Brain-Storming 6

Situation: Jane is in the job she had been dreaming of since high-school. She studied in a major that will help her get this job in college. Then, she worked at smaller jobs that will give her experience to get this job. After 5 years after college, she got the job she wanted and has been here for 3 years. She likes it a lot, but her boss is not a nice person. He keeps everyone on their toes all the time and tells them off (or uses satirical comments) if something goes wrong. Jane started questioning whether she wants to be in this job anymore because of her boss’s behavior.

Questions: Should Jane give up her job? If yes, what would she do given that she dedicated many years to getting this job? If no, how should she deal with her boss’s behavior?

30 thoughts on “Brain-Storming 6

  1. Jane should not quit her job but should deal with her boss. She should talk with her boss. Maybe my writing letter to him.
    But quitting is not a good option I think.
    Want to listen what others have to say on this
    What do you think?

    1. I would also prefer is she could communicate this to her boss. But first, this is difficult to do, given the different statuses. And if her boss is not an open person, this might lead to tension in the workplace. If these can be overcome, talking to the boss seems to be a better option. I don’t know how these can be dealt with, though.

  2. No she should not quit….at least not until she feels she can get another job in a better environment or create this on her own with her own clients. I feel strongly about people being happy in what they do and where they do it. Just saying……

  3. Tricky, because I am a people-pleaser. I’d probably turn the situation around so the issue was my fault in some way and work harder to fix something that wasn’t actually my problem. I think a lot of people might act similarly. I agree, talking to the boss might be problematic. It depends on their personality. I think I would start looking for a comparable job while still employed. At least she now has experience to draw on as to the kind of work environment that is important to her.

    1. I also think a lot of people behave that way, which is not ideal. But it is a strategy against having to deal with this kind of pressure. If she is going to loo for a job, I think she should also convince herself that she can give up on her dream, or rather, dreams can change. That is not very easy to do for some people.

  4. If Jane has financial stability she should leave and find the next gig – she seems to have the experience on her resume to find the next assignment. If she cannot afford to leave, she should form a support group to share and support others on the same journey as her.

  5. Phrase: keep you on your toes ( If someone or something keeps you on your toes, they stop you being lazy or relaxed and force you to be ready for anything that might happen.) – Collins COBUILD Idioms Dictionary
    First question: Does this job supposed to be a high-intensity environment where you supposed to react fairly quickly due to changing rules, regulations or just the nature of the work (military, ER doctor, Adventure Guide)?
    Second question: If something goes wrong isn’t your boss’ job to correct it? (Where I would question that why do you need to be corrected after 3 + 5 years of experience?)
    The only issue of behaviour you mentioned is sarcasm, which could be interpreted in many ways; some people just have a dry, sarcastic humour which is not necessarily toxic.

    Luke 6:38 “For with the measure you use, it will be measured to you.”
    Maybe Jane needs to look at herself and see if she fulfils her contract to the letter, or gives more she is required. Which way would she do it differently from her boss? Did she offer him any help or had a coffee with him and discuss how he is getting on?

    Finally, I do not believe that such a thing as a “dream job” exist. There are jobs which you can enjoy, but without any difficulties, you won’t grow. And you need to grow. Because you have flaws.
    We all have.

    1. Good points there! I used that phrase to mean that the boss requires more work than needed most times (can be interpreted as, for example, sometimes giving one person multiple people’s jobs). The job does not require quick reactions. And in this scenario, the boss corrects the employees too much (e.g. corrects things done correctly as well, with the intention that it can be better). This might lead to better products but overwhelming for employees.
      As for the questions, I think I agree that Jane needs to evaluate her performance first and then try to talk to her boss. How this conversation can be done is another question.

      1. Well, if you put it that way…
        Sounds like micromanagement. In that case, I can suggest that Jane practise some boundaries and start to say no. Nevertheless, the splinter in the eye scenario stands because a micromanaging boss can take a no personally and will pick on every tiny mistake Jane makes, so be squicky clean before you start to “questioning your boss”.
        Recordkeeping can be helpful. You could point out how much tasks you are actually complete a week, both your own and when you “help out”; also which of those tasks were correct but “could do better” (you might pick up a pattern, why it is corrected).
        Having a boss with a high standard is overwhelming, I agree. However, if the end result is really a better product, then it is a good training ground to work there to be not just good at your job but excellent.

      2. This is overall a suggestion to be systematic. Recordkeeping is a good idea.
        I think there should be some kind of communication between Jane and the boss so they will have a higher bar of standards than just ‘what is needed’ (so they can improve) but this bar will not be too high so they will not be overwhelmed. Communication will bring out the balance, hopefully.

  6. No! She should think of her dream job as bigger than her boss.
    Bosses come and go!
    She should be patient and start learning how to deal with tough bosses though.

    1. That would be ideal. But here are two things:
      1) what if it affects her psychology badly?
      2) if the boss is not good to anyone, would she save her colleagues too if she tried to solve the situation?

      1. Many people suffers from such behaviors of bosses. Very a fewer boss help and understand employees situations. If she could get a job of her choice then quitting would be a good option.

      2. You mean an alternative jobs that could potentially satisfy her the same? No two jobs are the same, so she would probably have to make some adjustments in her dreams. But that happens

      3. Nice to see you again, you are right dear and I will say that situation could be understood to her better because she is passing through it.
        I have the same post to write and happend today with one of my colleague and I would be excited if you could get here in your spare time but I have to write it.

  7. I’m reading this book called crucial confrontations. It has all the answers to this. So no she shouldnt quit but she should confront her boss. How? It’s in the book. Hard to sum it up in a few words

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