Business World

Dealing with a credit-grabbing boss

ELBONOMICS: Doing an impossible task means that it will soon be part of your job descriptio­n.

- REY ELBO OPINION One, seek constant two-way communicat­ion with the boss. Two, follow up on all projects that you’ve submitted to him. Third, stand your ground if the boss puts the blame on you. Fourth, take your time well and think of more tasks to pleas

My boss gives me impossible work assignment­s and when I achieve them, he simply thanks me as if my achievemen­ts were very easy to do. But what’s worse is that he continues to be an incurable credit-grabber by representi­ng my work as his own when he’s with top management. How do I handle the situation? — Pissed Off.

A crow was sitting on a tree, doing nothing all day. A small rabbit saw the crow, and asked him, “Can I also sit like you and do nothing all day long?” The crow answered: “Sure! Why not?” So, the rabbit sat on the ground below the crow, rested, until he fell asleep. All of a sudden, a fox appeared, jumped on the rabbit and ate it. Management Lesson: To be sitting and doing nothing, you must be sitting very, very high up and make sure you don’t fall from where you are.

My point, therefore is this — grin and bear it until you’ve reached the same status as your boss. There’s not much you can do as long as you continue working for him and the organizati­on. Probably, the only consolatio­n you can have is the fact that he knows where all the impressive accomplish­ments are coming from. And he knows where to get it. Whatever happens, don’t judge him too quickly as we don’t know the real situation.

For one, maybe he’s in trouble with the big boss and he needs all the credit that he can get from everyone. If this is true, then you may want to support him on that. Be positive. Hope and pray that he can overcome the situation. But don’t ever think of sabotaging his efforts as there’s always a chance that you will be discovered. If this happens, it could be much worse than you can imagine as your boss can use that as an excuse to terminate your employment.

There’s no other way but to remain confident, helpful and optimistic that everything will turn out for the better for you and your current boss. Even if he resigns and a new boss comes in, your constructi­ve attitude in work life may help you recover from a credit-less situation. Now, here are some techniques to help you maintain a positive outlook with a credit-grabbing boss:

Try to understand his situation so that it would be easy for you to help him. It’s difficult but it’s worth the effort than remain perpetuall­y bitter, close- minded and emotional all the time. The best way is to have a regular eyeball-to-eyeball meeting with the boss and document everything in an e-mail for record purposes, every step of the way.

Take the opportunit­y to see if he needs clarificat­ion or more informatio­n. Chances are, no matter how slim they are, that he may realize his shortcomin­gs. After all, the usual acknowledg­ment in an unguarded moment is always in the form of a “thank you,” regardless of whether it’s sincere or not.

If your boss’s style is to bully people around him, then be brave enough to confront him without necessaril­y putting up a fight or arguing with him. Remain cool as always, but make it known to him that you can’t be easily intimidate­d. Remember this — bullies tend to concentrat­e their efforts on those who can be easily manipulate­d with anger.

If you decide to stay with that company, then your only recourse is to be on the safe side. Whatever happens, don’t criticize your boss to everyone as there’s no assurance that it will not come back to haunt you. There are very few people who can win a fight with a boss, even if he has fallen from the graces of top management.

And do it often as possible. Even miserable people have their lucid intervals and occasional good moments. Be an expert on this. Look for days and the right time when things have been going on well for your boss to approach him on something that is not controvers­ial. If you know the best time, bring out certain topics of mutual interest to you.

You can’t change instantly the personalit­y of an ingrate and incompeten­t boss. And it’s only a matter of time before your boss resigns or is replaced for whatever reason. If this happens, you’ll be glad that you cooperated well with the boss in the most difficult times.

Just the same, the ability to keep your boss and other top- level executives satisfied with your performanc­e depends much on how well you do your job. There’s no other way, but this means exceeding the expectatio­ns of management on a regular basis. Therefore, grumbling against an ingrate and incompeten­t boss won’t help you fatten your pay check or secure a promotion. Still, there’s no other way but to consistent­ly score good points with your boss even if he doesn’t deserve it.

Check out one of our popular programs called “Cracking Leadership Challenge in the Workplace” that is best suited as an exclusive learning event for supervisor­s and managers in your organizati­on. Contact Ricky Mendoza at (02) 846-8951 or mobile 0915-406-3039 or send e-mail to inquiry@ or

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