Ask HR: Help! My line manager is making my life a living hell...
What you need to know:
- Besides the few who a team might consider to have been fashioned in hell, those who deliberately bring spite and discord to bear on their teams, most supervisors desire to be effective.
- An effective supervisor is fair but firm. Yet even good supervisors occasionally have a bad day, the odd miscalculation, or lose their temper.
- There are no perfect bosses. They are all human.
I have been working for a bank for the past three years as a loans officer. Our line manager makes life difficult at work for the team. I am ready to apply the effort necessary to perform my duties, but not to endure her. Is this part of work or should I move to another job?
It is unclear how your supervisor makes your life difficult. Is your sentiment shared by majority of her team? Does she disrespect or embarrass her team members? Does she employ derogatory language to address her team? Does she muddle up priorities and scatter the focus of the team? Does she withhold her team’s credit or hog it for herself? Does she blame her team for her failures? Are your expectations of what she ought to be unrealistic or is she simply intolerably inimical? Have you ever supervised a team? Have you worn that shoe?
Several factors impact one’s career. These might include the culture of a workplace, the nature of challenge presented by one’s role, the appreciation and reward received for one’s contribution and the opportunity to learn and grow, among others. Yet career experience, regardless of role, can significantly be influenced by the quality of relationship with one’s supervisor.
A supervisor who challenges you to grow in competence and confidence, nudges you to test the limits of your potential, encourages you to pursue excellence and dares you to address fallow areas within your potential and behaviour can contribute materially to your career success. Besides the few who a team might consider to have been fashioned in hell, those who deliberately bring spite and discord to bear on their teams, most supervisors desire to be effective. An effective supervisor is fair but firm. Yet even good supervisors occasionally have a bad day, the odd miscalculation, or lose their temper. There are no perfect bosses. They are all human.
Have you considered addressing your grievance directly with your supervisor or through her boss? If so, ensure that you as a team do not have unattended performance or behaviour concerns, otherwise you need to pull up your socks. When you consider your whole career experience for the past three years, is the option to change jobs more reasonable to you than changing your perspective? Good or bad, supervisors are for a season.
HR Practitioner [email protected]