When you love your role, but your boss is an @$$hole!
3 Secret Hacks to Getting a Great Boss
Does any of this sound familiar? You start your first day at your new job, the HR person running your induction is soooo excited you’ve joined the company, that you begin to wonder if they have you mixed up with someone else. You love that your desk is next to the window, your new teammates take you downstairs for one of the best coffees you’ve ever had, and you even get a moment to call your bestie to tell them about your awesome first day. Then you have your first one-on-one with your new boss... and for some reason, a little ball of tension and despair starts to form in the pit of your stomach.
That, my friend, is a clear case of misoafentiko — a common yet incurable condition in which an employee hates (mis-ō) their boss (a-fen-tik-ō)!
Sure, it’s not always the boss’s fault. It may just be the result of a personality clash, poor communication or a difference in worldview. Or… your boss might just be an @$$hole. Let’s face it, there are a lot of bad bosses out there, so we need to apply the age-old principle of buyer beware when looking at a new role! Remember, you are responsible for your own happiness in life, and your happiness at work starts with you taking responsibility for choosing a good boss!
We recently surveyed a bunch of Peeplmatch candidates, asking them what made them LEAVE their last job, and what made them ACCEPT their new job. The results were astounding.
As you can see, the results show the second most common reason for LEAVING a job was that people “didn’t like working for their direct manager.” Yet, when people considered ACCEPTING a new role, the last thing to influence them was “the reputation of the direct manager.” Say what now?!?
What that really means is that no-one bothers to find out about their direct manager before accepting a new job, and once you start it is too late. And more often than not, the relationship with that direct manager is what makes or breaks a role.
“But HOW do I find out about my prospective manager”, you ask? Well, next up is a few practical tips that will get you on your way.
3 Insider Tips that will help you “research” a prospective boss:
1.Spend a few minutes spying... er... browsing on LinkedIn. While this may seem obvious, too many people don’t do it properly or don’t do it at all. Here’s how to start:
→ First, change your settings to Private Browsing so that your future boss doesn’t know you were snooping.
→ Do a company search, and then scout around to see who manages the department you are joining. When you find them, read through their whole profile and look for these tell-tale signs: Is this person a lifer or a fast-mover? Do they make any mention of “team” or “we” when they describe their achievements? Do they mention anything that resonates with your values? There’s so many things to look for to figure out if you’re likely to get along with the new manager, but you get the idea.
→ Most importantly, look for any shared contacts. If you have a good connection don’t be shy — reach out to them and ask what they know of that department, what’s the manager’s general m.o. and ask them what type of team member would work best with them. Give them plenty of talking space for them to slip up and give you some genuine insights into any relevant character flaws!
2.Check out Glassdoor to see if you can get some insider information about the organisation you’re thinking of joining. It’s a bit hit and miss, and won’t hone in on your manager unless they’ve been involved in something major, but it’s worth checking. If nothing else, it will help give you an overall view of the organisation’s culture. But beware — there is a lot of negativity on there when it comes to employee feedback. Think about it, how many people who like working for a boss/company will bother to sign up with a service like Glassdoor and post positive commentary? Answer — probably 1 positive for every 100 disgruntled employees who love to get on there and vent. In that instance you would have to ask yourself, “why is there 100 disgruntled employees in the first place?”
3.Come prepared to ask the right questions in your interview. In most cases, you will get to meet your direct manager in the interview process, if not, you must politely insist on it. When you do meet, here’s some leading questions you can use to get some insight into how they view the world, the organisation and you:
→ What are the things you love about this business, that make you want to stay?
→ Is there an official development plan for high-potential employees? How does it work?
→ How would you sum up the culture of your team, and what have you seen in my profile that would make you think I’m a fit?
Have you ever heard of a marriage where the partners hated each other but loved spending lots of time together? Or where a teacher was abusive and disinterested, but the student thrived under their training? No? Me either.
You might love the work you do, but if you hate your direct manager then you will never be happy at work!
→ Make an effort to research your prospective boss. A small effort now, will make a big difference later.
→ Look for evidence that the boss respects his employees and works well with a team.
→ If at all possible, talk to someone who knows the boss and the way they work, and be sure it’s a fit for you.