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The Exploding Boss

Got a tough boss? One who flies off the handle with emotional outbursts or picks up small objects from his desk and throws them? Some people do not manage their anger well and so even the smallest frustration can wind up being an atom bomb of emotional outburst.

Occasional ranting and raving is natural for most people. Some people even believe that appropriate and constructive aggressive behavior can be positive. But what employees who work for a consistently angry manager need to realize is that no one should have to endure a bully.

If you work for an exploding boss and put up with his behavior out of fear of losing your job, follow these Guideposts to learn what you can do:

1. Recognize that this behavior isn't all about you; it's about out-of-control anger

Bosses who explode in fits of rage or frustration have deeper problems than what you or your team mates might have done wrong. The exploding boss who takes his anger out on everyone equally has no clue what his emotional reactions are doing to the team because he is too self-absorbed.

While recognizing that your boss's anger is not your fault doesn't make it go away or make it any easier to handle, it might help you if you decide to approach him with your concerns.

By expressing how his outbursts make you feel, you might help him see how inappropriate his behavior is. Consider calmly saying, ""I may be sensitive, but when you yell, it's difficult to focus."" Avoid pointing fingers or laying blame in his lap, as this may only invite an outburst.

2. Continue to fulfill your job requirements; document all of your conversations with your boss

Even though your boss curses, yells and throws a tantrum, don't stoop to his low level of behavior. As ugly as it may be, your goal is to remain professional and to do what the company is paying you to do – your job.

Don't let another person's poor behavior suck you into a retaliatory frame of mind. Instead, continue to work hard and do the best job you can all the while you document each encounter with your boss and his anger.

3. If the situation continues, bring it to the attention of HR or another member of management

No one wants to feel as if they have to quit their job because of their boss's poor behavior. Though that may be a decision you decide to make. However, before you do, consider bringing your complaint to the attention of the human resources department or another senior member of management.

If you know your boss is particularly chummy with another manager, consider talking to her about your situation. She may be able to offer guidance or intercede on your behalf. At the very least, she may confirm that this is a ""normal"" part of your boss's personality. It may not be the answer you are looking for, but armed with this information you can then decide how to proceed.

Understand that working for a difficult supervisor does not have to be the end of your career. You have choices and options on what to do.




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