I Have a Difficult Boss. Should I Quit–Or Stay and Hope for Improvement?

A question to Ask the Workplace Doctors about whether or not to look for another position,
even though it appears a difficult boss is trying to do better. 

I am a dental hygienist. I have been working for a female dentist for 2 years. She had been treating me fairly for over a year, then I noticed her changing. Condescending, yelling at me. I talked with her about this change in her behavior, that I wouldn’t tolerate this. Her reaction was defensive, angry. Then when I told her “I want to work with you, what can I do to improve this situation?” She softened and said “Ok, we can get through this” Since then she has been treating me better. She is a domineering person, and has been sued by a previous hygienist for bullying, harassment. Also, has been in practice for 6 years and has lost 4 hygienists, 2 assistants, and too many to count for front desk. Do I continue to try to work things out with this dentist? Do I take another job? Where I live there are openings for full time hygiene positions. Thank you for your help.

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Boss Called My Wife a Bad Name Behind her Back, But No Action Taken. What Now?

Question to Ask the Workplace Doctors about a rude and obscene comment
made by a manager, behind an employee’s back. 


My wife took a problem to her manager, in front of other co-workers. They took care of the issue. After my wife walked out the door, her manager called her a “fucking bitch” in front of three other co-workers. She found out through other co-workers that it happened. It was brought to the attention of HR, but nothing has happened since then! There was to be a meeting, but it hasn’t happened yet, and it was reported three weeks ago.   What can we do about this?

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Can My Manager Go To My Second Job To Verify I Was Out Sick?

A question for Ask the Workplace Doctors:
Can my manager come to my second job to check on me, when I’ve called in sick? 


Hi, I currently work 2 part time jobs in two different stores in the same shopping center. I have had problems with one of the stores ever since I joined. They waited to pay my September’s wages all the way into December. Then, they messed up my December’s wages and I wasn’t paid until in January. My bank has been overdrawn and I couldn’t even buy any of my parents or friends any gifts, which ruined the whole holiday season for me. They also haven’t recorded the overtime I have worked for previous months, so the store manager had to check CCTV footage to see when I was in, to rewrite any overtime. This was also paid late to me. ( I will call this store, Store A). The second place I work is much more professional and I have not had the slightest problem or worry about anything and they treat the workers like royalty (I will call this store, Store B)

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Stalked By My Boss’s Jealous Wife

Question for Ask the Workplace Doctors about being stalked by a jealous wife: 

“My boss’s wife is jealous of me and  I think she is stalking me. What can I do?”

Dear Workplace Doctors,

I am a female electrical engineer working in a research development group. I have two little children and I support my husband who has a medical problem and cannot work full-time.  My boss and all of my co-workers are male. I have been at this new job for about 4.5 years. My boss is one of the toughest people I have ever worked for and I have had to complain to  his boss and HR about his aggressive anger toward me, in the past.  He fights with my other coworkers the same way but he doesn’t seem to be as aggressive toward them as he is to me. I have had miscarriages while I worked there and never even felt I could tell him I was pregnant, because I didn’t want him to know.

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Favoritism By The Boss

Question to Ask the Workplace Doctors about favoritism by the boss

“My boss favors the golden boy manager. How do we (other managers and our staff)
deal with this and keep motivated?”

Our problem is about the difference between a boss and a leader. I am a manager of a Finance team and report directly to the Finance VP — along with four other managers. The problem is that the VP shows favoritism to one of the other managers and it is obvious to all other managers as well as our staff.

This favoritism ranges from giving extra support in meetings to securing financial and people resources, The ‘golden boy’ is on a pedestal (they also have a friendly relationship and have lunch together, call each other on weekends, etc).

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Store Manager’s Badmouths Subordinates

A question to Ask the Workplace Doctors about a boss’s demeaning gossip: How do you cope with a boss who gossips?

How do you deal with a store manager who disrespects you in private so nobody hears her? My boss does this to a lot of employees. How do you deal with this?


Deal With It?


Dear Deal With It?:

You get specific. By that I mean you talk to your boss about what specifically you have heard about yourself that she supposedly said or you heard her say about others. You ask her if it is true that she said. If she denies it, you say, “I hope you didn’t say that or anything like that. A boss should not gossip about any of us. If she has a complaint, she should talk to that person face to face. That’s what I want you to do with me and not to talk about me to anyone else. Can I count on that?”

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Should A Manager Intentionally Embarrass You?

Question to Ask the Workplace Doctors about a boss who yells: Is that an acceptable way to boss?

I’ve been working at Wendy’s for around two years now and my manager, who is now the general manager, like to yell at the employees for doing something wrong–this includes new team members on their first day who don’t know anything. Even if I myself slip up she screams at me in front of customers though it was a tiny mistake. She even embarrasses customers when they come in with a wrong order and she sometimes raises her voice at them. Is that allowed? Is it right?

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Confidentiality During Performance Reviews

Question to Ask the Workplace Doctors about performance review: When I went to close the door, he said to leave it open, so it stayed half-opened, half closed. He then proceeded to open the door all the way.

I just completed my Performance Appraisal review with my boss this morning. In the past (with previous Managers as well as the current one), our performance meetings were held behind closed doors, for confidentiality purposes. Today was different – when I went to close the door, he said to leave it open, so it stayed half-opened, half closed. He then proceeded to open the door all the way.

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