Suzy Welch and Gayle King
Your dream job or even the old 9 to 5 can become a miserable experience if you have a bad boss. Gayle talks with columnist Suzy Welch about her article in the May 2007 issue of O, The Oprah Magazine that focuses on bad bosses.

Suzy says bad bosses are usually not good communicators, and if they have a problem with something you did or said, they will not tell you to your face. "Really bad bosses communicate bad news by freezing you out and you are left to guess, 'What did I do?'" Suzy says. While you may not always appreciate a boss who is candid about everything, Suzy says honesty is a sign of a good boss. "You've got to thank a boss who really gives it to you straight," she says.

Sometimes, Suzy says a bad boss can affect your life more than any other person you know. "A boss, in a way, becomes the central person in your life," she says. "When you are at work 12 hours a day, the boss takes on a gigantic [role] and they can control you in a way no one else can."

If your boss is making work unbearable but you cannot leave your job, Suzy suggests coming up with a password you and your closest allies can use to help you get through the day. Suzy says popular passwords you can use and repeat over and over include "you can't have it all at once" and "two more years."

In the end, if you can't get along with your boss, Suzy says you are going to have to find another job. Don't worry—Suzy says you are not alone. "More people quit over bad bosses than I think any other cause," she says. "You feel trapped by it."


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