Boss Thinks Everyone Is Incompetent!

Question:

We work for an owner, who constantly verbally abuses us. What can I do, and to whom can I report this constant mistreatment? It is very hard to deal with a gentleman who makes comments such as “I want you to go to Naranja and teach that manager to get her fat ass out of that chair’ this are very unpleasant remarks. He will ask something and does not let you defend yourself or explain at this time I’m looking for a job, but has not yet found one. I would like to help others by making him stop this. He thinks everyone is incompetent or ignorant; he his mentally abusing us. Please help me. Thank you.

Signed,

Desperate Employee


Answer:

Dear Desperate Employee:

The owner of your workplace apparently has a pattern of disrespect. He refers to others disrespectfully. He does not invite discussion or explanation. Can you change a person like that? Probably not. Habits do not change easily. Seeing others as not ok may be his way of boosting his ego. Conversion of character is unlikely without an emotional traumatic event that causes him to look in the mirror and see how he has hurt others, such as Ebenezer Scrooge saw in a nightmare how he hurt Bob Crachett and his family.

Does that mean you should bite your tongue or simply escape from this job? Possibly. Since this man is the owner and probably your workplace is a small operation, you can’t seek the help of a manager of Human Resources. So find another job.

Or if you feel there is hope for this man, you can request a private meeting with him. To prepare for this meeting, keep a log for several days of the words and circumstances you feel are abusive. Also prepare a list of do and don’ts of how you would like to be talked to. For example: Don’t shout at me. Don’t order me like a drill sergeant. Don’t curse at me or speak disrespectfully of others such as saying that fat ass. Do call me by name. Do listen. Do ask for me to paraphrase assignments and ask for my opinion.

Describe to him what you have written us. You might even ask him to tape record the way he talks to you and others.

Also focus on what this man really wants. As owner, he wants to make money and for things to go smoothly. Have you thought about ways you and others might cut wasted supplies, time, overhead such as using less electricity, and ways you might make what ever your business does more efficient and effective? Have you ever brought him ideas along these lines? In short, have you any ideas of how to make him look good, feel good, and see you as a valued employee? This kind of exercise is a way for you also to look in the mirror. You might ask if you are a happy person and are you a cheerleader at work?

Now once you are prepared in this way, you can help this man to see how you want to be managed and how it would be to his advantage to do so. What you are doing is reporting the weather to him. You are telling him how cloudy and down you feel when he storms about. And you are telling him what will bring a bit of sunshine to your work day and how that motivates you to do what he wants done.

Do you have enough courage to voice your feelings and thoughts? It will take courage to speak up to a bully. Be prepared for him to belittle what you say. But what is the worse that can happen? He can fire you. Can you live with that? At least as you say, you may help others who are bullied. What is the best that can happen? This owner may see himself as he really is seen by those he bosses. And he might be willing to try to change the way he talks to others.

Is it worth a try? You obviously are disgusted and angry enough to write us. So you do care some. If you care enough, you will prepare, you will speak up, and you will follow through rather than just complain to yourself and to others. Do let us know what you do and what happens.

Think WEGO. This is a word that symbolizes seeing things as they are and as they can be when we work together with hands, head, and heart.

William Gorden