Blue Flower

I often get calls from Human Resources Managers who don't know how to deal with difficult bosses. However, one such conversation left a lasting mark in my mind. It's about calling a human resources director from a large company that was in a real crisis situation.

"We have a manager who constantly acts arrogantly and aggressively and always comes into conflict. It has become a real threat to the integrity of our company, "the HR specialist told me.

As you can imagine, the first question I asked him was, "Why didn't you fire him?"

"We can not. He is a true genius who saved our company from failure. We need him, "was the answer I received.

So I decided to speak personally to the man who the staff at this company called "the boss of hell." To completely change his attitude towards his work and his colleagues, I used five steps that can be implemented by any person in conflict with their boss:

Build a strong relationship

For several weeks, I spent a lot of time building a strong relationship with my new client. I asked him about his family - his parents and his children. I found out where he grew up and what school he went to. I learned about his favorite activities and hobbies. In other words, I got to know the person behind the terrible facade.

Find out his motivation

After getting to know each other so much that we feel comfortable in each other's company, one day I asked him what motivated him to do his job. His response was deep and eloquent. He explained to me that he planned to become a doctor, but failed to enter a medical academy and decided to study business management in order to start working for a big company. In this way, he is able to fulfill his goal of helping patients, albeit indirectly.

Fix the problem

After spending some time with my client at his workplace, I began to notice that although most of the time he was gentle and calm, he was sometimes subject to outbursts of anger against his subordinates, with his behavior at the edge of what can be described as harassment. When I asked him why he allowed his emotions to guide him, he shrugged and told me: "I don't know, I'm just getting impatient. He also did not understand why his employees disapproved of his behavior. "Can't they see that I think I'm good. It's a brief outburst of anger, "he says.

Learning new skills

In leadership, like any other field of work, there are things that one does not learn at university. Over the next few months, I and my client started working on learning new skills, which I called "good practices." For the first time in his life, he had the resources at his disposal to help him control his emotions and respond more slowly to whatever was going on at work.


After he acquired the skills needed to deal with his anger, I made him convene a meeting with his team to acknowledge the mistakes he had made in the past and to discuss with his colleagues the steps he had taken to improve their relations with them.

The end result of my work with this manager was very good. Within a year, my client became not only a great leader but also a good person.

However, things do not always go so smoothly. And if the problem is with someone who holds a higher position than you, then you are not in an enviable position. However, you can follow the steps outlined here to resolve your conflicts with your boss.

Loli Daskal, president, and CEO of consulting firm Lead From Within, blogged.

Read next: Human resources development and management