Is it possible to avoid abusive workplaces?
Last week began a conversation with Isabella Mori of Change Therapy about bad work experiences. Isabella replied with her own examples and shared the first steps to get out of an abusive workplace. But was it possible to avoid that situation from the beginning?
Who is usually the biggest source of pain?
Isabella's clients have often come to her for help on dealing with:
- A boss who's always yelling at you
- A boss who gives you their personal tasks
See something in common?
Could it have been possible to anticipate a mean boss earlier?
Typical interview process
The typical interview process runs something like this:
- You get interviewed by a human resources (HR) representative. If that goes well,
- You get interviewed by your boss-to-be.
- You get offered a contract or you don't.
This is how you want the interview to go
You need to learn everything you can about what life will be like in the workplace.
Instead of only ‘getting interviewed', interview your interviewers and in particular your future boss.
This should become your typical interview process:
- You interview a human resources representative. You ask the HR rep. about life at the company, internal culture and how people get along.
- You interview your boss-to-be. You ask about objectives, expectations, their management style and their communication practices. You try to confirm what HR already told you.
- You accept the contract or you don't.
Bonus tip: Meet your colleagues
In certain jobs, you'll spend more time interacting with colleagues or team members than with your manager. If your co-workers can make your life a nightmare, you'll want to know as soon as possible.
In that case, you should add the following step to your interview process:
- You interview (at least one of) your future colleagues i.e. the people that you'll be working most closely with. Ask about life in the company, working in the team, life with the boss, and try to confirm what the HR rep. and the boss have said so far.
Not every company will immediately be open to letting you meet your colleagues but insist on it where relevant.
A terrible workplace doesn't deserve you and Isabella's right when she says that your first step is to resign. Life is too short to put up with garbage and you CAN do better. It all depends on how you approach new companies.