Dinesh Divekar
Business Mentor, Consultant And Trainer
Partner - Risk Management
Process Industry Consultant / Soft Skill
Retired Government Servant/advocate
Recruitment/talent Acquisition, Career Counselling
Hr Executive
Yashodhan Dere
Hr Business Partner
+3 Others

Dear seniors,

Gretings of d day.

Let me quickly brief you abot d situation which i am facing.
I started working in an organisation as an hr executive two years back. When i joined there was an admin officer whom i was reporting. But within two months of my joining the entire management team got changed even my reporting admin officer also left. Then entire hr responsibility came on me. But the previous management had no system n no proper docimentation for anything. It was really difficult to understand and deliver d tasks with very less or no information. Somehow was able to manage. But our new head of the management used to ask proof for everything which we did not had at all. N he started shouting n scolding. Whenever u go to him he tells something negative about our work n tries to find d faults only. N appreciation word is not ther in his dictionary. N he talks very loosely to all of us. He has started behaving as he is ultimate he is great n we all r fools. N this every day torture is putting my confidence n morale down. Because of all this m ending up doing more mistakes which i know is not acceptable. I m not getting how to tackle this situation without hurting anybodys ego.

Desperately waiting for the advices...

Thanks in advance.

3rd May 2016 From India, Bangalore
Dear Pooja,
Handling tough bosses is a part of life.
We all go thorough it at some time or other.
As Stephen Covey put it, evaluate your options
and try to be proactive.
The general approach is 'don't take it to heart'.
Ignore as you would treat a barking dog.
All of us should examine the FREEDOM TO CHOOSE
- to quote Stephen Covey again..
Many articles have appeared on the topic of tough bosses in Cite HR.
Please browse them and see how you can get benefitted by them.
3rd May 2016 From India
You had worked two years what was done to streamline work?
Now you will have to be tactful and proactive.
try and move things as far as possible in proactive manner.
But do not get disheartened by difficult boss.
Unfortunately as there are problematic subordinates,there are problematic bosses.
Dealing with such a boss gets you good deal of knowledge and tact.
Ignore barbs and criticism and try to be as professional as possible.
Keep documenting your work and keep him in the loop.
Do not worry too much about hurting some people's ego.
Avoid it as far as you can,but where necessary to tell the truth or bring out facts,do not worry about egos,but be sure of the accuracy of your work.
Many bosses have fragile egos and feel they are the ultimate.
But then you have to learn to tackle such people.
Take time and avoid mistakes.
Do not let him break your confidence and produce results.
Boss will change or at the end fit if things do not change,look out for alternative jobs.
3rd May 2016 From India, Pune
Dear Seniors,

Thank you very much for your moral support.

I want to quote one more thing here, i am working in Dubai and the head office is in India. We have seek approval for everything even if its increment or fitment or promotion or separation. From past two years we were able to set some proper procedures and standards in recruitment. Streamlined payroll procedures, introduced some employee benefit programmes and appraisal system. Also prepared policies and asked for circulation, but the response was so bad from him and said we have already policies prepared by some external consultant which is sent for approval and all. But till date nothing has come to us. Even if we want to send some simple circular, he will not accept easily. Also in between day to day activities i hardly get time to think of anything. After doing everything he is unsatisfied...

We are not at all clear what exactly he is expecting from us. Some of the formats and procedures which we are following now are told by him only, but sometimes he says what you are doing is all wrong. painful


3rd May 2016 From India, Bangalore

You joined the company 2 years ago.

Your management changes after 2 months.

Meaning you had 20 months to get things right.

Even after 1 1/2 years, you do not have a system of doing work, your documentation is not in place, you do not have proof of things you have done. And you are making mistakes all the time. On top of every thing, you are an expat and therefore a high cost resource (probably requiring perks like housing, etc). And you expect the manager to be happy and pat you on the back. It's unlikely to happen.

We don't know your position, qualification or experience prior to this. So we don't know whether you should have known what you are asked to do, but it appears your boss thinks these are things you are supposed to know.

