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Stanley Bing

How to deal with your crazy boss

Fortune's Stanley Bing shares his take on the five types of crazy bosses, and some strategies for dealing with one, from "Crazy Bosses" (Harper Collins).

The bully
Stay out of striking distance.
Rationale: Not being around is a terrific way to avoid being killed by flying shrapnel when he goes off, as he inevitably will. Those who aren't killed immediately will often be hauled off to prison for torture and, sometimes, execution. Have you got a field operation out in the boonies somewhere? Another office across town where people are into production, instead of planning? Go there periodically. Establish the fact that you are at times out of the office on real business. Then get lost when you see he's in the killing vein. If you must remain in physical proximity to the bad dude (like in a grumpy budget session), establish psychological and emotional distance immediately upon noticing the darkness is upon him. In other words, shut up and speak when you're spoken to, softly. This is not the time for honesty or self justification. Survival is the name of this game.

Effectiveness: Just common sense, but effective.

Tell us about your crazy boss
Is your boss heading for a self-made disaster? Scared of his own shadow? Just plain weird? Share your insane workplace story.
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