Few Things Are More Destructive Than An Insecure Boss

Few things are more destructive to a career than a boss who is insecure. Unfortunately, it is a near certainty that most people will encounter one or more such persons along the way.

"The actions of an insecure boss will eventually create an insecure organization, riddled with anxiety and indecision," says Ramon Greenwood, senior career counselor at Common Sense At Work.com. "People will spend more time looking over their shoulders than looking ahead. Good defenses become more important than effective offenses."

Seven Traits Of An Insecure Boss

You will know your boss is suffering from an insecurity complex when he or she is engaging in behavior highlighted by these seven such traits:

1. The boss insists on absolute control over everything in the department. He rules with an iron hand, refusing to delegate any real authority. He doesn't trust anyone. He has few allies. Those allies he does enlist are formed into a tight little clique strongly obligated to his authority and dependent on it. They live an uncertain life on a short leash.

2. The boss constantly interferes in the work of his staff. Second guesses are the order of the day.

3. He constantly defends his position. Every question or hint of criticism is treated as a challenge to his worth and authority. He doubts he has the respect of his associates. Those who exhibit a mind of their own are under constant attack.

4. The insecure boss is most often an absolute perfectionist. He will climb the wall when you make a mistake. But look out. When he fouls up, he will blame it on someone else. He has to be right every time.

5. He will resist making decisions. This means endless studies and return trips to the drawing boards.

6. He will frequently remind you who is boss.

7. He finds it next to impossible to laugh at himself, but he is quick to laugh at others.

SEVEN ACTIONS YOU CAN TAKE

There are no certain quick fixes, but there are seven steps that will help mitigate the situation and advance your own interests. Actually, insecure bosses can offer opportunities.

1. Be certain you are not contributing to your superior's low self-esteem. Do everything you can to reassure him of your respect for his position and your commitment to helping him do his job.

2. Shore him up at every opportunity. Learn where he feels most insecure--where his hot buttons are--and make a special effort to be helpful in these areas.

3. When you have to challenge him, and surely you will from time to time, be certain to do it in a positive way. Don't question his authority. Never challenge or criticize the boss in the presence of others.

4. Never go around your insecure boss to deal directly with his boss without explicit approval. Make sure he realizes that you clearly understand the hierarchical relationships. You don't want to become an endangered species because you are seen as questioning his judgement and appealing to higher authorities.

5. Always be sure he gets more than his fair share of credit for your good work. Stay one step behind him when the limelight shines.

6. Find some of his good points and acknowledge them, publicly as well as privately. Remember, your boss may be a pain in the neck to work with, but surely he must have some redeeming features worthy of compliments.

7. Think of your own insecurities and what helps you deal with them. Apply what you learn from this analysis to dealing with your insecure boss.

Ramon Greenwood is former senior vice president of American Express; a professional director for various businesses; a consultant; a published author of career related books and a syndicated column. Senior career counselor for http://www.CommonSenseAtWork.com

In The News:


pen paper and inkwell


cat break through


Make Them GLAD Youre Their Boss

Criticism has the power to do good when there is... Read More

Take The Guesswork Out Of Problem Solving

In today's chaotic world and uncertain economic times too many... Read More

Qualities of a Great Manager

In the call center environment we are often only as... Read More

Why Your Company Needs An E-Mail Policy

Everyone at the office thought that using the company e-mail... Read More

Innovation Management: The Power of Emotional Attachment

Creativity can be defined as problem identification and idea generation... Read More

Project Management - Preventing Project Slips

Can Project Managers prevent projects from slipping?Ask a techie to... Read More

Creativity and Innovation Management: Generating Better Ideas

Creativity can be defined as problem identification and idea generation... Read More

Get More Impact From Your Annual Conference

How can you get more attention for your conference and... Read More

Five Principles of Effective Communication

The problem with communication is the illusion that it has... Read More

When Business Becomes A Battlefield

"We have to be careful it's like a minefield out... Read More

Train Me -- But Follow Through

My mechanic has me trained. When I take my car... Read More

Outsourcing Quiz: Cheap Vs. Good

Someone can say, 'Why do you oppose this?' So I'd... Read More

Developing Your Management Style

One thing a lot of us don't do in sales... Read More

Power of Pinpointing Accountability

I have always said that if I were to write... Read More

The Importance of Business Goals

For you to get where you want to go, there... Read More

Turning a Negative Employee Into a Positive Asset

Several years ago, I took over the supervision of a... Read More

Computer Consulting Profit Secrets

Do you own or manage a computer consulting company? Are... Read More

Show Me the Money!

Are you ready to raise money for your startup?Leslie Mitts,... Read More

The Rise of Corporate Chair Massages

Employers have rapidly begun to understand the importance of stress... Read More

Hire The Person, Not The Resume

"? [get] the right people on the bus, the right... Read More

Morale Boosters: Feed the Troops First

When economic conditions turn tough or when the heavy work... Read More

How to Overcome Your Fear of Firing

OVERCOMING FEAR OF FIRING "It was obvious that this employee... Read More

Got A Meeting Planned? Ask This Question

Meetings ? they are a fact of our business lives.... Read More

Effective Meetings - Quick Survey

Here's an easy quiz to check the health of your... Read More

Million Dollar Support System For You and For Your Business

Whether you are a consultant, coach, business owner, doctor, professional,... Read More

Crisis Management Essentials - How to Communicate Effectively During a Crisis, Emergency or Disaster

A crisis, emergency or disaster can happen at anytime and... Read More

The Dripping Faucet in Every Organization

Each day millions of workers spend 8 hours or more... Read More

The Myth Of Relationship Selling Revealed At Last

The second you quit being the 'best deal' for your... Read More

Keeping Team Meetings Vibrant

Meetings can be the life-blood of an organisation or the... Read More

10 Ways New Managers Become Great Leaders

"It is a terrible thing to look over your shoulder... Read More

Innovation Management ? what are the practical impediments?

Creativity can be defined as problem identification and idea generation... Read More

Management Training: Are You Satisfied With The Results?

If you're not satfied with the results of your management... Read More

Protect Your Computer System with a Comprehensive Security Policy

The most difficult part of creating a Security Policy for... Read More