All Posts, Stress Management, (5) Comments

8 Reasons Why You Should Work for a Tough Boss

Submitted by Ethan

swimming with sharksWhen we say work for a tough boss, we’re not necessarily saying someone like the Kevin Spacey character in “Swimming with Sharks” or the Meryl Streep character in “The Devil Wears Prada”—although if you can tough it out with someone like that, go for it—no, what we’re talking about are just normal, run-of-the-mill, tough people to work for, with and please.

This may sound counter-intuitive to you but working for a tough & demanding boss does a number of things that will HELP YOU when starting out on your career path.

1. Working for a tough boss teaches you to be at the top of your own game. If you’re not, don’t worry, they’ll surely let you know. By consistently working at a high level for a demanding boss, you’ll be stretching and able to perform at that level for longer and longer periods of time. Instead of being yelled at for a mistake every two days, it will turn into every two months or even less.

2. Inside the company, everyone who knows this “tough” boss knows that they are hard to work for… so if you CAN work for them and keep them happy, your stock within the company rises and opens up other opportunities for you down the road.

3. This demanding boss also gives you an “out” when asking for assistance in terms of performing your job. You get to blame the rush or circumstances of your requests to the IT department, the mail room or operations on your boss, thus getting what you (and by extension he or she) needs in the quickest time possible.

4. A tough boss also has a reputation within their industry outside of the company and that too can help you when interviewing at a competitor. Either the competitor knows that you “know the drill” given your current or previous tough boss OR they might want to poach you from your boss as “payback”... it does happen.

5. When a tough boss gives you positive feedback on a job well done, it’s like gold and you’ll feel like a million bucks.

6. You will develop a thick skin and be able to take criticism better than people who haven’t worked for a tough or demanding boss. The maturity and poise that you gain through these traits will shine through when compared to your peers.

7. The tough and demanding bosses are usually the ones who are extremely smart and know their business inside and out. If they didn’t, the company would have gotten rid of them a while ago because they are tough and demanding without the performance to back it up. Once you become trusted, these bosses can turn into mentors who will teach you what they know which then opens up career options for you down the road.

8. Lastly, if you can thrive when working for a tough and demanding boss, when it does come time to either move on or be promoted, usually that tough boss turns out to be your biggest supporter.

On the flip side, don’t be fooled by just a regular nasty person with no talent trying to disguise themselves as a tough, demanding and smart boss… these are the folks that you want to stay away from. You’ll be able to spot a boss like this if they change the rules constantly, don’t give honest feedback/advice and aren’t respected by their peers from inside or outside the company and industry. Advice: proceed with caution.

Lastly, in Hollywood, all bets are off.


#1. Posted by jodith

My favorite bosses have always been the tough ones.  They demand a high level of service, but at the same time, they respect those that can meet their standards.  And I respect them for demanding those high standards. I’ve worked for several, both men and women, who I would work for again in a heartbeat even though I had to work my butt off when I was with them.  Those were my all-time favorite jobs, not because of the company or the coworkers, but because of the tough boss.

#2. Posted by Stephanie

Ethan and I feel the exact same way.  Thanks for the comment, Jodith!

#3. Posted by .(JavaScript must be enabled to view this email address)

Tough bosses with respect are the best to learn from as an administrative assistant.

#4. Posted by anthony morrison

I have also a tough boss like this. But many times I feel good for toughness of the boss because from that I had learned many of the things from that and also able to face any situation on my own creativity without take help of others. So over all this toughness is good for me for better career.

#5. Posted by resume service

I’ve always appreciated my tough bosses. When I’ve had tough bosses, my work was much better and I was working much harder to stay sharp and at the top of my game. When I’ve had friendly bosses, I’ve noticed my work and my coworkers’ work have been sub-par at best.





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