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  • Amina Aitsi-Selmi

Should you work for a bully? [Wise Wednesdays]

So we finally got some good news this year with the US election results. It’s a hopeful message that bullies can be displaced from their perch…

One of my very intuitive career transition clients wrote to me last week saying she found it strange that I would work for a someone who mistreated me. She’s right, I haven’t so far.

She was referring to the story of the professor who floored me during an informational interview that I shouldn’t be too disappointed if I didn’t get the job during an informational interview. I clarified that after getting the job I never had anything to do with him. As the top candidate, I chose to work in an entirely different organisation.

I was lucky to have a choice and not work with someone who could potentially have been a bully.

Of course, people sometimes find themselves trapped with a bully. They feel they can’t leave the job. It might be due to finances or lack of suitable opportunities.

However working for a bully usually has a cost that is ultimately higher than the financial gain. Your mind might give up as you spiral into anxiety and depression. Eventually your body might give up and you burn out completely. The recovery time is not to be underestimated. Think of a bad relationship you were in for too long…

Sadly, workplaces still allow bullies to get away with misbehaviour. So it’s best to take matters into your own hands. A bully can try and take away your power but you can reclaim it.

So if you feel your boss is not good for your health you have a few questions to consider:

  1. Will the situation improve soon?

  2. Do the benefits of the job outweigh the disadvantages?

  3. Do you have an exit strategy?

  4. When will you schedule some time in your diary to figure out an exit strategy or work on it with someone who can help?

Sometimes your resolve and the sense of empowerment you recover after taking things into your own hands will help to unlock the situation because you no longer allow yourself to be a victim. But that doesn’t mean you should stay.

Remember that 85% of what we worry about never happens and the remaining 15% we find we can deal with anyway. So take a step in a new direction if you need to. It’ll be OK.

Have a great week, Amina p.s. It’s official! How to Break Out of Overwhelm and Love Your Work Again workshop is happening on the 3rd of December at 7pm UK. Join me in this interactive coaching space to reduce stress, alleviate pandemic fatigue, reconnect with a sense of purpose and feel energised and inspired.

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