I’ve worked for some pretty bad bosses during my career. Some were managers who became my boss after I was already working in the job, but others were toxic bosses I should have spotted before I even accepted the job offer. Here are five ways to spot a bad boss – before you take the...

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I’ve worked for some pretty bad bosses during my career. Some were managers who became my boss after I was already working in the job, but others were toxic bosses I should have seen coming before I even accepted the job offer.

Here are five ways to spot a bad boss – before you take the job:

He or she is late for the job interview. I once sat outside a hiring manager’s office waiting for my job interview. I waited. And waited. Forty-five minutes after the interview should have started, the hiring manager showed up. He rolled his eyes. “Oh, great. Another interview. Like I don’t already have enough to do,” he grumbled. This hiring manager had not only forgotten about my interview, he also hated his job. A dangerous combination — and one to avoid.

He or she asks ill-advised questions during your interview. Does the hiring manager ask questions that make you feel uncomfortable, such as how many children you have or if you’re married? Hiring managers should avoid asking any questions based on race, religion, gender, age, national origin, marital status, sexual orientation, gender expression or identity, veteran or military status, and physical, mental or sensory disabilities. These are all “protected classes” under Washington state law. If you’re asked any of these types of questions, it means the hiring manager isn’t trained, isn’t experienced or may be unethical.

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His or her office is unusually disorganized. Early in my career, I accepted a job working for a manager whose office looked like a tornado had swept through it. I should have spotted the telltale signs during my job interview: She didn’t have a copy of my resume or the job posting, sticky notes covered her computer screen and desk, and stacks of paperwork were all over her office. Unfortunately, her disorganization spilled over into how she managed people and her department.

Other employees avoid the hiring manager. As you walk down the hallway to the hiring manager’s office or conference room for your interview, be aware of how other employees react to the manager. Do they quickly turn around and walk away or dive behind cubicles? Look for signs that other employees are afraid of the hiring manager or are trying to avoid him or her.

He or she doesn’t focus on the job interview. The hiring manager should be 100 percent focused on the candidate and interview. Look for red flags, such as checking email, answering telephone calls, texting and speaking with other employees during your interview. Avoid accepting a job for a boss who doesn’t give you his or her full attention during your job interview.

Lisa Quast is the founder of Career Woman, Inc., and the author of the book Secrets of a Hiring Manager Turned Career Coach. Email her at lquast@careerwomaninc.com.