Most people do not wake up everyday intent on doing evil.
But the way some bosses act, it makes you think they do!
There are many examples of “bad” leadership. But sometimes it gets toxic. Often times this is due to out-of-control egos or other psychological problems. Toxic behaviors can include being super-critical of others, berating staff, poor decision-making, frequent lying, undermining others, and general disrespect.
With the extreme toxic boss, you need to immediately report the behavior to Human Resources or other higher ups.
But then there is the toxic boss who comes close – but does not cross the line far enough for an HR violation. Here are suggestions for these situations:
*Protect Your Team. Do your best to keep your boss away from your team and clean up messes if the boss makes them. This could include apologizing to staff who are wronged and providing additional encouragement.
*Protect Yourself. Respectfully push back as necessary. Document problematic issues in writing in real time to your boss and others as appropriate. Take care of yourself. You may not notice it, but a toxic boss can drain your physical, emotional, and psychological energy. Self-care is even more important at this time.
*Identify Escape Routes. You hate the idea of leaving a job you may love because a boss is ruining it. But, you should start to identify options for other jobs. You may only be able to take this so long. It takes a toll. The #1 reason people leave jobs is a bad supervisor.
*Consider Escalation. Be mindful of organizational politics, and take care before you escalate this. Make sure that you have documented specific issues that others would consider egregious. “They are mean” won’t cut it. Talk with trusted colleagues who will keep things confidential.
How do toxic leaders get hired anyway? If you are a Big Boss – check out this blog with ideas on here is how to avoid hiring the wrong person.
You will make it through! Dealing with a toxic boss is very challenging, but many people have dealt with it. Try these tips to work through the challenge.