Do you have a toxic boss? Checking in on how you’re feeling is the simplest approach to answer this question. You are in a hostile work environment if you are scared, frustrated, and dread going to work because you will be belittled, humiliated, disregarded, and cut down.
Toxic bosses are typically under a lot of strain, enjoy being in charge, and thrive on two things: emotional reaction and attention. They thrive on their ability to manipulate others. Unfortunately, while the toxic boss may achieve success by instilling fear in their employees, they will also have a shorter shelf-life in terms of long-term success.
Just know that you are not alone. The number one reason people leave their jobs is because they dislike their employer. A toxic boss can be found practically in every workplace. A survey in 2017 by the Workplace Bullying Institute defined this sort of workplace emotional abuse as the “repeated mistreatment of an employee by one or more employees or boss; abusive conduct that is: threatening, humiliating, or intimidating, work sabotage, or verbal abuse.” And here are few strategies that might help you.
Make a decision: stay or leave
Making a realistic decision about whether to stay or resign is the first step in coping with a toxic employer. If you feel stuck, assess how seriously the circumstance is affecting you emotionally and mentally. If you decide to stay, you must create some coping mechanisms to mitigate the impact of their behaviour on your mental health.
Avoid becoming a target – or, by extension, a victim
If you decide to stay. You might think that implies keeping your head down and staying out of trouble (which is sometimes important), but it can also imply the inverse. Carry out your responsibilities – and do it properly. Consider going as far as you can to assist your boss’s success (but don’t feel obligated to suck up to them). It will make you less of a target, and people will notice your professionalism despite lousy leadership – and believe me, you will not be the only one to notice.
Yes, you might make your employer look better in the eyes of his or her superiors, and they might even get promoted as a result. However, if they get promoted away from you, it may not be such a bad thing.
Set your limits.
Examine how your boss treats you objectively. Make a list of the facts. When you approach your boss with facts and a strong physical posture, you will say less and get more done. The more nervous you are, the more you tend to talk. When you have facts, you can set better limits. You can stick to the facts without trying to persuade your boss or elicit empathy or understanding from him/her.
Facts are the knowledge you require because knowledge is power. You must inform your boss that you will no longer tolerate the negative facts on your list regarding how you are treated. If your boss becomes agitated or begins to act out, leave the conversation and escalate to the person above your boss. Inform your boss that you will be addressing your concerns elsewhere because he or she is unable to communicate rationally.
Tell management and HR about your boss’s toxic behavior
Let your superiors and human resources know, through documentation and meetings with coworkers and your boss, that you have done everything you can to cope with and reduce your boss’s flagrantly abusive behaviour. Explain how bullying has affected your physical, emotional, and mental health, as well as how it has harmed your work performance. Formally file a complaint and allow human resources to conduct an investigation. In the meantime, you may need to take a paid leave to avoid further abuse once your boss is aware that he or she is being investigated, or, if possible, continue to work as usual and give your boss the opportunity to demonstrate some change.
Remember, it’s not forever
The lure of more power, prestige, and control drives many toxic leaders to change positions frequently, so you may not have to deal with the toxicity for long. While you wait for them, work on improving your skills and expanding your network so that you can find a new job if necessary.
Finally, you are not alone in wondering why organisations tolerate toxic people in positions of leadership. The issue is that these dysfunctional leaders are often very skilled at projecting a successful image upwards in the organisation. They may be skilled at political manoeuvring, ignoring or blaming others for past errors, and manipulating people’s emotions.