Is it possible to work for a boss who is critical of everything you do? If so, how?
Going to work should be an experience we look forward to every day. (You are dong your best, not slacking off, and others know that as well. ) Can you survive in the work place when your boss makes you feel you can do nothing well? He or she looks for anything to criticize.
Fortunately I have not had this experience but I wondered if someone has and how they handled it.
To stay in a work environment where your boss criticizes everything you do is the equivalent of staying in a relationship that is "verbally abusive". Eventually your self-esteem wears down along with your confidence. No one would advise you to stay in a marriage or relationship like this. Why do it for a job?
Sometimes you have to accept the fact that where you are at is not a "good fit" no matter how much money they may be paying you. Life is too short to be stressed out every single day.
Go where you are appreciated and not where you are tolerated.
A lot of the criticism is born out of the bosses low self esteem. Many bosses have that attitude toward employees. The lower the employee feels, the higher the boss feels. It's totally ignorant but that's how the system is set up. All bosses are not like that but they all have egos. To work under anyone is already a disadvantage. Everybody has the power to be independent. Why would anyone want to live at the mercy of others?
I worked for 7 years as a catering supervisor in a university. My boss was an out and out bully who had no people skills what so ever, and this not only with staff but also customers. Using my own intiative one day I took a trolley laden with food and drinks outside the building in which I was manning the coffee bar with another supervisor to supply the goods to parents waiting with their off spring to register and sort out accommodation. It was a boiling hot summers day and the queue was slow moving and long. I made the decision to take the loaded trolley out to the people gasping in the heat as no one dare leave the queue in case they lost their place and were staggering into the coffee bar parched and feeling less than great after being in the sun for so long. I arranged also for another supervisor to keep running in and out with extra supplies as I was selling out so quickly. I think in just over an hour I made almost 200 pounds for the catering department. My boss saw what I had done and came up with some ridiculous comment about not charging staff for cups of tea and coffee and that was it. later in the day a lecturer saw what I had done and asked my boss to pass on his thanks to me as I did just what was needed. When she eventually got round to mentioning it she made it feel like a slap in the face instead of a compliment, but I didn´t let that get to me as I knew I had done a first class job. However she continued to treat me badly until one day I followed her into her office after she had screamed at me across the refectory and failed to give me time to respond to her very unfair and unjust criticism, to be honest she really showed her true colours that time and lots of customers were disgusted by her outburst. Once in the office I closed the door and explained that we were 3 supervisors short that day and I was trying to cover their posts as well as my own , and was just about to ask someone to fill up the drinks machine when she laid into me and had she any idea of how bad that made me feel. She said she would take what I said on board, but things never changed and in the end I suffered very badly from depression and when I changed departments was in such a bad state that my first day on the new job I had to go home as I suffered really badly from anxiety and ended up on pills for a few months. I lay the blame solely on this bad boss and declared I would never stick a job with a boss who valued me so little just to pay the bills ,ever again.
I will answer your question simply. Is it possible to work for a boss who is critical of everything you do? Yes, it is possible. What you need to determine is, is it worth it? A great variable here is the method in which criticism is delivered. If it is delivered in a manner that allows you to learn and grow professionally, then the criticism would have more a more positive effect. If a boss likes to berate employees and belittle them I would not think that would be worth tolerating.
If you decide that you can deal with a boss criticizing everything you do, you will need to be able to manage your own emotions and learn not to take criticism or feedback on performance negatively. After all, it is a job. An employer has a right to ask that a job be done in a certain way. So, you need to be able to separate criticism on performance from your value as a person. Learn to understand your employer's expectations.
That being said, if you are unfortunate and have a boss that likes to criticize everything you do just to hear his/her own voice, you need to determine what's in it for you? Is the job you have providing income and benefits to offset the negative criticism? Are you able to listen the criticism and maintain your value as a person? There are some who are very successful with this. In this time of high unemployment, there are probably more people in this situation than any of us would like to think about.
One final thought is we all learn by experience. So, the boss who provides feedback in a positive way that allows you to grow was most likely mentored by another leader who trained him/her in the same way. By the same token, the boss who berates and belittles may also be following in the footsteps of the one who managed him/her. Only leaders who carefully consider who they want to be and how they want to lead can get themselves out of this trap.
