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6 Tips On How To Deal With A Difficult Boss

By Scarlett @BubbleJobs

The working world is full of lots of weird and wonderful people that need to be able to work together. An important person to get on with in the workplace is the boss because, at the end of the day, they’re the person that can have a big impact on your career progression

But unfortunately things don’t always run smoothly and you can find that your boss hasn’t got the best management style in the world. If this is the case then you need to make sure that you deal with the situation appropriately. To help you out, we’ve come up with six tips on how to deal with a difficult boss.

Make Sure That It’s Not You

This might be a difficult one to admit to, but before you get all worked up, make sure that it’s not you being a tad sensitive. Remember that the business world can be a tough place and your boss will probably be a busy person – so if they don’t always behave exactly how they should, try not to take it too personally.

Your boss’ main role is to guide you and make sure that you’re doing what you should, not to be your best friend. That said; if your boss’ behaviour is out of order, then you need to deal with it in the right manner!

Don’t Let Them Get In The Way Of Your Work Performance

If you’re working under poor management, then it’s very easy to throw the towel in and stop putting your all into your work – but this is probably the worse thing you could do, as it shines you in a bad light.

If there are any problems in the future with your boss you want to show that you’re squeaky clean, not that you’ve given in. So make sure you stay ahead of the game and get your work done – this will help you out in the long run.


Give It A Bit Of Time

We all have bad days, weeks or even months where family issues or other external things might affect your performance in the work place. If your boss has suddenly started acting out of the ordinary or being a little abrupt with you, there may be a valid reason why.

So before you go to someone above your manager or make any rash decisions, give it a bit of time. It may be that your boss is busy and needs to get on top of things or they may have other problems.

 Learn To Adapt

You should never suffer in silence with these sorts of matters, but if there are ways of making your boss’ life easier then try and do it. Remember, everyone is different, so it’s important to adapt to suit each other. If you can bite your lip or put that little bit more effort in then make sure you do it – this could really help you out in the long run.

 Keep A Record Of Communication

If your boss has been difficult for a month or so and you feel that they may be behaving inappropriately, then you need to make sure that you keep a log of your communication. This means that if you ever need to discuss any issues in the future then you’ve got some hard evidence of what’s been going on.

 Keep Professional

This is the most important one out of all of the previous points – if your boss is behaving inappropriately then do not lower yourself to their level. It can be difficult to not get emotional about the situation – because that’s how you would deal with it in a personal circumstance, but you have to remember that you’re in the workplace. So no matter what, keep your cool and your professionalism –  this will stop any issues escalating into a full blown row!

So there we go, six tips on how to deal with a difficult boss. If you’ve got any difficult boss stories or helpful tips, feel free to comment below or tweet us on @BubbleJobs.




  1. Exocet

    In my experience, I think it is worth observing how the difficult boss interacts with others who do what you do, or are of the same ‘rank’. If the boss is similarly abrupt, disinterested or cold, perhaps even openly critical (without at least some reassurance and positivity!) then take some comfort in that it probably isn’t you that the boss is unhappy about. If you feel worried about the situation, you could consider quietly and privately bringing it up, asking if there is anything that you’ve done to upset or offend them. I have done this before, and it turned out the person didn’t realise they were being like that, apologised, and their tone changed immediately for the better. Don’t make accusations, gently ask the question and see what happens. If you go on the offensive, or go over their head without first speaking to them, I guarantee you will not get the best possible outcome.

    1. Scarlett Wilson

      Thanks for your comments! I agree that if your boss is approachable enough then you should try to resolve it yourself – however this isn’t always the case unfortunately.

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