Follow Up On the Indifferent Boss

office bullyHi Deb:

Thanks for your advice as to what I should do about my boss who doesn’t seem to care about anything. I did as you suggested, and invited his manager for coffee. I told him that I really enjoy working with the team and that I learned a lot on the last project we did together. Then I asked him if he had other projects that could use my assistance because I understood that bandwidth was quite tight. He thanked me for being proactive in meeting him, and that he appreciated my enthusiasm. He said he didn’t realize that I had the bandwidth and that he was glad to hear it. The short story is that I’ve been put in charge of the summer intern, and I’ve been asked to help write a team charter. Our company is trying to up its game with our intern program, and this year, all of the interns need to make a two-minute presentation to our CEO. I will be working with the intern to manage his work and to help him with his presentation. As for the team charter, I was a part of the initial brainstorming session on that, and I’m excited to be able to help put it into action.

I now have a biweekly meeting with the boss’s boss, where we discuss projects, progress, and potential uses of my time. He was very pleased to hear that one of the first things I did was to require anyone wanting to use the intern’s time to submit a written project request so that I could vet it to see if it was appropriate. “I don’t want our interns spending their summers doing low value, copy-and-paste tasks,” was his exact quote.

At our next meeting, I’m going to suggest that I start a special client group on LinkedIn and that I serve as the admin of that. Not only will that be good for our business unit, but it will be great for his personal branding. I never mentioned my boss—not once. You are right—he has his number, and he is not really relevant anymore.

Thanks so much.



Hi Liam:

Discussion Between Two 3d Characters Shows CommunicationThanks for writing, and I’m so glad that this has worked out. Of course, nothing is guaranteed, but you are well poised to make yourself valuable beyond the microcosm of your current boss. Your involvement with the internship program is fantastic. Employers of choice take their internship programs seriously and want to use it as a way to recruit top talent. It sounds like that’s the direction your company is taking. That means your involvement with the internship program is high-visibility. I know you will excel. As for the team charter, that is another high profile project. And I think your idea of the client group on LinkedIn is fantastic. Not only does that promote the business, but as you point out, it helps your boss’s boss’s professional brand. Appealing to that is very wise.

Please stay in touch and let me know how things work out. But I am so happy to hear this update!

All my best,


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