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07 Oct 2011

My boss is like a church elder
Hi, I am trying to figure out how best to deal with my boss who is very rigid in his thinking. To cut a long story short, he is a classic example of the dunning-Kruger effect. I am a very talented electrician and a member of Mensa ( not tryin to boast, merely giving background), so it is fair to assume I know what I am doing, yet he always wants to act as if he knows a better way of performing a certain technical task for which he has no education or experience (he has a degree in commerce or something, and no technical background).

Many of my colleagues have tried making him see that we aren''t all semi-retarded drones but all highly regarded in our industry, to no avail. So rather than asking you to give me advice on changing HIS behaviour, I hope you can give me advice on handling him in the most beneficial way. I really don''t want to lose my temper with him, and engaging him in an argument/debate just makes him flustered, which makes him even MORE adamant that he is right, facts and contrary evidence be damned.
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Expert
CyberShrink
cybershrink

01 Jan 0001

Apparently his way of behaving isn't really about you, but about him, perhaps his sense of inferiority, and his attempts to appear like a very competent boss. Short of his enthusiastic voluntary participation in skilled psychological treatment he isn't, indeed, likely to change. But, as you recognize, changing your responses to him may help you both.
You can thank him politely and pleasantly for his advice, and continue to do things the right way rather than his way. As you say, confronting and challenging him will only make him more stubborn and determined to prove himself RIGHT in everything. But behaving as I suggest may indeed modify his behaviour towards becoming less intrusive and absurd. Also, learn, as many spouses do, to listen just enough to say "Ah!' and "Aha!" in the right sort of places, without taking his comments to heart, letting yourself become immune to being irritated by it.
As Purple suggests, asking his advice even before he gives it, can keep him hapilly occupied without necessarily intervening in what you do.
Some people have an unconquerable urge to pontificate, even though they are not a pontiff.
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