish” environment, stand your ground and exercise your voice. The EEOC is always available to file charges especially if on the job allegations are not being dealt with. Environmental harassment is NEVER ok. Once you speak up, you are protected by the law from any further wrongdoing. Get Moving!
For more information: www.eeoc.gov.