Three More Brilliant Tips for Dealing with an Angry Boss

by May 11, 2023

A few years ago, we shared five simple tips on how to deal with an angry boss, and the response was overwhelming! We’re back with even more tips to help you navigate this challenging situation with civility in mind.

According to a survey conducted by the Workplace Bullying Institute, managers and bosses represent a staggering 65% of people who bully in the workplace. That number is far too high, and it’s time to equip yourself with the tools needed to deal with it.


Three Tips for Dealing with an Angry Boss

Dealing with an angry boss can be one of the most challenging aspects of the workplace. When tempers flare, it can be difficult to navigate the situation without escalating the issue or damaging the relationship between employee and boss. To help you keep your cool in these situations, we’ve compiled three more brilliant tips for dealing with an angry boss.


Keep Your Emotions in Check

While it’s important to empathize with an angry boss, it’s equally important to keep your own emotions in check. Responding with anger or frustration can escalate the situation and make it harder to resolve. Instead, remain calm and professional, and try to approach the situation from a rational perspective.

Remain cool, and collected, no matter how your boss is behaving. Take deep breaths, count to ten, or excuse yourself for a moment to gather your thoughts. It’s important to keep in mind that, while your boss’s behavior may feel personal, there could be underlying stressors or challenges that have nothing to do with you. 


Stay Solution-Focused

When dealing with an angry boss, it’s important to focus on finding a solution rather than dwelling on the problem. Avoid getting bogged down in the details of what went wrong or who’s to blame.

Instead, try to focus on finding a way forward. This means working collaboratively with your boss to identify ways to address the issue and prevent it from happening again in the future. By demonstrating a willingness to work towards a solution, you can show your boss that you’re committed to the success of the team and the organization. This approach can also help to build a stronger relationship with your boss, as it shows that you’re focused on the bigger picture and willing to put in the effort to improve the workplace for everyone.


Set Boundaries

If your boss’s angry outbursts are becoming a regular occurrence, it’s crucial to take steps to protect yourself and set healthy boundaries. It’s not your responsibility to tolerate any form of mistreatment, and you should prioritize your own well-being above all else.

Consider talking to someone in HR or a higher-up about the situation. They can provide guidance and support, and they may be able to help you address the issue in a constructive way. If that’s not possible, find ways to limit your interactions with your boss, such as delegating tasks to a colleague or communicating via email instead of in-person. Remember, your mental health and well-being are important, and you deserve to work in a safe and respectful environment. 


Bonus Tip

Don’t hesitate to seek support and training. As consultants and trainers dedicated to creating positive work environments for all, we understand the challenges that come with dealing with an angry boss. That’s why we offer specialized coaching and training programs to help employees and leaders navigate these difficult situations with confidence and professionalism.

Our team of experts has years of experience coaching abrasive leaders and turning around negative work cultures, and our CEO, Catherine Mattice’s course, provides valuable insights on Handling Workplace Bullying and it’s free for 24 hours!

We’re committed to supporting your company’s growth and success by providing the resources and support needed to create a positive and productive work environment for everyone. If you’d like to learn more about our coaching program designed specifically for abrasive, aggressive, or toxic leaders, snag our ebook, Abrasive Leaders & How to Stop Them: A Coaching Method that Works (which we offered in our previous article). 

Reach out to us and learn how we can help you deal with an angry boss and promote a healthier workplace culture. Navigate difficult situations with confidence and professionalism, and help create a more positive work environment for everyone.


Written by: Jennifer Areola

Do you know how much money chronically bad behavior costs your company? Spoiler alert – it’s a LOT higher than you want it to be. Download our data and worksheet to see how it’s costing your organization and what you can do to fix it.


About Catherine Mattice

Catherine Mattice, MA, SPHR, SHRM-SCP is President of consulting and training firm, Civility Partners, and has been successfully providing programs in workplace bullying and building positive workplaces since 2007. Her clients include Fortune 500’s, the military, several universities and hospitals, government agencies, small businesses and nonprofits. She has published in a variety of trade magazines and has appeared several times on NPR, FOX, NBC, and ABC as an expert, as well as in USA Today, Inc Magazine, Huffington Post, Entrepreneur Magazine, and more. Catherine is Past-President of the Association for Talent Development (ATD), San Diego Chapter and teaches at National University. In his book foreword, Ken Blanchard called her book, BACK OFF! Your Kick-Ass Guide to Ending Bullying at Work, “the most comprehensive and valuable handbook on the topic.” She recently released a second book entitled, SEEKING CIVILITY: How Leaders, Managers and HR Can Create a Workplace Free of Bullying.

3 Reasons Your Hiring Process is Too Lengthy and How to Fix it

Hiring the right person is essential, but a drawn-out hiring process can harm your organization more than you might realize. Missed opportunities, decreased productivity, and losing top candidates to competitors are just a few of the costly consequences. While being...

5 Skills Your Managers Need (But Probably Don’t Have) to Effectively Interview Job Applicants

Did you know that 76% of hiring managers admit that attracting the right job candidates is their greatest challenge? Why? Because many managers lack key skills needed for effective interviewing. Culture matters to employees, but it’s just as crucial for hiring. Keep...

Concerned about discussions of opposing political views at work?

Election season is here, bringing with it a flood of discussions, debates, and distractions. Add global tensions dominating the news, and it's easy to see why employees might struggle to stay focused… especially if they have opposing views from their colleagues… and...

3 Savvy Ways to Spend Your Budget Surplus

It’s halfway through the year, and for some companies, the fiscal year is wrapping up, leaving them with an unexpected budget surplus.  While it might be tempting to funnel these extra funds into new equipment or throw after-hours parties, there's a more strategic...

Implicit Bias Training That Works

A significant barrier to achieving a diverse and inclusive workforce is implicit bias. Implicit bias occurs when, for instance, you hear the word "engineer" and immediately assume it is a man, or hear "teacher" and assume it is a woman. Have you ever been guilty of...

Over 50% of Workers Now Value Balance and Belonging Over Climbing the Corporate Ladder

Yesterday, I came across research by Randstad and it really got me thinking about how much the workplace landscape is changing. This study included insights from 27,000 workers worldwide and what really caught my attention was that nearly half of the respondents—47%,...

Your Culture Matters as Much as Your Legal Compliance

Legal compliance serves as the bedrock of any organization. While it lays the foundation, a positive workplace culture breathes life into your organization. A strong, supportive culture fosters employee engagement, boosts morale, and enhances productivity.  This...

How We Create Respectful Work Cultures

For the past 15 years, we have been dedicated to transforming toxic workplace cultures and fostering positive environments through executive coaching, corporate training, and large-scale culture change projects. We’ve serviced over 250 clients and their thousands of...

42% of employees would QUIT over political disagreements

Is it appropriate to restrict employees from expressing their political views at work? On the one hand, you want people to feel free to express themselves. But then, you don't want those water cooler chats to turn into full-blown political showdowns. According to a...

Why Retaining Top Talent is More Difficult Than Ever

Finding and keeping great employees can be tough for companies all over. With changes in employee expectations, advancements in technology, and shifts in the job market, it's a real challenge. In 2019, a whopping 42 million U.S. workers alone said "so long" to their...