I’ve been working for two years as a Content Director for a short films website.  I bust my a** and then some.  I do my job, create entirely new projects that drive users and revenue.  I’m trying to save up for a house and to get married.  So two days ago, I prepared super-well for my performance review. So my specific gradings are all superlative in all categories then my boss invents some BS about “You’re not a strong communicator and can’t build business relationships.”  If I’m not doing that well, who is?  “No promotion for you” and not even a decent 10% raise is all I get for my hard work.

-Lorilei C.

I’ve been subbing for my alcoholic boss over half this year.  He is Plant Manager at our ballcap manufacturing plant and warehouse in Colorado.  I support his trip to rehab but to overlook my contribution above and beyond my title and salary is beyond insulting. But I heard my review from the brothers who are the owners on the fly as they wolfed Subway sandwiches.  The bottom line? The younger brother grunts at me: “Only giving you a Cost-Of-Living raise this year.  You’re lucky to have a job in this economy. And don’t think I haven’t noticed you sucking up to the Investors when they stop by to see our new lines of hats. Watch yourself cause we’re watching you.” WTF?

-Cameron T.


Often in the work world, cruelty is a commodity. There’s a difference between a strong, assertive leader and a secret sadist. There is a tinge of exploitation as you’re encouraged to work super-hard for a merit bonus that never comes. As the victim, you are compelled to keep the secret to keep your job and pay.  To your Bully Boss, your orchestrated fear, failure, depression, hostility & loneliness is entertainment, especially for managers who are personally unhappy at home. I always joke: people who don’t get any are the worst people to work for.  That’s true talk.

The sad reality is some managers invent and augment crises to “solve” and negative dynamics they can “overcome.” They seek to be the Protector of the Purse Strings, Viking of the Economic Downturn, Saber Rattler at Wayward Staffers. Holding the carrot of merit just out of reach endlessly strings you along their impossible obstacle course of performance.  By surrounding themselves with purported stupes and nincompoops like you, these supervisors seem most valuable or interesting to their peers and superiors.  They shore up this perception by tearing you down or forcing you to fall apart. Or quit. If you’re a manager looking to be admired but willing to settle for negative attention, baby, you can get become the Red Queen or King by humiliating others.  But why do these bosses need to demean their employees so badly?

The essential & foremost function of the bureaucracy and the bureaucrat is to perpetuate itself. They wanna keep their jobs at any cost.  Fair or unfair doesn’t enter the equation.

And please don’t doubt our employers are being coached by their masters and mentors on how to be mean with means. Money and benefits are the only reasons any of you are there.  And they often wanna be stingy and hurtful on purpose.

I strongly suspect it’s some part of unspoken corporate hazing.  Perhaps they had to suffer through it and couldn’t understand why. Like so many victims of trauma, they strive to understand abuse by inhabiting it and perpetrating it.


Bide your time.  Look for job opportunities in other departments and companies.  The most eloquent and safe answer to your Bully Boss’s provocations will eventually be the severing of all ties.



  1. I love your blog!!!

    But pls note: Full erasing of Macs personal computer hard disk is probably not the best job. This specific problem is without a doubt important since the volume of Macintosh computers is growing swiftly and so the amount of software created for these is actually increasing with all the tempo never seen before. In fact which means that we are going through the brand new concern that needs all of us to offer Mac with the selection of sources to eliminate the actual undesired as well as unneeded software. Actually eliminating which totally requires you to implement software program which can actively rewrite the full hard disk without producing a lot harm to present info.

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