To me the question is whether the boss has any point, is finding some sort of problem, or is just being a nag.
If he is coming up with real issues you need to up your game.
If he is just a nag you should address it politely. (yes he might take it the wrong way and your out a job)
Sometimes if a person has been promoted they had your job before you had it and they have a system they think everyone should follow.
If it is a good system and gets better results try it. If it is just a difference between two ways to do the same thing and the results are equal point this out.
Regardless if you can't resolve it I suggest sending out your resume. We spend more time at work than we do anywhere else so it should be tolerable if not fun.
Yeah it is very hard to cope with a boss who is always searching for your faults. I know this very well as I’ve worked under such a terrible character for quite some time. But no matter whatever the situation is you have to move forward if you want to be a good employee. There are certain situations with regards to boss who is critical about everything:
Firstly you need to see whether the boss is critical with everyone or not. If that is the case, then you need not to worry. Because you are not the only one who is feeling the heat but everyone else is. In that case you just need to carry on with your own work fulfilling all the requirements that the boss gives you.
If the boss is only critical with the things that you do then the situation is a bit tricky. There can be two cases here- either the boss doesn’t like you at all or he wants more from you every time as you are a good employee. In the second case if you catch the boss’s mentality then there is no need to worry. Just fulfill your duty and everything will be okay. In the first case, you need to talk to the boss directly and clear everything.
Well, if you have exceptional qualities and higher knowledge than the boss, he/she will be quick to notice your befits and value of you in the work place. But it all depends on the way you conduct yourself to be noticed because there are those rogue bosses who will even take advantage of your humbleness!
To work in a place where boss is always criticizing is like having food with no salt. It always turns out to be very disgusting . It brings down self-confidence, makes you feel humiliated and inferior. But it is not something to be accepted with a smile, but meant to be tacked tactfully.
It is necessary to find out the flaws and loopholes in the work and character of your boss. Then tactfully try to bring it to surface in front of a number of other colleages. This can probably work .
Anyway good question.
I'm sorry to hear about your situation.
I've had this experience myself too personally.
No matter how well I performed or how hard I tried, my boss still had something against me.
I tried to endure this for about a year, as things never really changed, eventually I decided to leave.
Now I'm working in a new company under an awesome boss and I feel so happy.
Wish you all the best!
My first job after university many years ago involved a boss who was not only incapable of doing anything but criticise, she would also steal credit for anything good done by me or my colleagues.
It was a terrible time, but a great insight into how *not* to manage a team.
Having walked out after three months, I would have to say the answer to your question is 'no'. Working in a team that supports, encourages and develops you is a far nicer place to be.
not realy, if he's going to be a jerk, then i have no problem quitting unless its my fault, then i'll accept the criticism
Well, let's see. I've had a CEO who banged his shoe on my desk like Krushchev and another boy genius who once told another business owner in our building, "I can rip off my employees easier than I can my customers."
Baby did a bad bad thing as the song goes. The shoe banger got his butt reamed out when I went over his head to the owner of the business and informed him that the shoe banger was out of control. The shoe banger got a warning from HIS boss.
The boy genius? He knew he couldn't put one past me. He threatened to fire me a half dozen times. So, as I do with most men twice my size, I called his bluff.
I told him to fire me and as soon as he did, I'd make sure our DOL knew about his attitude and threats. He backed off. Later, we found out he crashed in the 401K and took out the payroll deductions after it crashed. For that he got an SEC fine. Some men just never learn not to fight Karma.
In retrospect, there is too too much stress with these high maintenance tyrants. I told the shoe banger after I secured a better job at higher pay I was "divorcing him" and it wouldn't costs me nearly as much as it did my divorce from my ex.
