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Public Reprimands Insults Bullies Feedback

I work at an oil refinery and was in a meeting the other day when the plant manager told me to sit down and shut up in front of everyone else. This is typical of how he talks to me. How should I deal with him?

When dealing with a manager who is a graduate of the "sit-down-and-shut-up" school of management, the best first step is to sit down with him.

Let him know that his remarks are counterproductive and you want them to stop. Be specific in describing the comments and behaviors that are upsetting you, and use examples along the way. Let him know exactly how you feel about these comments, and add that you hope the problem will end here. It can also be helpful to let him see how he can profit by treating you more humanely, such as by lacing your comments with words like "productivity," "performance," "output," and "teamwork."

On a broader basis, his comments may indicate that he is dissatisfied with something about your performance. Ask him if there are some areas in which he feels you need to improve. If this is the case, ask for specific suggestions, and then follow them and let him know you are doing so.

If his bullying continues, you should meet with his boss. The irony is that a manager who tells his employees to sit down and shut up is actually the individual who should be doing just that. Hopefully his boss knows this.

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