15 Potential Reasons Why My Boss Is Hard On Me?

Written By Aleena

“Why my boss is hard on me,” asked an employee. “I’ve been working hard and doing my best, but they’re never satisfied. What am I doing wrong?”

It’s normal to feel this way sometimes, especially if you’re new. Or you haven’t been performing as well as you’d like.

15 Potential Reasons Why My Boss Is Hard On Me?

However, there could be a few reasons why your boss seems extra hard on you:

1. They May Be Trying To Motivate You:

Your boss could be hard on you because they see potential in you. They want to help you reach your full potential.

They may give you more challenging tasks or assignments. Or they might expect you to work a bit harder than other employees.

This isn’t always easy to deal with. But try to see it as a positive sign. It means your boss values your work and wants you to succeed.

Potential in you - Why My Boss Is Hard On Me?

Motivation comes from many different things. For some people, it’s money. Others, it’s power or prestige.

However, the most important thing to remember is that everyone is different. What motivates you might not work for someone else. And vice versa.

Thus, talk to your boss if you don’t think their methods are working. Communication is vital in any workplace relationship.

2. They Could Be Having A Bad Day:

We all have bad days. And when we’re having a bad day, our mood can affect how we treat others.

If your boss usually is easygoing but seems extra hard on you today, it could be because they’re having a rough day. 

Try not to take it personally. Instead, see if there’s anything you can do to help them out.

For example, you could offer to do extra work or take on a new project.

This will show them that you’re a team player and are willing to go the extra mile.

3. They Might Be Under A Lot Of Pressure:

Your boss could be under a lot of pressure from their boss. This can make them take it out on you and other employees.

Or maybe the company is going through a tough time. There could be layoffs or budget cuts. This can make your boss extra stressed and anxious. 

It’s not an excuse for their behavior. But it’s important to remember that they might be going through a tough time.

If you’re feeling stressed out by your boss’s behavior, talk to someone else in the company.

They might be able to give you some insight into what’s going on and how to deal with it.

4. They Could Be Jealous Of You:

This might seem far-fetched. But your boss may be jealous of you.

Maybe they see you as a threat. Or they’re worried that you’ll get promoted before them.

Or maybe they’re just jealous of your success. Whatever the reason, it’s not an excuse for their behavior.

If you think your boss is jealous of you, try to build a positive relationship with them.

Compliment their work. Offer to help them with projects. Be a team player.

This will show them that you’re not a threat and willing to work together.

5. They Could Be Trying To Teach You A Lesson:

Your boss could be hard on you because they want to teach you a lesson.

Maybe they think you’re not taking your work seriously. Or perhaps you made a mistakeand they’re trying to show you the consequences.

Teach You A Lesson

Or maybe they want to teach you how to be a better employee. 

Whatever the reason, try to learn from their criticism. Please take it as constructive feedback and use it to improve your work.

And if you’re not sure why they’re hard on you, ask them. It is better to communicate the problems with your boss effectively.

6. You Might Be Making Mistakes:

If you’re making a lot of mistakes, your boss is going to be hard on you. They may point out your errors more often than other employees.

This can be frustrating. But try to see it as a positive sign. It means they expect more from you and want you to do better.

If you’re making mistakes, talk to your boss. They may be able to give you some advice on how to improve.

And if you’re not sure why you’re making mistakes, they can help you identify the loopholes.

7. You Might Not Be Meeting Their Expectations:

If you’re not meeting your boss’s expectations, they will have to be strict. Meeting deadlines and targets is essential in any job.

If you’re constantly missing deadlines or not meeting targets, your boss will be frustrated.

They may start to question your work ethic and commitment to the job.

Thus, you must sit down with your boss and set realistic expectations.

This way, both of you will be on the same page, and there won’t be any surprises.

8. That Might Be Just Their Personality:

If your boss is naturally a strict person, it could just be their personality. Some people are naturally more demanding and have higher standards.