It is a very common thing in a workplace and almost every single person endures such bosses. But for me one of my most critical boss turned out to be a blessing in disguise. He criticized me so much for each and everything that I had to extend myself so much that I actually got into almost all the domains of my job. Eventually I became a jack of all trades and master of none. But then you know he promoted me and sent me to another city to set up an office all by myself. That was when I realized my strength and my learnings that I got from his criticism. So coming back to your question, try considering a few things before you think of blasting him off. Do not think or try anything which may seem damaging to your career or professional life. Be professional and proactive in your approach as the best way to handle criticism is through professionalism. Besides look at the criticism as a growth opportunity because you are surely learning lot of things from his behavior. Also a very important thing which I generally tell others and also adhere to myself. It is that you should never, under any circumstances, take things personally. Of course until and unless it is a personal remark or a comment and then the whistleblower policy of your company will come handy. Also one of the factors your boss is irritated with you could be that they are irritated by their own bosses. Just try to remain calm as much as you can and control your emotions. Don’t let your hurt feelings impact your performance and if you feel the criticism was unwarranted or given in an inappropriate location, consider discussing the situation with your boss.
Hello there. I think one need to take the criticism positively. Do not try to take it as a personal attack. Always try to assume that your boss has good intention. Furthermore develop an attitude where you see the criticism as a form help to assist you to improve on your productivity
It is possible to work for such a boss, but you will not be happy and it will be stressful. I once worked for a boss that no matter what you did it wasn't fast enough and could have been done better. He once went on a two week vacation and I was in charge. We got more work done that he expected, but when he returned he hid all of the chairs. Needless to say i was beyond frustrated, I disliked him and knew I could do better. I have worked for good bosses and bad bosses. Bosses need to realize that you get more out of people by treating them fairly.
As a Employer a big no-no is putting people down or un-constructive criticism. He should want employees to understand that every person is important to the function of the business. Additionally, every person in your life is important. Putting employees down makes employees wonder what the boss actually think of them and immediately breaks the trust that you have worked so hard to build.
Regardless of the level of emotional independence one has, it is bound to happen: You will encounter the “Emotional Sharks.”, in this case your boss. What to do then? Of course you have to defend abilities to fend off the attack, then you can stand your ground. Be cautious few have the capabilities to do so. Some sharks are masters in their game of manipulation. They catch you in a low emotional state. As if they smell it.
Sometimes you have to live among sharks. Meaning you cannot get away from them, or fend them off, because of a obligation. Of course everything has a limit and nothing is black and white. So, even the strongest of relationships must be broken when hurtful action becomes abuse that seriously affects your health. However, in some situations, you feel you have to stay in the same area with the shark. Especially if they are your boss at work, and you are able to manage without being permanently or seriously scarred. Then you have to cope. I have found a video with a few good tips on how to deal with these predators.
A great short video and tips on Dealing With Difficult & Annoying People
Bottom line, it’s either BE BROKEN or BREAK THEM. What are the facts underlying the criticism? Simply state, “ That’s Interesting, why would you say such a thing?” This will throw him off path, but forced to explain himself by you placing it back in his ballpark. Maintain your dignity either way you will WIN by drowning the shark or you losing your job, but you walk away with your dignity and emotional independence in tack to carry you forward.
It´s okay to be criticize by a boss if we made a mistake in work. But not too much, if everything that you do have been criticized without explanation, then maybe He or She have a problem with you. Ask Him or Her in private, so that you can understand the situation you are in.
I already have experienced such situation and i am very down and depressed. but, i fight for it. i didn´t give up. For me, its like a challenge of being in a person like that kind of treatment. I learned that patience, understantanding and heart to heart communication in work is one of the most important thing in a workplace we may engage with.
In a team there shouldn´t be only mind to mind communication but the most important is heart to heart as well.
There are many angles to take in a situation like this, however, the most effective strategy would be to flip the perception that this is negative on your emotions and efforts as an employee.
What I mean by this is to simply re-wire your brain (thought process) and perceive it all to be advantageous for both you and them. An example of this could be to thinking that he/she is helping you become a number one employee.
I think that this is a very subjective question. There are too many types of mental mindsets of people to pigeon-hole everybody into the one category by saying it is or isn't impossible to work under somebody that is highly critical.
Personally, I respond extremely well to criticism as see it as an opportunity to learn rather than take it personally. However, some of my colleagues (working under the same Managing Partner) struggle with his brazen and cut-throat approach.
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