Boss Stories
Bad Bosses

Power Hungry

I answer to both a manager (female, in her mid 20s and engaged) and a vice president (male, in his early 50s and married). The manager graduated from college a year ago and was hired into the company a month or two later. She is determined to be in the spotlight and to move ahead at all costs. She has the VP wrapped around her finger. They are very chummy at all times, often touching each other during meetings or when talking, and go on long lunches together, or go into his office for hours with the door closed. She speaks German fluently and is teaching him, so now it is not unusual for our department to be in a staff meeting and the two of them will start to have a private conversation in German (none of the rest of us speak it). If there is business travel for our department, they insist on going together.

I am the only employee she supervises and I was "given" to her to supervise so she could hone her non-existent people skills. She is constantly criticizing my work even though I have years of experience and I am praised by other departments. She finds different ways to throw her power around. She will have me redo a report, change everything about it and then change it back to the way it was originally. When she found out directors from other departments were asking my opinions on various items, she forbid me to talk to them and said they would have to talk to her. The VP backs her up on everything. She is condescending to me, lies to me, steals my ideas and presents them as her own, and even lied to me about the position I was hired for. I was told I would be a marketing coordinator. Two weeks after I was hired, there was a memo sent around that all administrative assistants would be back-ups to the phone receptionist, and the memo listed the people involved. My name was on the list. When I told both her and the VP that there was an error, they said that although they told me I was hired as a marketing coordinator, that position did not actually exist, and that I was an administrative assistant. When I explained that I had bypassed that level six years ago and that I wouldn't have come on board if they had been up front with me, their response was if I didn't like it, I could leave. Needing the money, I have stayed but am actively looking.

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