Help! My Boss is an Insecure Jerk


If you haven’t worked for an insecure jerk, you will. Insecure jerks corrupt corporate culture and hamstring employees. They think first of personal agendas, divert focus, and instigate drama.


Don’t expect insecure jerks to change. Don’t attempt to change them. Accept and deal with them.


The worst thing you can do is threaten an insecure jerk; never do it. They’ll bite you like a caged animal. They are experts at backstabbing, undercutting, bullying, and belittling.

  1. Don’t get sucked into their fears.
  2. Focus on your work.
  3. Don’t publicly outperform them.
  4. Publicly and honestly honor their contributions.
  5. Understand and address their fears but don’t condescend.
  6. Be loyal to their position.
  7. Don’t go over their head unless ethical issues emerge.
  8. Find encouragement and support from people outside your organization. Keep this in strict confidence.


All bosses require information but insecure jerks need it. They need to know because fear and speculation dominates their mind.

  1. Clarify their information needs.
  2. Learn how to give them what they need. Do they prefer email, phone, or face to face?
  3. Define frequency of contact.
  4. Over communicate – a good practice in many situations.


If you outperform an insecure jerk they’ll make life harder for you. They’ll nitpick and pile on until frustration demoralizes you. The brighter you shine the darker they’ll make it. (Never threaten them)


Insecurities drive performance for some insecure bosses. They work hard to fill their insecurities. Tap into their need to deliver results while avoiding their fears.


Move up, move sideways, or move out but don’t plan on staying. Chances are you’ll stay too long. Contributors on my Facebook page consistently affirm this difficult point.


Everyone deals with insecurities. But, everyone doesn’t need to be a jerk.


What characteristics do insecure jerk-bosses display?

What suggestions can you offer people dealing with an insecure boss who is a jerk?


Related Post:15 Tips for Overcoming Insecurity.” Number 14 = Give others what you wish they’d give you.


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