This doesn’t make their behavior acceptable. But it does mean that you might have to work a little harder to please them.

The best thing you can do is try your best and be the best employee.

Some ways to ace that is by being punctual and always meeting deadlines. Also, go going above and beyond your job duties.

9. They Might Be Testing You:

Your boss could be hard on you because they’re testing you. They might want to see how well you handle stress or react to criticism.

Or maybe they’re just trying to see if you’re as good as you seem. Pressure can bring out the best in people.

And employers want their employees to handle pressure well.

If you can stay calm and handle the stress, you’ll prove that you’re a valuable asset to the company.

So if you think your boss is testing you, try to use it as motivation.

Whatever the reason, try to stay calm and keep your cool. Show them that you can handle anything they throw at you.

10. They May Be Having Personal Problems:

Personal problems can affect a person’s work. If your boss is going through a tough time, it could be why they’re taking it out on you.

Maybe they’re going through a divorce or having financial difficulties. 

Personal Problems

Whatever the problem is, it’s probably nothing you did. And it’s not your responsibility to fix their problems.

But if you’re concerned about their behavior, you can talk to them about it.

Let them know that you’re there if they need to talk. And offer your help if they need it.

11. They Want To Fire You Soon:

This is a possibility, but it’s not always the case. If your boss is hard on you, it could be because they’re trying to get rid of you. 

They may be looking for an excuse to fire you. Not because of your work ethics or performance, but due to a personal grudge.

Or maybe they’re just trying to make your working life so miserable that you quit.

If you think this is the case, start looking for another job. And start documenting your boss’s behavior.

This way, you’ll have evidence if you need it later on.

12. It’s All Power Trip:

Unfortunately, some bosses are just power-hungry. They get a thrill out of having control over their employees.

They may enjoy being the one who’s in charge and making all the decisions.

Being strict is just their way of exerting their power. And they may not even realize they’re doing it.

The best thing you can do is try to ignore their behavior. And focus on your work. Don’t let them get to you.

13. HR Asked Them To:

If your boss is being extra strict suddenly, it could be because HR asked them to.

There could be a policy change or a new company-wide initiative. 

Or maybe someone made a complaint about your boss’s lenient behavior.

Whatever the reason, HR probably has a good reason for asking them to change their behavior.

So if you’re not sure why your boss is hard on you, you can always ask HR.

14. They Want You To Leave Their Department:

If your boss is in charge of more than one department, they may be trying to get rid of you.

Leave Their Department

Maybe they don’t like you or think you’re not a good fit for their department.

Or maybe they’re just trying to save money by downsizing. Whatever the reason, it’s probably nothing personal.

If you think this is the case, you can try to transfer to another department. Or you can start looking for another job.

15. They Want You To Quit:

This is similar to the previous reason. But in this case, your boss may be trying to get rid of you because they think you’re not a good fit for the company.

Maybe they don’t like your work or think you’re not a good cultural fit. 

Or maybe they don’t think you have what it takes to be successful at the company.

If you think this is the case, you can try to transfer to another department. Or you can quit if nothing is working out.

When To Take A Stand For Yourself?

There are some cases where you should take a stand for yourself. If your boss is crossing the line, you may need to say something.

For example, if they’re being verbally abusive. Or if they’re making inappropriate comments, you should say something.

You can talk to HR, or you can confront your boss directly.

It’s up to you to decide what’s best for you. But don’t be afraid to speak up if you’re being mistreated.

Conclusion:

When your boss is hard on you, it can be challenging to determine why. There are a few possible explanations.

Maybe they’re going through a tough time or trying to get rid of you.

Or maybe they’re just power-hungry. Whatever the reason, there are some things you can do to deal with the situation.

You can try to ignore their behavior or talk to HR. You can also transfer to another department or start looking for another job.

If you’re being mistreated, you can also take a stand for yourself. Just remember to stay calm and focus on your work.

Last Updated on 3 weeks by Shahzaib Arshad

Aleena

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