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Jun 12 2014

Bossy Bosses: How to Best Deal with Them

call center call center (Photo credit: vlima.com)

Vol. 261, June 12, 2014

In an effort to learn how to close sales and better understand my clients’ aggravation in working in the day-to-day life of having a job, I took a part-time job in a telemarketing company. There is little to no integrity there and the pay is terrible for the managers, though could be decent for the better telemarketers – few make it to this level. Most leave after failing for a couple of months at the work making pennies for their time and effort given that it is a minimum wage job unless you make your quotas.

 Here is a little story of how I handled an incident that I see as office bullying by a boss:

 The other day I went into work in the morning in a very good mood, having had a fabulous weekend having found someone to help me with the business of business building (vs. practice management). Given that I am not a morning person even though I can wake up easily enough and get to work on time – this isn’t my best time of day, truly coming into my best self sometime between 10 and noon. It is for this reason that my clients are told that appointments start at 10 am.

 After having several “new leads” either hang up on me or ask to be put on the “Do Not Call list”, I was asking one of the managers to find me some “happy” people. It was said in an uplifting and fun manner, though my other manager was more than a little put off by my comment, feeling that I was bringing down all the other telemarketers with that request.

 I was finding myself upset and pissed off at said manager as I sat myself down to dial and unable to do so with the requisite “smile” after being treated in such a manner. So, I did what I feel is necessary in any situation of this sort – I spoke to her about the manner in which she came across: hostile and demeaning. She was even more pissed off that I dared to say this to her at her desk instead of asking to speak to her in the office.

 Well, we went into the office a mere two steps away, and she didn’t even close the door. I explained to her that if she wanted me to be “happy” and to “smile while dialing” then she would need to give me the content of her message in a more supportive manner or the result would be a pissed off and frustrated employee, totally unable to do as she desires. In other words, I told her “what was in it for her” to act in a different manner to receive the results she says she desires. She told me that she was such a good manager because of the way she did things, to which I repeated what I had just said. With that second stating of my side of things, first she suggested that I work the night shift. To this I let her know that I would if I didn’t have a business that had responsibilities in the evening, though I will certainly work every night shift I can. Next, she told me she would be more in tune with how she was coming off at least in her interactions with me.

 The truth of the matter is that no one has the right to bully anyone in the work place. It is also true that if you allow yourself to be bullied because you are fearful of losing your job, by not requesting what you need & desire, you are not being responsible for your own wellbeing. If you don’t do it, who will? My boss could have told me to look else where for a job if she wanted to, however she didn’t even come close to doing that. The reason why, was because I told her “what was in it for her” to change her attitude knowing that the only way she makes any money at all for her 40 hours of work is for the telemarketers to make money doing what they do, she making a percentage off their work. I had only learned that the previous night by the night guys – so knowledge is power here.

 Think of it as a form of negotiation and all will be worth while for all the parties concerned. I am certain that if you take this position you may very well find that you not only took care of the issue at hand, you may have found your way to a better situation all together as one of my clients did by getting a lateral transfer when she was so sick of her boss’s over controlling and demeaning manner of treating the professionals under his management. Anything is possible if you are willing to state your truth with a “what’s in it for them” attitude. Give it a try, and let me know how it works for you.

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