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Bullies Insults Assertiveness Insecurity Feedback Condescending Treatment Power Plays and Players Public Reprimands

My boss gave me a fairly basic project which I recently completed. I was at lunch with her and three of my fellow employees, and I happened to bring up this project, and she snidely said it was insignificant, meaningless, and not even worth looking at. I was embarrassed, but I did not lash back, even though I wanted to. How do you deal with a boss like this?

Your bossís behavior qualifies her for another title, namely a bully. It is classic bullying behavior to insult, humiliate, and degrade employees, especially in front of others.

The problem is that you cannot turn a bully into a caring, compassionate, and respectful leader. The insecurities, self-doubts, and unfilled needs that lurk deep in your bossís psyche are well beyond your control.

However, even if you cannot impact what your boss is, you may be able to impact what she does. One option is to ignore her bullying completely. If she senses that you are not bothered by her antics, she will not sense any gratification by bullying you. That may cause her to ply her wares elsewhere.

A second yet riskier option is premised on the fact that most bullies do not like to deal with people who stand up to them. This option calls for a strong and businesslike reaction in which you firmly express your dissatisfaction with her specific behavior, along with a clear statement that you expect it to stop. You should say this right on the spot, or as soon after as feasible.

Hopefully there are senior level managers who recognize the major risks associated with having a bully in the corporate china shop.

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