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Avoid Burnout Tip – How to Survive a Bad Boss

June 22, 2010

Working for a person who is ‘out to get you’ is disheartening.  Especially when you are new to a school, or there is a new boss, and you don’t know what the ground rules are in this situation.

First of all, it’s important to be impeccably professional on your part. Sinking into a visible conflict with your principal isn’t going to make you look good.  Remember to breathe around this person so you can keep your composure.

The Career Know-how website has some really great tips for working with a jerk for a boss – and I think they are good tips whether you are an educator or not.

Here are some tips in the meantime.

Reframe your perspective –  try to see that your boss is just your boss, and has a role to play.  The boss is the person with the power, so you must either learn to cope, or find another place to work. Pay close attention and analyze what it is your boss is getting at with his/her behavior. Unfortunately, bosses aren’t always necessarily effective communicators.   Just remember, you control your emotions, your behaviors.  Nobody else can take that from you unless you let them.

Remember, people don’t change – don’t expect your boss to.  Accept this person for who they are.  You do not have to like this person as a condition of your employment – you just have to work for them.

Document everything. Especially if you have what is referred to as an ‘extreme boss.’  This is important.

Find someone to confide in outside of your workplace. Do I need to explain why?  I think this one is obvious.

Sometimes all you can do is get through it.  Fortunately, administrators tend to be a nomadic bunch!  If it doesn’t look as though a particularly bad boss is going to move on, then perhaps you will want to.  Believe in yourself, and don’t let it get you down.

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