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I am working for a boss that take all my ideas and makes it his own. I am constantly being overworked because I am currently working against a deliverable and also being tasked with managing the staff which was his job previously.

I am losing my mind. How do I deal with a boss like this? I am afraid to even speak my mind when things are going wrong because I am on H1B visa which was sponsored by the company.

Does anyone have a pointer on how to cope in situations like this?

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    Have you talked to your boss about this? What did he say?
    – nvoigt
    Commented Sep 28, 2016 at 7:56

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What you're going through is common enough. When you're an outsider it's not enough to be as good as everyone else, you need to be better than the rest. People get hired from outside and mistreated all the time. They shoulder more responsibility, they're talked down to and quietly people are jealous of their competence and don't like seeing them get ahead. Keep calm.

Find others from your home and talk to them about ways to cope. Find ways to handle the stress. In your situation I just buckled down, kept smiling and put up with it, proved my worth and covered my back. I didn't have a community I could fall back on for support. But I see many Filipino's here treated the same way and they find help within their countrymen/women.

You're paving the way and setting an example that will give more of your people the opportunity of work and they'll probably be better treated. So for example there was just a handful of Filipino's here a decade ago, now there is a few hundred and they're given responsible positions. Previously these same jobs would go to Indians, but a few messed that up for the rest.

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  • Thanks for this. This seems to be a good approach at least it helps my emotional health. How can I use this process and not degenerate to the "we vs them" mentality which is what happens when I fall back heavily into my community. I have worked with nice bosses in the past who is not even from my country. Commented Sep 28, 2016 at 17:07
  • A bit of that mentality is healthy because your people help each other more, but don't get caught up in the crybaby stuff. Focus on what is positive. You have to work on that, I worked on it every day, it didn't come naturally. But like anything else you can take what is positive and just file the rest away in your head as experience.
    – Kilisi
    Commented Sep 28, 2016 at 19:28
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    The important thing is to recognise what you're looking at, jealousy is jealousy, racism is racism, whinging is whinging. Don't try and change things that you can't change, find ways to work with it. Don't stop smiling.and don't take things too personally and lose sleep over them, it's only work. Look at your accomplishments, you had the guts to leave home and jump feet first into a new place, not many people can do that.
    – Kilisi
    Commented Sep 28, 2016 at 20:54
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Look into "managing up", and delegating effectively.

Even the lowest person in the hierarchy can delegate, there are many resources that will give examples and techniques. One is to simply state the trade-offs when assigned a new task. If your boss asks you to look into a co-workers tasks, ask him if he's okay with that pushing the schedule back for another task you're on. Often that will cause him to redirect it to someone else.

"Managing up" is an effective way to manage workflow when a boss dumps large, vague assignments on you. It is often best done by having your tasks and timelines visible, so you can point to concrete inefficiencies, or give clear feedback on how long things will take. Right now it sounds like you're a black box, where your boss can dump endless work and get endless productivity. By exposing how that box works a bit, you'll establish how resources are being misspent.

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  • Thanks for your comment. I have spoken to him about this and have used the mange up approach in the past and the reply I get is that's what we pay you for they are all the same priority and needs to be worked on concurrently. Commented Sep 28, 2016 at 16:11
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    There are a few techniques to get people to break a tie in priorities. You can try to pick the one you think is least important, and tell him that you'll shift focus to that because you have been focusing more on others. Or, you can say that low priority will be the first one done, with the others following. It can take a while, but usually people begin to see the consequences of their lack of management once they're unpacked a bit.
    – jimm101
    Commented Sep 28, 2016 at 16:15

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