Q+A: What if my boss doesn’t like me?

Questions from our Readers
Answered by Michael Pollock

Q: I’m pretty sure my boss does not like me, though my work has always been complimented. Should I remain silent about this awkward issue, talk to him about it, talk to someone else? I really believe it’s personal, and it makes me feel uncomfortable, but what if I am wrong and do talk to him? Doesn’t that make me look like an idiot? Any suggestions would be greatly appreciated.

A: If your boss is making you uncomfortable by demonstrating his dislike in an inappropriate way then you should talk to someone in HR. I do not recommend that you ask him directly why he doesn’t like you: this will not be productive. But I do suggest that you go to him and say that you would like a performance review and please could you set a time to meet with him for this. This review is not going to overtly address his personal likes and dislikes, but it is likely to uncover issues that pertain, and it gives you the opportunity to ask how you could improve your performance. This exchange may elicit what you need to know. If this doesn’t clear the air, then the next step could be to ask for transfer to another group.