3 Tips for Handling Your Incompetent Boss

3 Tips for Handling Your Incompetent Boss

We have all from time to time complained about our boss. How annoying they can be, how they don’t understand how the company works, or how they are trying to manage people whose jobs they don’t understand.

There is a big difference between being annoyed at your boss, and working under an incompetent boss. If your boss seems like they truly can’t get the job done, don’t understand how your organization is set up, and couldn’t manage their way out of a paper bag, you probably have an incompetent boss. Here are the 3 best tips we can give you for helping you deal with your incompetent boss and not letting their failings ruin your workplace.

#3: Are They Actually Incompetent, or Are You Not Seeing the Whole Picture?

It’s easy to slap the label of incompetent, dumb, or lazy onto someone and walk away from them, but really look at the situation and evaluate what they have going on. One sign of a great manager is not letting their subordinates be bogged down with upper-level stuff, so it is very possible what you are looking at is not an incompetent boss at all, but an employee being hit with an overwhelming amount of pressure or responsibility from up above. Your boss could be doing all they can right now, and just be spread too thin.

Learn about your boss, and what upper management expects from them. See if you can offer to lighten their load and if it makes a difference in their managing ability. Sometimes they really are just unable to do their job properly, but every now and again you will find a manager who is just overwhelmed and can’t handle quite so much being thrown at them.

#2: Read Up On Couples Therapy. Seriously!

Is your incompetent boss unclear, develops bouts of anger or fits of rage, or has a difficult time managing disagreements? Consider reading up on couples’ therapy, and how groups of people communicate better.

After all, it’s a relationship. Not a romantic one, mind you, but a relationship none the less. Learning how to talk to people and understand what they mean when they say certain things can benefit every aspect of your life, and learning how to repeat what they say with the phrase “is this how you meant this to be done?” or “When you say x do you mean y?” can really make a difference in resolving conflict in the workplace.

#1: Don’t Let Your Boss Change The Way You Work

The number one thing I hear from workers upset with their boss is “Well, he isn’t doing is job so why do I have to?”. This is a terrible mindset for long term success, and while it seems easy to slack off to spite your boss or in retaliation for what they are doing, it isn’t going to help you.

Keep your head down and work as hard as you can through the mess that is your boss. Come in on time, take only your allotted lunch break, and leave only when the day is over. If they are hypercritical or micromanage every step, make sure you are getting ahead of them by doing what you think they will ask of you next and triple-checking all work you submit.

Putting yourself behind on your workload will just make you look bad to the other people in the company, and create a toxic and negative culture around you. Keep focused and do your best despite the work circumstances, and you may find yourself on top of the game when that boss is out of there.