Work Life

How can I get my boss to stop looking over my shoulder?

Q. My boss is a complete micromanager – I feel as if I might as well not even be there, since she rewrites all my letters, and is constantly looking over my shoulder. Is there any way to get her to stop?

A. Don’t count on it. When subordinates feel harassed and diminished, they get defensive – either passively or aggressively. The boss becomes a fixation, a target. You can’t change her. But you can shrewdly manage yourself in a bad situation.

I thought I was a guest at the company party, not the butler!

Q. Our office invited clients and all of the workers to a party to celebrate the company’s anniversary – it sounded great until I found out we are supposed to work doing things like checking coats, etc. And of course, it’s all gratis – the dinner is our only pay. Is this fair?

A. Sounds like the party is more for clients than for employees, but then again – without clients there are no employees.

Maybe you can re-frame your fairness concern.

I flunked my mock interview! 5 tips to get it right for the real one

Q. We just went through a round of mock interviews at school, and nobody wanted to hire me! They said I came across as “difficult” – how can I fix this for real job interviews?

A. Good for you. Rather than feeling hurt or defensive, you want to improve yourself. Negative input is never easy, but often valuable. Whoever loves discipline loves knowledge, but he who hates correction is stupid. (Proverbs 12:1)

Chatty Cathy coworker

Q: One of my co-workers does nothing but chat all day. She comes to my office door and just won’t shut up. What do I do? – Beth

A: It seems really simple, but let me defer to my very old philosopher friend, Socrates. He invented the Socratic method of asking really good questions.

I am sick of cleaning up my co-worker’s dirty dishes – I am not the office maid

Q: One of my coworkers keeps leaving dirty dishes on the counter or in the sink of our lunchroom. We have a dishwasher, but he never seems to be able to get the dishes into it. I’m sick of picking up after him, but I can’t stand the sight of the dishes after a while. How do I handle this?

A: How about offering him the standard grocery checkout options: Paper or Plastic?

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