Abuse of Authority in the Workplace

Written by debopriya bose
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Abuse of Authority in the Workplace
Abuse of authority at the workplace can undermine employee performance. (boss shouting image by Kit Wai Chan from Fotolia.com)

Abuse of authority is the unfair use of one's power to interfere with an employee's work and performance in the form of humiliation, intimidation or threat. It does not include professional duties, such as appraisals, counselling or usual managerial responsibilities.


A bullying boss reduces a worker's efficiency. Organizations with abusive authority miss new talent and lose the existing personnel. This will harm the growth and profit of a business.


Inappropriate criticism, insult or humiliation in front of other employees, use of verbal or physical forms of threat and excessive control over employees are some forms of abusive authority.

Limiting Abuse

Don't argue with your boss. Draw a limit to the abuse in a professional way. If your boss is speaking ill about you to a higher authority, talk to him or her directly.

Be Prepared

You may feel the effects of an abusive boss in your subsequent job searches if your boss gives a bad review when contacted by your prospective employer. During job interviews, do not recount your abuse at a previous job. Rather, deal with the topic in a diplomatic way.


Try to praise your boss' positive behaviour. Gather support or proof of your exploitation. Let your work speak for itself. Maintain professionalism at the workplace.

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