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My boss has the following traits

  • likes to micromanage in the sense that he wants to check or give me permission to work on things
  • really hard time getting him to agree to let me have access to resources for work related tasks
  • likes to point out mistakes
  • avoids me and only communicates with me if absolutely nessesary
  • doesn't give me much work to do, feel like he's almost intentionally slowing me down
  • very short when communicating, sometimes rude.
  • forget about getting any praise for doing something well

Is this due to the fact that I screw up tasks and now he doesn't trust me or is he somehow threatened by me or something else? For example I wanted to use a somewhat expensive oscilloscope for my work he denied me many times before saying yes.

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  • 2
    Sounds like the typical superior to me - is this your first gig?
    – iLuvLogix
    Sep 30, 2021 at 9:48
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    "really hard time getting him to agree to let me have access to resources for work related tasks" What kind of resources are you talking about here? I think it's perfectly normal not to get access to everything you want, especially if those resources contain sensitive data.
    – Dnomyar96
    Sep 30, 2021 at 9:50
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    He micromanages but also avoids you?
    – morsor
    Sep 30, 2021 at 9:56
  • @morsor yes kind of like my dad tell me to fk off but also listen to his rules
    – user129745
    Sep 30, 2021 at 10:00

3 Answers 3

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Is this due to the fact that I screw up tasks

If you screw up tasks then that would definitely be a reasonable cause to keep a close eye on your tasks and have little trust in your ability to perform.

I doubt he's threatened by you in the normal sense. More likely threatened by the damage you may cause if left to screw up tasks that he is ultimately responsible for.

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We can't know why your boss does certain things. The only way to figure that one out is by asking your boss.

However, given what you said here - if you want to use an expensive oscilloscope and and you have screwed up things before, then I understand why he can be managing you a bit more closely.

What you should do is to bring this up during your next one-on-one meeting (you have those, right?) and then factually, without accusing him of 'micromanaging' or something similar, tell him how you experience the work-environment. Ask him how you can improve your work, how to improve communication between you two. Show a collaborative manner, don't try to put blame, just try to get to a better working environment. That's in y opinion the only way to get a better working relationship.

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likes to micromanage in the sense that he wants to check or give me permission to work on things

Don't worry about these. Checking work of a junior employee is normal. Expecting to assign work to your staff is very normal.

really hard time getting him to agree to let me have access to resources for work related tasks ... For example I wanted to use a somewhat expensive oscilloscope for my work he denied me many times before saying yes.

Consider whether you could make the case for spending money more clearly. E.g. If you had a different oscilloscope available for the above task, did you explain why you were struggling to use it? Or if the company has never needed an oscilloscope before, did you explain why you would complete your task faster or more accurately with one?

likes to point out mistakes

That sounds positive to me. You get a chance to learn and he's communicating his expectations of you. You're getting feedback, albeit maybe not as tactfully as you'd like, that will help you grow.

avoids me and only communicates with me if absolutely necessary doesn't give me much work to do, feel like he's almost intentionally slowing me down

If you think he is uncomfortable with face to face communication, you could try mailing him daily updates on progress together with questions about or suggestions for future work.

A more positive approach might be to take the initiative and setup a regular (weekly?) one-to-one session:

Hi Boss I'm finding your feedback on my work really valuable. I'm getting through tasks more quickly now and sometimes have bandwidth to take on more. To make sure that no feedback gets missed and to line up future work, can we setup a regular meeting to review my progress and next tasks?

very short when communicating, sometimes rude.

If you don't understand what he's saying, ask for clarification.
If you find his style of communication a little curt, try not to get upset over it.
If he is downright rude, tell him immediately each time he says something offensive.

forget about getting any praise for doing something well

It's a shame that he doesn't offer praise. Without meaning to be unsympathetic, for now you might be best just adjusting your expectations. You could demonstrate better behaviour by praising him where appropriate (e.g. "Thanks for getting that expensive oscilloscope, it helped me find and fix track down the remaining bugs much faster") and hoping that this will influence him towards better habits. This will be a long term effort though.

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