You need to evaluate whether you are fit and capable of doing this job. If your knowledge and experience is inadequate to domthemwork, then you should be looking for another job which you can do and learn your way up, perhaps a job that has a senior who will guide and train you. The other option is to take time off and go for a training at will give you the required skill set.
4th May 2016 From India, Mumbai
Dear Pooja,

Other senior members have given their views. Since I also hold similar views, these do not merit reiteration. Now I would like to look at the other side.

Your first post is written in informal language. Should we construe your post as informal attitude itself? Now in contrast, if your boss is methodical or fastidious, then your personalities are contrasting to each other.

From your both the posts, if we read between the lines, we find lack of managerial grace in your boss. However, at this stage, you may recollect on what occasions your boss had scolded you. Make a list of such instances and find out whether any pattern emerges. Make two lists, one for you and one for others. When you document his behaviour, you should be able to understand his psychology.

Your problem is that you should have worked under experienced HR Manager. Hardly you joined and the Admin Managers, to whom you were reporting also left. Therefore, mantle of change fell on your shoulders. But then you were not prepared to shoulder this responsibility.

When a person works in a very organised company, when he/she leaves that job, he/she tries to replicate good practices of his/her past company. Your problem is your lack of exposure. This is also one of the factors that is putting you on the spot.

Lastly, you are little vague when you say "there were no systems and procedures" when you joined. But then what change did you bring in? Did you try to showcase it to your boss?

If the work atmosphere is too frustrating then you may look for a change. However, in your next job make sure that you have someone to guide you.


Dinesh Divekar

4th May 2016 From India, Bangalore
One thing is clear.
Boss is difficult.
But employee also has shown gaps in performance.
Employee must first focus on what she can control-performance,improved knowledge and putting things right in her sphere of activity.
Probably boss seeing state of things is probably venting his unhappiness.
If things improve he may also become more congenial.
Focus on what change you can bring in your work,
Boss lacks grace possibly but even difficult bosses can change for the better when positive results flow.
4th May 2016 From India, Pune
Pooja, u r member since 2007. u sd have been expert by now.
The only dictum," Boss is always right." If u do not agree to it yr future in careergraph is bleak.
Now for tackling the issue, when ever u r putting a note for any case, you should specific about the past records and mention clearly such records are not available. This is for your safety. Then ask your boss for a sitting and tell him that u require some guidance as to how to update record. take a specific file and seek his advice. He will bluff as he knows nothing. But do appreciate as how helpful he is. Assure him that u will be updating the past records gradually. tell him directly that u consider him as yr mentor and it becomes stressful for u if rebuked incessantly.
But always be polite and never blame anybody.
Things will change.
All the best.
4th May 2016 From India, Ahmedabad
" Boss is always right." This is misspelt dictum; dissent is the essence of management..
4th May 2016 From India, Kochi
Dissent is the essence of management is a truism but in practical life,those who dissent are sidelined.
Reason for dissent is never analysed by the bosses.
Some bosses teat dissent as an indicator that employee wants to leave the job and not as an indication about employee engagement to the job.
My way or the highway is a style practised by many managers.
4th May 2016 From India, Pune
Dear Saswata,

Thank you very much for your valuable input.

But i would like to tel you the documents are in place from the time i have joined. Yes i am an expat and comparatively my cost to the company is not high as i am on my spouse visa and we do not have any other perks apart from salary. I have all the proof what i have done from my first day till today and my immediate manager knows about it. I am alone handling Maintaining employee files, updating the details in soft copy, recruitment, on boarding, induction,issuing appointment letters, coordinating with PRO for new visas, visa renewals and labour card processes, payroll, issuing required letters to employees(Salary certificates, NOC's, Service certificates etc). I am not accepting my boss to pat me, but he is aware of the situation. He never tells us what exactly he wants us to do anything. But whenever we do and take it to him, he complaints saying this is not correct that is not correct. Sometimes, he keeps changing what he himself has told. He forgets also.

