Getting Your Boss Fired


In a word, don’t.

The reality is that your boss simply has more leverage than you do. He or she has a direct line to the management level above you. Your chances of winning are slim.

And, if your boss is simply awful and a coward, trying to get him or her fired is a waste of energy.

It is better to put energy into yourself and your next job. And, the odds of landing a new job are tipping in your favor.

I just read an article that shows that quitting is on the rise.

The article noted that, “About 2.8 million people quit their jobs in September, according to a Labor Department.

That’s up nearly 10% from August and works out to 2% of U.S. workers who have jobs leaving them because they want to. The quit rate hasn’t been that high since April of 2008 — several months before the financial crisis.”

So, how can you work the job you are in, no matter how painful, to help you get your next job.

I have worked with executive search consultants for decades and have seven recommendations on how to get your next job. Plus, I double checked these tips, and got further insight from leading executive search consultant, Bob Damon Executive Chairman, North America at Korn Ferry, the top executive talent firm.

#1 Do the exact opposite of what you feel. Actually focus on your work to support your current boss to help create a success. As you are planning to go out the door engage deeper into your current position so you can show examples of successes to a prospective employer.

#2 Use your strengths – show wins. If you are great at completing projects – then make sure you create a few wins that can be cited and referenced. It can be as simple as showing that you were able to clearly communicate a project to a team. Or it can be as complex as devising, managing and completing a project. The point is that you create current tangible results to reference.

#3 Learn from your horrible boss. Sometimes you learn a lot more about leadership and what not to do from a bad boss, according to Damon.

#4 Network outside the company. Realize that people inside your company are often not the connection to your next job. To get out, you have to reach out. Talk to suppliers, friends and others. Go to an industry event. According to Damon, “If I were to point to a big mistake that people make is that they get so busy in their own job, they do not network.” In fact, Damon says that continuously building relationships is critical. Always having an external network is critical.

#5 Network with managers above your boss’s level. Make sure that you have good relationships with your boss’s boss and others. You really want to have them think favorably of you. Chances are, if your boss is a coward, he or she will denigrate you as you walk out the door. A good relationship with his or her superiors allows them to form their own opinions of you.

Damon takes it a step further and suggested that in today’s environment of informal work structures that you build relationships all around you: peers, subordinates, clients, customers. You never know where the connection to your next opportunity may lie.

#6 Exercise patience, work a process. While you want to get out of your current job fast, exercise patience. Work a plan of meeting people inside and outside the company. Find opportunities and throw your name in the hat. Don’t necessarily take the first offer. Look for the right match. Damon said, “You want to make sure you are not running away from something, but that you are running to something.”

#7 Don’t quit without a new job. The leverage you have for your next job is your current job. Even though it may feel great to quit your job tomorrow, the feeling may not last long.

So, in the end, don’t get your boss fired. Start on the path to get yourself hired.

[Photo Credit: John on Flickr via Creative Commons 2.0]

This post appeared on the LinkedIn Influencer page of Rob Wyse on November 21st, 2014 and can be viewed there by clicking here.
Rob Wyse (@robwyse) is Managing Director, New York, of Capital Content, where he advises thought leaders and writes about issues that drive economic opportunity, improve the environment, and lead to positive social change. His areas of focus include for-benefit enterprises, climate change, interfaith understanding, jobs and the economy, Internet access, and healthcare reform.