10 Red Signs Your Boss Has OCD – What To Do?

Written By Assma Riaz

The signs your boss has OCD will be quite visible if you pay a little attention. You must be thinking, “why I need to see this?”

The answer is simple! Being a responsible citizen and employee, you should keep a check on everyone if they’re doing fine.

10 Clear Signs Your Boss Has OCD

Maybe your boss is super clean and arranged; it will be wrong to confuse it with OCD. But what if he has OCD, it will affect the boss’s life, and the people in his surroundings will also get a negative impact.

Some common fears or obsessions OCD people have are the fear of dirt, need for order, or fear of hurting someone.

The boss will need constant encouragement and reassurance in case he has OCD; stay patient with it.

Here are some signs your boss has OCD and how you can help him.

1. He Needs Everything Perfectly Arranged:

If your boss has OCD, you can guess it from their behavior. When your boss sits on his chair, he wants everything perfectly arranged to get his day started.

The OCD Gets Triggered When Things Are Displaced
He Needs Everything Perfectly Arranged

If he doesn’t get what he needs, you can see his OCD getting triggered and making you suffer in trouble.

A person suffering from OCD can have unwanted thoughts or ideas that will be visible from their facial expressions.

2. Asks For Reassurance About Their Work:

When a person has OCD, he or she needs constant reaffirmation about themselves and their work. So in case you want to know that your boss has OCD or not, it will be sure from their questions.

Signs Your Boss Has OCD
Asks For Reassurance About Their Work

He might ask you several times if he’s doing fine while working on a project. Also, he’ll ask you if he’s looking fine before going into a meeting.

This constant need for assurance is a sign your boss has OCD.

3. Signs Your Boss Has OCD – Takes Time Off For No Reason:

The boss takes a half leave even if things on his side seem to be fine. Sometimes he’ll be all okay when he wakes up but request a full day’s leave because he doesn’t feel like coming to work.

Your boss might have to arrange the stuff at home, and his OCD is making him do it again and again.

That’s what takes time, and he takes an off for apparently no reason.

4. Seems To Be Distressed All The Time:

Your boss is repeatedly checking on his loved ones to see if they’re doing fine and are safe. He seems depressed and sad because of his self-made reasons.

An OCD Boss Will Always Stay Anxious
Seems To Be Distressed All The Time

The boss counts on things again and again, and sometimes he taps on the table. Also, if you see your boss repeating certain words or doing something really senseless, then he has OCD.

These signs make it quite sure because the boss will do such things to lessen the anxiety.

5. Signs Your Boss Has OCD – Arrives Late At Work:

Due to the repeated need of cleaning the stuff, your boss might get late from work. If he arrives late and has no meaningful reason, it can signify that he has OCD.

Such people spend lots of time cleaning and washing their stuff and clothes.

So can be the case with your boss; he needs to make sure that he has cleanliness around because of OCD.

6. Struggles To Focus On Their Work:

OCD people can’t focus on their work because their mind is running on several different tracks at a time.

Your boss might also be struggling to focus on his work, but he ends up failing and blaming himself.

Such People Find It Hard To Focus On Work
Struggles To Focus On Their Work

Apparently, he’s working on an assignment, but he still thinks if he locked the house door in the morning or not.

If he can’t drive to work without checking if he hit something, he has OCD.

7. Avoids Certain Objects And Scenarios:

Your boss is an OCD sufferer who will avoid certain objects and situations that trigger his OCD. For instance, if they’re having thoughts about germs, then they’ll be problematic while using a public restroom.

The boss may even avoid meetings and office events because of his irrational thoughts and fears.

So it’s a sign your boss has OCD when he refuses to borrow a pen because of fear of dirt.

8. Responds Aggressively In Certain Situations:

People having OCD can have aggressive thoughts that can get triggered due to specific reasons.

Signs Your Boss Has OCD
Responds Aggressively In Certain Situations

If you insist your boss join you for a coffee in a nearby café, he might get angry because of OCD thoughts.

