Incompetent Bosses! - Bridgegap Careers

Incompetent Bosses!


Have you ever been in a situation where your boss takes the shine for your hard work and yet make you feel incompetent; whilst at the same time, he runs off and presents your outcome to top management as his individual effort and take the glory?

Ever been with a boss that considers the team efforts as his own and will always use phrases like “I put a lot of effort”, “I wrote this document thinking”, “I believe this”, “I researched very hard”.

Some bosses assign tasks to everyone and does nothing other than surfing the internet, talking for long hours on the phone and micromanaging everybody. When they have nothing else to do, they request for all sorts of meetings where they are not able to add much value or give clear directions.

How do you know your boss is incompetent?

Your boss is out of touch:

You are discussing urgent issues and your boss is rather talking about something else that is of less importance and when you try to explain further he says “Yes, I know!” while it is obvious that he knows little or nothing about the subject under discussion

Rules and Policy Boss:

Your boss is perpetually coming up with rules and policies that seemingly slow down the department from gaining traction as well as limit creativity all in the name of been compliant.


They are so centered on you doing your work that you wonder if they have their own responsibilities, all in the name that they want you to avoid making mistakes. The truth is that they make you perform their duties as they have very limited idea of how to do it themselves. These bosses can’t come up with new ideas; at the same time, they will never acknowledge a good idea even if it is in their face.

How to deal with incompetent Bosses

You and your team mates should start taking work off his/her table in a polite manner e.g. I have some time on my hands and can I help you with this task? Why take on more task you will ask? Remember incompetent bosses mostly later become difficult bosses and half the stress from difficult bosses tends to come from our own reaction to the situation. So if you don’t handle it well now, it might become worse in the future.

If your boss is away and an issue requiring instant decision-making arises, you have two choices: either turn the problem over to another manager or make the decision yourself. If you’re confident you can take over, you’d be wise to make the decision. Remember, heroes are born in crisis situations.

Every time you sit with your boss, teach him/her something new without categorically making it obvious that you are teaching him/her.

It is to your advantage to discover your boss’s weakness and help him in those areas. You want to be part of a winning team, and your boss is this team’s captain. Guide him through until everything is completed. You’ll look good by making your team look good.

Watch what you say about your boss. It’s very easy to complain and vent frustrations about your less-than-qualified boss to your fellow coworkers. Without realizing it, you could be talking to the boss’s good friend or loyalist.

While an incompetent boss can be annoying and frustrating, Many times you can make up for their short comings and also “manage up” as they know innately that they lack many skills and knowledge. Don’t let your frustration get in the way of managing the situation more effectively.

If the pressure of working with your boss gets too much and unbearable, please review your CV quietly and start searching for another Job outside. Sometimes it is the only option available.

Have you had to deal with an incompetent boss?

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