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How to Recognise a Toxic Boss

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The perfect boss doesn’t exist, just like the perfect employee doesn’t exist. Always bear in mind that everyone has their flaws. However, with good working relationships being so important for work satisfaction, if you’re unsure about your relationship with your boss here is how to recognise the signs of a toxic boss.

 

Unprofessional Behaviour

This one is a no brainer. If your boss acts completely unprofessional with you then they are classed as a toxic boss. Unprofessional behaviour falls under serious misconduct such as, sexual harassment, bullying, using curse words and other less serious behaviours like being unable to make eye contact and interrupting and allowing others to interrupt them.

If your boss behaves in this way you will need to contact your HR department immediately. It’s completely unacceptable behaviour and you will need to address it sooner rather than later.

 

Doesn’t Listen

Anyone that doesn’t listen in the work place is going to be very difficult to work with, but if it’s your boss, this will be bring so many issues to your working life. As an employee it is important for you to be heard by your superiors so that you feel valued and are appreciated. Not being heard will demotivate you but it will also make it very hard for you to confide in your boss as well.

Unrealistic Expectations

Good managers will always want to push you beyond your comfort zone to encourage you to succeed, but a toxic manager will just push you to the point of work overload and make you feel stressed rather than motivated. If your boss has you working to unrealistic deadlines or expects you to abandon your workload for what they feel is priority to them, this will create a very toxic environment for you.

 

Ungrateful

At the end of the day, you are paid to do a job and every time you do that job you can’t expect praise. However, a boss that can never say “Thank you” or “Good job” that’s a clear indication of a toxic manager. It’s okay if your boss expects you to do things for him/her without a big song and dance thanking you for it, but the odd time it’s important to have communication of the fact they are grateful for your help.

 

Micromanaging

This is one of the most toxic work environments any professional can be expected to work in. Having a boss look over their shoulder at you and being made to feel like you are being constantly watched is very stressful and it’s the perfect way to destroy productivity.

 

Being a Fun Boss

It’s nice to be able to get along with your boss but if you feel your boss is more of a friend than a manager, you may have a problem. It’s important for leaders to be admired and respected as superiors but a manger who is more interested in being your pal will never be someone you look up to. It also makes any kind of constructive criticism from them very hard to take. Often if a manger is too friendly when it actually comes to managing you and giving you criticism, you will either not take their comments seriously and brush it off or find yourself offended and hurt by their comments because you thought they were your friend. Blurred lines between boss and friend is an indication of toxicity.

Takes Credit but Never Responsibility

A manger is there to lead and celebrate your successes, not make you do the work for their benefit. A manager who can take credit for your work but blames you for their mistakes is undoubtedly a toxic boss. A boss should never use your successes as their own and should always be held responsible for their own mistakes.

 

Never Being Wrong

This type of boss reminds me of the Roald Dahl character in Matilda, Miss Trunchbull. This quote in particular…

“I'm right and you're wrong, I'm big and you're small, and there's nothing you can do about it.” ― Roald Dahl, Matilda.

It can be hard to work for and communicate with a boss who feels they’re right all the time and doesn’t accept your views. It can be a very toxic environment for someone working with a boss like this. If your boss is anything like Miss Trunchbull, you really need to accept your boss could be toxic.

If your boss does any of these things and it makes you feel uncomfortable and uneasy in work, you should approach your HR Department with your concerns. If you feel you’ve done all you can to resolve the issue and nothing has come of it, it may be time to search for a new job. Send your CV to us in Sigmar Recruitment and we can help find you a more suitable position.

 

Posted by Clare Reynolds on 7 August 2018

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