I am an MBA graduate with HR specialization with around 4 years experience in India. I have worked with different bosses before and never faced any issue like this..

We have very less freedom to do or introduce anything new. As per me i am doing my job perfectly more than what is expected. If only i had issues with my boss then i would have thought of looking for other job, but many other people are also facing the same problem. I believe learning is a never ending process and we have to keep updating the latest trends.

Warm regards,

5th May 2016 From India, Bangalore
Dear Dinesh sir,
I apologise if there is anything wrong in my post because i posted it when i was totally frustrated. I agree with your point as may be there will be difference of personalities.
I will sit and analyse where things are going wrong and what is his psychology.
To be specific on the systems and procedures, there was no format of any offer/appointment letter, experience letter, no proper employee database, no proper salary bill and all employee files were incomplete, no basic policies of leave, attendance.
I will try my best to perform to his expectations, if things remain the same then i have no choice. Yes i should be cautious before taking up my next job.
5th May 2016 From India, Bangalore
Dear Seniors,
I thank all for their support and feedback. I definitely will try to look into my performance once again and try to keep all the records of my achievements even if it is small. So i will be having proof to show my Boss.
5th May 2016 From India, Bangalore
Rules of Management: 1. The boss is always right. 2. If the boss is wrong, refer to Rule 1.
5th May 2016 From Australia, Melbourne

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Please read your post again.

You are MBA in HR, with 4 years of experience (now 6), in a Company that already had systems in place.

You have worked before so you are not new and untrained, as you implied in the first 2 posts.

I don't know why you didn't dosclose the facts in the first place. It would have saved members from putting useless remarks that now look out of context.

So even with these things in place you are failing to deliver. You are making mistakes and notmdoingnwhat is required of you.

I have clients in Dubai. The things you are doing are always handled by a single person (Ofocurse it depends on how large the Company is). So you are not doing anything extraordinary. But if you fail to do your job, then in each case the work suffers. You have ofcourse not told us what mistakes your boss finds in your work or given any example of his so called unfair criticism.

The last part of the post intrigued me. If it was you alone, you would have changed your job. But since many others don't like the boss, you do not wish to change your job. So what's the real intention ? You are expecting advice on how to get the boss replaced ?
5th May 2016 From India, Mumbai
Pooja did not reply to my queries. If one do not consider anything seriously and is in the habit of only raising a problem, Obviously Bosses do not like problem but love solutions. She should not have apathy to Cite discussions.
5th May 2016 From India, Ahmedabad
Dear Pooja,
As a friendly suggestion, please refrain from using sms/whatsApp language in such important posts. My comment may sound trivial to you now but will definitely help you in the long run and to establish yourself as a professional.
All the best!
Kind Regards,
Yashodhan Dere
5th May 2016 From India, Mumbai
Hello Ms. Pooja,
Handling difficult situations, is an art to learn & we should always try to achieve this art or skill right from our mistakes.
No one can be expected to have complete command of all the policies. We feel HR is a very tricky & sensitive field where you need to make a balance between the Management & the other Managers alonwith staff.
We too use to have some unwanted type of pressures from different corners. But with some thought provoking tacts, use to handle the situations.
Hope you might have got an idea, how to come out of such difficult situation(s).
'Optimus Consultants'
5th May 2016 From India
Dear Saswata,

I have no intention to replace anyone.

I said i am new to that organisation and i was new to dubai labour laws. Yes was not untrained to hr but i was untrained to uae labour laws and the strength of our organisation around 275.

I will quote some examples,

1) We are into education industry. We recruit teachers. The interviews will be conducted by academic team and based on their feedback we take the final approval from my boss. Once i had scheduled an interview for a teacher and as per principles instruction i was taking the candidate to principal cabin and in the middle of the way my boss met me, and asked who is she and what is happening and all. I explained him. In front of the candidate he started telling me why you did not inform me about schedule and asked me to send the candidate back and call tomorrow and started teling hr is not working properly. It was embarrassing and painful infront of the candidate.