A large number of OCD people experience rounds of anger for both strangers and their loved ones. It can result in potential violence sometimes.

9. Fearful Of Using Public Transport:

OCD interferes with the everyday life of people by giving them uncontrollable and unwanted thoughts.

If you’ve traveled with your boss on public transport, you must have noticed his strange behavior.

Having a fear of contamination or dirt, he can’t sit in public places, and it becomes an obvious sign.

10. Signs Your Boss Has OCD – He Can’t Share His Workspace:

OCD makes impacts on all areas of life for its patients, but work becomes even more challenging.

He Can Not Work With Other People
Signs Your Boss Has OCD – He Cant Share His Workspace

If your boss has OCD, he won’t be able to share his workspace with other people. That’s because he has fear and anxieties about being perfect.

The behavior of such people is very challenging, and not everyone can understand them. That’s what makes it even more difficult for other people to work with them.

How To Help Your Boss Who Has OCD – 4 Steps

If you’re feeling sad for your boss who’s suffering from OCD and want to help him out, you can do that!

Not too much effort is required in this task; see the following steps and put your part into the process.

1. Perform Your Job Perfectly:

The first step in helping your boss who’s suffering from OCD is to lessen the burden from his mind. You can do this by getting to work on time and doing your work to meet deadlines.

Signs Your Boss Has OCD
Perform Your Job Perfectly

Make your day productive and let him feel that everything is going fine.

Deal with your clients in a way that they are happy enough while leaving. Make your boss believe that you’re trustworthy and he can turn to you when he needs someone.

2. Ask Him How He’s Doing:

What do we do mostly in such scenarios? We complain about it to our friends and family. Instead, one should gather some courage to talk to his boss before thinking of quitting the job.

Prepare your points in a way that reflects your thinking as a way of helping and not criticizing. Ask your boss what’s bothering him and help him improve those areas.

While you talk to your boss, be positive and respectful and avoid targeting his working style.

3. Proactively Communicate With Them:

Instead of waiting for things to get worse, take a step ahead and ask your boss if everything is fine.

Talk To Your OCD Boss To Help Him
Proactively Communicate With Them

You should send tiny greetings with the work reports you email to the boss. You can also help your boss by telling him the next steps as a suggestion.

Double-check reports and inform him so he can relax knowing that things are under control.

4. Help The Boss In Delegating Tasks:

You can ask your boss for the necessary information to help your boss delegate more effectively.

It’s also possible to help the boss by volunteering and playing his role in the projects. So he can pay more attention to the delegation task.

If a job goes well, discuss it with your boss and ask him if he has any suggestions for improvement.

Frequently Asked Questions

What Does OCD Look Like In The Workplace?

In the workplace, if a person has OCD, he or she may need everything perfectly arranged on their desk. If he doesn't get the things before starting a task, it can be disturbing. These people are always overwhelmed because of the thoughts of getting a task done perfectly.

Should I Tell Employer I Have OCD?

It's not legally required to disclose your OCD before or after being hired for a job. However, if you tell your boss about your diagnosis, you can get your rights or accommodations. You might need these rights to maintain your employment.

What Is An Obsessive Micromanager?

An obsessive micromanager can take a bully approach in the name of control or influence over the members of a group. This obsession with minor details won't let a manager focus on the bigger and important details.

Can You Tell Someone Is OCD?

You can spot the signs of OCD and tell that the person is suffering from it. The person will have an excessive fear of germs and losing things they need. Such people will also have a fear of losing control or harming themselves or others. They also have violent thoughts and images.


If you spot any of these signs of OCD in your boss, you should talk to him in case he isn’t aware of this.

It will help him properly deal with his situation and come as a better person.

Yet, OCD doesn’t begin all at once; signs are small and sometimes seem like normal behaviors.

OCD signs include obsessions, compulsions, and it’s as worse as depression and anxiety.

You can share your experience in the comment section below.

Last Updated on 2 months by Shahzaib Arshad

Assma Riaz

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