A while ago I posted about my boss who is, frankly, a bit of a nightmare. She's undermining of me, openly critical of me and unboundaried in her relationships with my staff team. This is all known and undisputed by senior management in the service that I work with, who have been trying to manage her behaviour and performance under our capability processes (I know this because she is unboundaried with my staff team...).
Over summer I was transferred to another office to report in to the Director responsible for the service I work within, officially because the team I was working with needed direct access to the senior management team but also to give me some breathing space from nightmare boss. Over summer if anything relationships between her and I have deteriorated. She doesn't recognise any of the issues I've raised and doesn't accept the impact her behaviour has had on me. I'm now due to return to my substantive post, and to my original line management.
As part of my reintegration back to role there was a 3 way meeting between me, my boss and the Director where my boss was antagonistic, still not accepting of my concerns and making very little commitment to restoring the relationship. After the meeting my Director said she could see my boss has issues with me, that she doesn't think things will improve because of the way my boss views me but that I need to go back into role, try to reconcile the relationship or provide evidence that it won't work.
I feel like I'm being asked to basically go back and be bullied a bit more. There doesn't seem to be any question that my concerns are valid or that my boss's behaviour is inappropriate but still I need to work with her. I'm so anxious about this, I think I felt such relief about being out of it for a while, I didn't really have a plan or strategy for going back and now I need one. I've recently seen my GP who has prescribed medication to help me cope with my anxiety levels but even with this I'm often in tears at the thought of working with this woman again. I'm not someone who would usually be upset at work and am known to work to a high standard, having been commended for the work done over summer with this other team.
I'm not in a position to change jobs easily at the moment, nor do I see why I should but I'm starting to feel like I'm running out of options. Any suggestions?
Go back to the Director and ask for advice on how to handle it. How does she think you should approach reconciliation? What needs to happen that would count as evidence it won't succeed? I don't mean you should precipitate anything, but it probably means keeping track of emails, and perhaps logging any incidents (time, date, summary of meeting and so on.)