Dealing with a Disrespectful Boss

To deal with a disrespectful boss you must avoid insubordination while asserting your right to be treated with respect. Disrespectful behavior can include gossiping about you, taunting you for mistakes or appearance, harassing you, discriminating against you or violating your privacy. Employers can be held liable for harassment of employees by supervisors.


    • 1

      Request a meeting with your human resources director, your boss's supervisor or the company owner.

    • 2

      Compile a list of incidents where you feel the boss has treated you inappropriately. Include incidents of your boss raising his voice, touching you without your permission, criticizing your work unfairly or sending you inappropriate messages.

    • 3

      Explain how your boss treats you during your meeting with the company official. Show her any documentation you have, such as emails or a list of incidents. Ask this person to meet with your boss to hear his side of the story.

    • 4

      Listen to any recommendations provided during your meeting. You may be asked about your part in any confrontations, whether your work is sub-par and if you may harbor an unfair attitude toward your boss.

    • 5

      Ask about your options if the situation does not improve. The company may have an escalation policy that involves meeting with your boss's supervisor, filing a formal complaint or escalating the complaint to the company owner or president.

    • 6

      Continue to monitor your interactions with your boss. If the official you meet with does not offer to meet with you and your boss together, ask for such a meeting.

    • 7

      Decide after the second meeting if you desire to escalate your complaint. If you decide to wait, keep a written journal of your interactions with your boss. Do your part to resolve any work-related issues your boss brought up during your meeting to ensure you have no role in the situation.

    • 8

      File a formal complaint with the company if you can't resolve the situation. Consult an attorney if you feel your rights or privacy have been violated and the company is not taking appropriate action.

Tips & Warnings

  • Remain calm during any altercations to avoid the appearance of disrespect toward your boss.
  • Call the police if you feel physically threatened.
  • If your boss touches you inappropriately, tell him to stop and immediately report the incident to the appropriate person in your company.
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