How to Work With a Demeaning Boss

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It is difficult to get along with a demeaning boss and there will be times in the workplace when the atmosphere can become nearly unbearable. Unfortunately, arguments with your boss are often unavoidable. Adopting some sensible, no-nonsense tactics to deal with your boss around the workplace can not only help secure your job but also make day-to-day dealings more pleasant. You don't have to lose your self-respect to keep your job---just stick to a few smart guidelines.

  • Pay attention to the moods, reactions, and behaviors of your boss in order to gauge when he is most likely to go off on a tirade. Daily observation of what types of situations make him regularly lose his cool will go a long way toward helping you to avoid potentially demeaning situations.

  • Watch your tongue. Never confront your boss in front of other people about his inappropriate behavior; do it calmly behind closed doors where he is more likely to assess what you are telling him without having to "back down" in front of a roomful of people.

  • Don't overreact. Sometimes bosses have bad days, just like everyone else, so avoid overreacting when yours is being unpleasant. Respond in a calm and gracious manner that makes his attitude seem all the more inappropriate.

  • Turn in a good job performance. Always do your best at work. An employee who is one of the top producers is a valuable member of the work team and your boss is not likely to forget it--even if he can't bring himself to mention it.

  • Listen before speaking. Hearing out your boss before adding your two cents will show him you respect him and are interested in his opinion. Bullies often think more highly of themselves than of everyone else; treating him respectfully does not demean you, but it may ease his need to lash out in order to feel above you.

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