President Trump just let the world know that he thinks he made a mistake when he appointed Jeff Sessions as Attorney General
Placing blame is the name of Trump’s game.
In a New York Times interview published this week, President Trump unleashed his fury regarding Attorney General Jeff Sessions’ recusal in the Russia probe. Trump said, “Sessions gets the job. Right after he gets the job he recuses himself. And if he was going to recuse himself, he should have told me before he took the job and I would’ve picked somebody else.”
Trump continued: “So he takes the job, gets into the job, recuses himself, which frankly I think is very unfair to the president. How do you take a job and then recuse yourself? It’s extremely unfair—and that’s a mild word—to the president.”
Sessions responded to Trump’s disappointment by indicating that he has no intention of stepping down from his powerful role. He also deflected reporters’ questions asking how he could continue to work for someone who seems to have little confidence in him. “We’re serving right now,” said Sessions, referring to his department’s work in dismantling transnational criminal organizations.
While most of us haven’t gotten called out by a boss quite as publicly as Sessions did, when it’s happened, many people likely aren’t sure how to handle it. So here are five things experts say you may want to do when faced with a disenchanted boss who expresses his displeasure publicly.
Be the bigger person
While your knee-jerk reaction may be to get upset, frustrated or angry, it is often in your best interest to maintain composure and receive the comments gracefully, Nicole Wood, CEO and co-founder of career coaching company Ama La Vida, tells Moneyish. Lashing back at your boss or engaging in confrontational dialogue may not only further frustrate them, it will make you look like you don’t accept feedback well.
Give them the benefit of the doubt
Though they are likely in the wrong for the way in which they communicated their disappointment, take a moment to appreciate that you are not fully aware of everything happening in their life, says Wood. They may have had a big challenge at home that day or they may be getting extreme pressure from above. It doesn’t make their actions right, but it will make it easier for you not to hold a grudge and to productively move forward.
Act on the feedback
If your boss was passionate enough about the issue to verbalize it publicly, it is likely important to act on it immediately, says Wood. Take a moment to internalize the content of the feedback. Think through how you can rectify the situation and take swift but thoughtful action. Be transparent with your boss about how you’re addressing it and the expected timeline for you to do so. Finally, reflect on how this could have been prevented and how you can adjust your actions in the future.
Provide upward feedback
When the situation has cooled down, make sure you calmly address the event with your boss. Focus the discussion on how his or her actions made you feel. Provide an alternative approach for how feedback can be delivered in a more productive manner in the future, like a one-on-one discussion, Wood says.
Consider leaving the job
If the public shaming was especially bad, you may need to look for another role. Los Angeles-based clinical psychologist Abbie Wolfson, tells Moneyish, “If your boss requires you to prove your loyalty by behaving unethically, your choices are to compromise your own values and suffer the negative social, emotional and reputation consequences, to risk being publicly chastised and/or fired—or to leave your job.”
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