Tips for Dealing With a Dramatic Manager in the Office

Joseph Stubblebine
Posted by in Human Resources

Many employees are confused as to how to handle the type of dramatic manager that thrives on trouble. Do not allow this type of manager to zap your joy at work and negatively affect your job performance. Use professional coping strategies to stay off center stage with dealing with a difficult manager at work.

Stay Calm

Understanding the psyche of dramatic managers can encourage you stay calm and cool at work. Many of them are frustrated individuals that crave attention at the cost of professionalism and peace. Often they are fueled by the idea of exerting control over others in the office. Sometimes they thrive on chaos, and may start squabbles with fellow employees at any time just to get a reaction or blow off steam. Speak softly and clearly when interacting with troublesome individuals in charge on a daily basis. If you remain calm and level-headed at work, the dramatic manager looks like the guilty, aggressive party in your presence if anything happens.

Navigate the Situation Carefully

If a confrontation occurs, try diffusing an argument with a dramatic manager to save face at work. If you find yourself backed into a corner with your manager, you must navigate the situation properly to avoid escalating matters. You cannot control another person’s actions, but you can dampen your reaction to smother the fire. Cast aside the tendency to become defensive. By limiting your emotional response, you rob a dramatic manager of the fuel needed to keep an argument ablaze. Never argue, which only encourages the inappropriate behavior to continue. If necessary, excuse yourself for a bathroom break to regain your composure instead of getting into a yelling match.

Remain Efficient at Work

Employees who fail to meet daily objectives may find themselves the victim of a dramatic manager on the prowl. Avoid slacking off while on the clock so you do not attract your manager's attention. Discover what work behaviors trigger your manager’s impulses so you can avoid more unpleasant interactions. Stay on top of your work, and do what is expected without being told.

Seek Help From Human Resources

If you have a history of workplace issues with a certain manager, it may be necessary to report him to the human resources division of your company. Do not be afraid to report a manager whose workplace behavior is getting out of hand. Chances are, other employees are suffering at the hands of the dramatic manager in your organization as well. Unprofessional, unethical behavior is unacceptable in the workplace, and it can be successfully addressed with the help of the human resources department. Filing a report against a manager with inappropriate workplace behavior may save your position later if you are faced with a job-threatening accusation.

It is important not to let the drama affect the quality of your work, or you will lose. Taking the high road and embracing a dramatic manger with kindness may allow you to avoid wrath in the future. Deal wisely with dramatic managers to limit tension, preserve your job and gain peace of mind at work.

Photo courtesy of jesadaphorn at


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