In our HELP! SITUATION SPOTLIGHT™ series, we shine the light on challenges that community members have shared with me. This episode is, “My boss hates me, what do I do? How can I save my job?”
Feeling like anyone hates you can be stressful! We immediately think, “I am awesome! How does anyone hate me?” Yet, with the diversity of the human population there are going to be some people in life who just do not find us appealing. But, what do we do when the person who is not fond of us (okay, they hate us) is our boss? Will they be able to provide fair evaluations of your work? Will we be treated fairly and judged only on our work performance or will we be unable to succeed due to the boss making decisions solely on their personal hatred for us?
It is illegal in many nations (including the US) for an employer to make work decisions based on personal attributes (and their feelings, stereotypes or prejudices related thereto). Thus, if your boss really does hate you (first make sure that it is not just your imagination), and it is based on one of the “protected classes” (race, color, gender, national origin, religion, age over 40, disability, pregnancy, etc.), you may have a legal case. Please consult an attorney immediately! Make sure that you are performing at a very high level at work (do not give the boss a reason to make an adverse workplace decision based on your actual performance).
If the hatred is not based on a protected class but is instead based on your “attitude” or some other non-related trait to a protected class, you might want to consider a strategic approach to change how the boss views you. What makes people “like” someone? When they feel they are like them (similar interests, ideas, sense of humor, etc.). It is possible to change how people people perceive us by reflecting back to them how they see themselves. Let’s discuss!
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