The Career Doctor™

by Dr. Jacqueline Hornor Plumez

Looking for a first job? Thinking of changing careers? Facing a lay-off? The Career Doctor™ is a Larchmont psychologist specializing in career counseling. If you'd like to ask a question of your own, use the anonymous form below, and she might answer you here. Read more about the Career Doctor here. Contact information is here.


Dear Career Doctor:

I work in an IT company for a fool. My boss treats all new recruits like school children. He gives "homework", asking us to prepare stuff on which we are quizzed the next day. At the end of the shift he gets hold of people when they leave for home and asks them, "What did you learn today? Explain everything to me". I understand that he is concerned about his business and wants competent people who are smart enough to handle the job. But don't you think he is going too far? I feel like I am back in middle school where at the end of every class the teacher used to question the students on the topics she taught. I am fresh out of college and this is my first real job. Is this normal behavior from bosses or is this guy a nut?


Dear VJ:

I don't think your boss is a nut. He just needs some coaching to develop the interpersonal skills required to accomplish his admirable goals -- making sure he has well-trained employees.

On the positive side, this is a man who is trying to give you top rate skills and knowledge. He is providing very valuable training. (These days, I usually hear far more complaints about managers who are too busy to teach their employees anything.)

If you don't need the training, your boss will soon realize that you are his "top student," and probably reward you with a raise, promotion, or at least the most challenging assignments. If you do need the training, ignore his grating manner and accept it.

Your boss sounds like he has an arrogant or degrading manner. If he did the same thing in a jovial or helpful manner, you and the rest of his team would probably appreciate what he is trying to do. Don't let his style keep you from honing your skills and being at the "top of his class."

The Career Doctor

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The Career Doctor™ is Larchmont psychologist and career counselor, Dr. Jacqueline Hornor Plumez.

Her office is at 90 Beechtree Drive in Larchmont, 914-834-1982.