At one time or another each of us have fallen victim to the boss from hell. But is your boss just being a jerk or a discriminator? Here are a few ways to help you figure it out:
- You are being passed up for promotions. You are being discriminated if your boss is basing the decision on your gender, age, etc. Under Title VII of the Civil Rights Act of 1964:
It shall be an unlawful employment practice for an employer –
(1) to fail or refuse to hire or to discharge any individual, or otherwise to discriminate against any individual with respect to his compensation, terms, conditions, or privileges of employment, because of such individual’s race, color, religion, sex, or national origin; or
(2) to limit, segregate, or classify his employees or applicants for employment in any way which would deprive or tend to deprive any individual of employment opportunities or otherwise adversely affect his status as an employee, because of such individual’s race, color, religion, sex, or national origin.
On the other hand, if you are being passed up no matter how hard you work, but not based on your age, gender, etc. then your boss does not appreciate you and is possibly acting unfairly. This type of boss may not like or appreciate you. It will be up to you to gently, but firmly let your boss know how valuable you are and why you deserve that promotion. If things don’t change, you might better off working for an organization that appreciates you and will allow you to grow.
- Your boss makes rude or nasty comments to you. Depending on the comment, you boss could just be rude. For example, if you are late and your boss points it out in front of others, then that is just rude. It’s your responsibility to be at work on time and if you have a boss who wants to use you as an example, then that’s just a case of a boss who is a jerk.
On the other hand if your boss makes comments about your appearance, like the size of any part of your anatomy, then it can be considered sexual harassment. If the comments are repeated, then it should be documented and definitely reported to Human Resources.
- Your position is being threatened unless you have sex with your boss. If your boss is imposing on your personal life and has hinted or told you that your job will be dependent on sexual favors, you are being sexually discriminated. In this scenario, your boss is not only a jerk, but a discriminator. Sexual harassment is a blatant violation of the law and should be reported immediately to your human resources department, Fair Housing and Employment and/or a labor attorney.
Dealing with a difficult boss can be challenging, but no one should have to work under a discriminator. It can have a negative impact on your work performance and your mental and physical health. Understanding the difference between a rude boss and a discriminator can help you decide your next career move and legal options.