New Boss Manic And Won’t Talk About His Mistakes!

Question to Ask the Workplace Doctors about difficult boss: When I try to get him to make decisions, small or large he avoids me and then gets angry if the situation turns out badly.

I started working for a new boss as an executive assistant almost 4 months ago. Previously I have worked for two very powerful bosses without any incident. My new job was found after I had to move across country to be with my ailing mother. It took me a year to find a position that was the right salary. My new boss in our initial interview told me he wanted to scale back his manic lifestyle and simplify. He said that he wanted someone to help him organize his time so he, at age 50, could have more family time and time to exercise.

He asked me what I wanted and I told him that I wanted autonomy and flexibility since I am 47 and would be available 7 days a week but as long as I could be creative with my work time and have time to handle my life routine. Well, as soon as I started he changed up drastically. He added more and more to his schedule and expects me to manage his chaotic schedule, which has been overwhelming.

When I try to get him to make decisions, small or large he avoids me and then gets angry if the situation turns out badly. I have heard him lie to people that I am dropping the ball when he doesn’t show up at meetings when he is the one who has forgotten or won’t confirm with me that he will be in attendance even after my persistent questioning. I’ve tried to talk to him about this but he avoids me by saying he is too busy to talk or if I email him he says he will address it at a later time. Will someone like this ever let go and allow me to truly help them or should I be updating my resume?

Signed, With New Boss

Dear With New Boss:

Update your resume. Your boss blames you for his own mistakes and gives you the brush off when you try to speak with him. Why fight fires for this fellow? You were assertive in your interview and thought you had an understanding of what to expect, but have been sorely disappointed. Hang on until you get another job offer. Meanwhile, you can simply do your best to make this boss sorry once you depart, or you can confront him, being sure his office door is shut so that he can not get out, to state what you think is necessary to make you want to stay. You might type these expectations in large font and place them before him and then asked him to sign off on them to give you more that the transitory quality of his oral word. This might seem like a radical step, but what have you got to lose? If he agrees with your needs or wants to discuss them and/or state what he wants from you, you may be on the path to working together as a two-person team. If he brushes you off again, you have a clear signal that continuing there is more of the same.Rarely is work a solo activity. Most often it is a matter of working with those next to you whose words and actions hinder or help. Where there is WEGO at work, you hear discussion, collaborative setting of goals and assignment in the midst of cheers, laughter, praise, thanks, and lightheartedness. Might that be the kind of workplace that is worth working for? Let us know if these thoughts help in your choice to stay of leave.

William Gorden