Bosses are like a box of chocolate, you never know which one you're gonna get. Some bosses are like a dream come true – caring, intelligent, morale-boosting, confident, and many other positive attributes we appreciate and hope for in a leader. Others, on the flip side, can be disrespectful, arrogant, unfair, uncompassionate, and even downright mean. All the personality traits that make a boss a pain in the you-know-what.

If you have a boss you simply can't tolerate or want to prepare for the chance that you may one day be burdened with one, here are 3 ways to deal with a boss you can't stand. It's all about how you handle things to make your work life satisfactory.


1. Communicate

Walking around the office huffing and puffing or wishing your boss's bad behavior away will only make you more aggravated and will become contagious, giving co-workers a negative vibe. Bosses are people too, and just like you may take a friend aside when there's an issue on your mind, you can request to talk to your boss one-on-one to discuss what's bothering you.

As per Salary, "Schedule a meeting with your boss and bring your list of grievances with you. In the most professional (read: non-accusatory) way possible, refresh your boss' brain about each incident and how it negatively affected you."

Your boss may very well appreciate the open honesty and may not have even known that their actions and words were upsetting or causing a problem. As Forbes notes, "When you approach them with respect and with a genuine desire to make things work better, you can open the door to whole new levels of trust, collaboration and outcomes. A door that will remain permanently closed otherwise."

That said, if the issues run deeper, it may be time to take the matter to human resources. According to Money & Career Cheat Sheet, "An annoying or incompetent boss is one thing, but some managers really do cross the line. If your boss sexually harasses employees, is abusive, is discriminating against you, breaks the law, or engages in other unacceptable behavior, it's time to talk to HR."

2. See it From Their Side

Bosses have a lot on their plate and sometimes their own burdens, stress levels, and pressures can trickle down to affecting the employees. As Money & Career Cheat Sheet suggests, "Getting frustrated with your boss is easy, but before you rush to judge, try to look at things from his perspective. There's a lot about their job that you don't know about or see, so don't assume that they're out to get you."

Salary adds, "He may be micromanaging you, but that might stem from his own boss breathing down his neck. By having some sympathy for your boss and all the pressure that he is under to perform, you may be able to tolerate his tics better."

3. Focus on the Positive

There's got to be something going for this man or woman that has propelled them to the position they're in today. It can't all be terrible, right? While it's easy to get all-consumed with what's wrong, taking time to hone in on the good may help you better tolerate and appreciate your boss and let the small stuff roll off your back in times of dismay.

Your boss may have a great sense of humor, lets you leave early for the kids' soccer games, or runs meetings really effectively. When things are rough, think about the qualities that make your boss special and likeable.

One way to steer towards the positive side is to understand their motivation. As per LifeHack, "If you can find a way to help him with his objectives then maybe you can work around his faults. A good rule at work is to help your boss to succeed – whether you like him or not. Other people will see you do this and it works to your credit – especially if they know that your boss is difficult."

Finding a mentor other than your boss can also aid in better understanding your boss's perspective and behaviors while helping you develop better business skills and interpersonal relationships in your career. Lifehacker notes, "A mentor, even a manager in another department, can often help you understand your boss's pressures and challenges in a non-threatening way. The whole point of having a mentor is to help you learn, grow, and develop your skills—which include working with difficult people."

We may be able to choose the career we want, but the boss we get stuck with may not always be what we signed up for. Use these tips to navigate your way towards tolerance and a determination to succeed no matter the challenges (people included) placed in your path.

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Over two years into the most momentous event in our lives the world has changed forever … Some of us have PTSD from being locked up at home, some are living like everything’s going to end tomorrow, and the rest of us are merely trying to get by. When the pandemic hit we entered a perpetual state of vulnerability, but now we’re supposed to return to normal and just get on with our lives.

What does that mean? Packed bars, concerts, and grocery shopping without a mask feel totally strange. We got used to having more rules over our everyday life, considering if we really had to go out or keeping Zooming from our living rooms in threadbare pajama bottoms.

The work-from-home culture changed it all. Initially, companies were skeptical about letting employees work remotely, automatically assuming work output would fall and so would the quality. To the contrary, since March of 2020 productivity has risen by 47%, which says it all. Employees can work from home and still deliver results.

There are a number of reasons why everyone loves the work from home culture. We gained hours weekly that were wasted on public transport, people saved a ton of money, and could work from anywhere in the world. Then there were the obvious reasons like wearing sweats or loungewear all week long and having your pets close by. Come on, whose cat hasn’t done a tap dance on your keyboard in the middle of that All Hands Call!

Working from home grants the freedom to decorate your ‘office’ any way you want. But then people needed a change of environment. Companies began requesting their employees' RTO, thus generating the Hybrid Work Model — a blend of in-person and virtual work arrangements. Prior to 2020, about 20% of employees worked from home, but in the midst of the pandemic, it exploded to around 70%.

Although the number of people working from home increased and people enjoyed their flexibility, politicians started calling for a harder RTW policy. President Joe Biden urges us with, “It’s time for Americans to get back to work and fill our great downtowns again.”

While Boris Johnson said, “Mother Nature does not like working from home.'' It wasn’t surprising that politicians wanted people back at their desks due to the financial impact of working from the office. According to a report in the BBC, US workers spent between $2,000 - $5,000 each year on transport to work before the pandemic.

That’s where the problem lies. The majority of us stopped planning for public transport, takeaway coffee, and fresh work-appropriate outfits. We must reconsider these things now, and our wallets are paying

the price. Gas costs are at an all-time high, making public transport increase their fees; food and clothes are all on a steep incline. A simple iced latte from Dunkin’ went from $3.70 to $3.99 (which doesn’t seem like much but 2-3 coffees a day with the extra flavors and shots add up to a lot), while sandwiches soared by 14% and salads by 11%.

This contributes to the pressure employees feel about heading into the office. Remote work may have begun as a safety measure, but it’s now a savings measure for employees around the world.

Bloomberg are offering its US staff a $75 daily commuting stipend that they can spend however they want. And other companies are doing the best they can. This still lends credence to ‘the great resignation.’ Initially starting with the retail, food service, and hospitality sectors which were hard hit during the pandemic, it has since spread to other industries. By September 2021, the US Bureau of Labor Statistics reported 4.4 million resignations.

That’s where the most critical question lies…work from home, work from the office or stick to this new hybrid world culture?

Borris Johnson thinks, “We need to get back into the habit of getting into the office.” Because his experience of working from home “is you spend an awful lot of time making another cup of coffee and then, you know, getting up, walking very slowly to the fridge, hacking off a small piece of cheese, then walking very slowly back to your laptop and then forgetting what it was you’re doing.”

While New York City Mayor Eric Adams says you “can't stay home in your pajamas all day."

In the end, does it really matter where we work if efficiency and productivity are great? We’ve proven that companies can trust us to achieve the same results — or better! — and on time with this hybrid model. Employees can be more flexible, which boosts satisfaction, improves both productivity and retention, and improves diversity in the workplace because corporations can hire through the US and indeed all over the world.

We’ve seen companies make this work in many ways, through virtual lunches, breakout rooms, paint and prosecco parties, and — the most popular — trivia nights.

As much as we strive for normalcy, the last two years cannot simply be erased. So instead of wiping out this era, it's time to embrace the change and find the right world culture for you.

What would get you into the office? Free lunch? A gym membership? Permission to hang out with your dog? Some employers are trying just that.

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Did you hear about the Great Resignation? It isn’t over. Just over two years of pandemic living, many offices are finally returning to full-time or hybrid experiences. This is causing employees to totally reconsider their positions.

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