Donald Trump of the Celebrity Apprentice may love his trademark phrase, “you’re fired," but it’s not something most of us want to hear, especially when defending our opinions or ideas. The following include some situations you may relate to—the best advice for every situation is to stay calm.
Disciplinary – Let’s say the boss says you’re late all the time, miss too much work and he writes you up offering you just “one more chance." In reality, however, you’ve only missed one day in six months and you’ve only been late once in the same period! Bosses are famous for wanting to be king of the mountain and love letting you know it. That doesn’t mean they are correct. For example, what if that one day you missed in six months was followed by a family funeral where you took advantage of your allowed leave? He’s most likely angry not only because of the missed day, but your benefit days off. Even if this isn’t fair, ask to meet with him and bring your timesheets along to show how you really have been following company policy on absenteeism and tardiness.
Inaccurate Pay – So you’re promised overtime, work overtime but when the paycheck comes along you’ve only been paid for regular hours worked—not the overtime. If you have an HR or personnel department, start there first. If not, it’s the employer’s legal obligation to pay you for overtime. Instead of barging in and demanding immediate payment, grab the employee handbook and highlight the section that discusses overtime pay. Present your case in a calm manner reminding the boss of company rules, but don’t threaten to sue.
Wrong Decisions – You’re working on a project for one of the company’s clients and the boss suddenly decides he doesn’t like your progress or decision making and threatens to give the task to someone else. If you are sure your way is the best way, ask for a meeting and bring along project information, progress and expected results based upon the client’s wishes. If you can show the boss you are doing what the client asked for, most likely you’ll win the argument. If a supervisor is the problem and you just can’t win the argument, speak to their supervisor and explain your problem.
No Life – If your boss demands all of your time—even when not at the office, it’s time to let them know. I once had a boss who called the house in the evenings on a consistent basis. The best way to end this if you have a partner is to let the partner answer the phone and tell them you’re unavailable. (My husband actually told the boss “she’s yours from 8:00 to 6:00 okay?") If you’re single, let the answering machine pick up the call and explain to your boss why you can’t be on constant call and you need downtime as much as he or she does.