Bully at Work Moody Boss Karma Office Gossip No Picnic Back stabber Plug your Ears Moody Boss

Over the Boss’ head: S.O.S.

Please offer your advice to: Over the Boss’ head

All comments will be moderated. Please keep your advice short and to the point. We reserve the right to edit comments as needed, and not to post comments which are abusive. Your email address and name will not be disclosed.

Hi S.O.S. Office-Politics,

My boss asked our group to go to him first and allow all outward conversations to people in the company to go through him, especially where upper management is concerned. Lately I have been trying to allow our boss to represent me. However, after a meeting he had that I was not at, about a project I was working on, he came into our office space and began ranting on how the sister department in another state is taking credit for all our work. And she got the credit, because the direction from this upper management team was that we needed to impliment the way they were doing it immediatly. They are doing it that way because I specifically told them that was how we are doing it.

I was upset that they were getting credit for the work that we did, and that I shared openly with them. So, I called an executive who was at the meeting and told him all the people in our state that were involved in finding those results. He told me to email him a description of the work that everyone in the company did on the project. So I did without CCing my boss.

The weekend has passed and now I realize that I went to an executive to talk to him, when my boss previously asked me not to. Now I am afraid to tell my boss. I am also afraid to not tell my boss. I feel good that the right people are being recognized for their contributions on the project, but I did what my boss asked me not to. What is my next step with my boss?

Over the Boss’ head

franke james

Dear Over the Boss’ head,

My first reaction is that you may be in hot water with your Boss — but I can understand how you felt compelled to set the record straight. Office-Politics is a sticky art. My advice is to tell your Boss right away that you ‘goofed’ by going directly to the executive. You should explain the circumstances just as you have in this letter. Most Bosses (and I hope this is the case with yours) appreciate it when employees voluntarily admit their mistakes — and apologize. Nobody is sick. Nobody died. Keep it in perspective that you stepped out of line.

I hope this helps. Good luck.


Franke James, MFA
Editor & Founder, Office-Politics.com
Inventor, The Office-Politics Game

What's your advice?

(You can also tweet it to @dearOP)