No-one wants to be taken advantage of. However, a lot of people also want to make a job and a working relationship work, so they’re willing to stick around for longer than they probably should be. If your boss continues to walk all over you, what can you do about it? Here are four steps to making sure you don’t get stuck in a job that you grow to hate in a business that makes no room for you.
Know your worth
If you feel like you’re not getting the validation, the respect, and the compensation you deserve, then it’s time to take a broader look at what you contribute to the company.
If your boss hasn’t offered you a raise in a long-time, can you put together the body of evidence to show the value you provide and negotiate yourself a raise?
Similarly, knowing your real worth to a business, especially if you’re one of the only people or the only person who knows how to handle certain situations or processes can make you feel much safer about your job.
Most bosses don’t want their skilled employees leaving, so knowing the upper hand you can have in the situation can be a great help.
When to say no
On the other hands, some employers believe that their team is willing to do anything just to keep their job. Saying “no” sounds like a risky prospect, but you can do it in a way that reframes the conversation.
For instance, if your boss is asking you to take on extra tasks on top of an already heavy workload, don’t tell them you don’t have the time. Instead, ask them if they can help you manage that workload. That way, they have to address the very real barriers that might stop you from taking on that work.
If they can’t help, then they won’t be able to justify giving you more work. If they can, then everyone wins. On the other hand, there are times you have to put the foot down.
Stand up for your rights
Some bad bosses can go a lot further than just asking too much of you. They can flat-out disregard your rights. For instance, unpaid overtime, paycheck deductions, discrimination, and harassment are not to be tolerated.
Document every infraction your employer makes against the law or company policy. It might be a good idea to keep things internal if you have an HR route to take around a manager.
If it’s an employer, however, and you have no other means to pushing your grievance, an employment attorney might be the best way to go. What you can’t do is let them hold your job over your head in intimidation against any whistleblowing or law-breaking.
If they do that, you actually have grounds to take things further by proving wrongful termination or retaliation, both of which are very illegal.
When coming to make any of the decisions above, make sure you take an objective look to make sure that you’re coming to the right conclusions.
You have to sometimes remove your personal experience and reactions from the equation to figure out if your employer is really taking advantage or if perhaps you’re misreading their intentions and actions.
When you’re sure they are, however, don’t stand for it.
This post has been contributed by Ryan Gatt, it may contain affiliate links.