The Narcissistic Boss


Have you ever worked with a boss who behaved as though the entire universe revolved around him (her)? He regales people about how very clever he is, and crows loud and long every time he does something right. He is his own favourite topic, and never tires of it. This behavior could just be written off as an annoying character glitch, except that it causes him to be completely oblivious of the hard work and accomplishments of everyone else around him. At his worst, he can become a Credit Stealer (more details on him in Winning with the Boss from Hell – a guide to life in the trenches).

This is an individual who, for whatever reason, desperately craves approval. It’s part of who he is, and unfortunately there is not much you can do to change him. There are a few things you should keep in mind, however:

1. Make sure, as much as possible, that your name is on all the things you do. It’s the only way your boss’s boss (if he has one) will know how good a job you’re doing.

2. Whatever you do, when he’s in the process of patting himself on the back, don’t publicly minimize or question the importance of his accomplishments. Don’t roll your eyes or make fun of him – he won’t take kindly to even gentle ribbing.

3. Chances are he responds exceptionally well to positive feedback. So when you need him to do something, make sure to frame it in a way that makes him look good.

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