2) Once i had called another candidate for assistant teacher position. For assistant teacher we recruit even graduates. At that time there was an vacancy for secretary also. And the candidate had the similar experience. I checked with the candidate whether she is interested in the vacant position. She was fine. So i took her cv to my sir and explained him. When i took her to him he started asking her when u applied for the job how many times in applied. She has told she has uploaded d resume in the website several times. He wanted to know the exact dates. We get cvs from our website, will contact those candidates only if there is any vacancy. Then he called me to his chamber and started asking she has sent the cv so many times then why dint you call her earlier. Again same statement hr is not working, hr is not correct in front of the candidate.

3) He specified us a format for salary bill in the beginning. After few months he is telling you should not put this column you should not put this column. Whatever you do is wrong. When i said its as per his guidelines then he started telling no no i dint say like this. I still have the corrected papers with me.

4) Even if we take a small letter or file for his signature he starts telling its not correct. For example we follow a employee information sheet format in each employee personal file which is approved by him. But every time i take any new employee file for his signature he tell different changes.

To be honest i am very much comfortable and enjoy my work irrespective of pressure. I have never said that i am doing anything extraordinary. But every time someone says you are wrong it hits the confidence and morale. I dont feel changing the job will be the solution. I want to correct myself if i am really wrong. As per me i am doing justice to my profile. I am not telling i am perfect. But definitely willing to learn adopt good things.

Thanks and regards,

5th May 2016 From India, Bangalore
Willingness to learn and adopt and adapt is the best way to progress.
Learn from errors and honestly introspect.
It is always easy to justify and say boss is difficult.
It may not always be true and problem may be is that one does not understand what the boss wants in work,in the same meaning/form of what he expects.
Eventually a good and willing employee will be successful in long run.
All the best.
5th May 2016 From India, Pune
Dear Nathrao sir,
I too believe in honesty and i believe learning is a continuous process till the end.
I will try my best to meet his expectations.
Hope things will be fine.
Thank you.
5th May 2016 From India, Bangalore
It would have been better if you had explained in the details at the start.
You have given examples that seem to be following a pattern, where the person in charge has varying requirements that change from time to time. In a addition he seem to have already decided that you don't do your work properly which may stem from his experience with you earlier. And the place does not seem to have set procedure. However, others in the organisation may see things differently.
One option is to ask him for advice on how to improve. You may get an idea of what he expects.
Second is to keep him informed of all actions you are doing so he is aware of it. Then he can instruct you to the contrary if he feels necessary.
Third, when you take any letter to him tell him it's based on the format he approved last time. Or even better take his advice before you make the letter whether you should use the format used for xyz case.
6th May 2016 From India, Mumbai
Apologies if my post did not give clear picture. And as you said he has preoccupied mindset against few people. We do not have any complete systems. Loopholes are there.
Next time onwards i will follw your tips. Lets see how things work.
Thank you for your valuable time and inputs.
7th May 2016 From India, Bangalore
Hello Pooja,
Like Saswata Banerjee mentioned, a clear pattern does seem to be emerging out the multiple posts from you.
Since your current boss seems to have joined this Company as a part of the takeover deal, it's also quite possible that he himself is trying to make his mark in this new setup. And when things don't work fast/well enough, he tries to find fault with others.
It also emerges that he 'seems' to have a semblance of 'NOT' taking responsibility of his actions......leading to a toxic environment @ work.
I can only see things moving in the direction of you moving out of this Company. Just put-in your best as long as you work here WITH your eyes wide-open.
All the Best.
7th May 2016 From India, Hyderabad
I was HRD boss. In each of the cases you have quoted, I find fault with you. So introspect and change your style of functioning. It appears that you just do not like what your Boss says. He is the Boss afterall. For every and each action of yours , he should be informed, which you are not doing. Why? What prevents you from informing the Boss what you are doing? Hence, I suggest your attitudinal change.
9th May 2016 From India, Ahmedabad
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