Here's What to Do When Your Boss Doesn't Care About You

Vicki Salemi

If you think your boss couldn't care less about your career growth, unfortunately, you're not alone. In fact, according to a new Monster poll, 72 percent of respondents said they do not feel like their manager or supervisor is interested in their job growth.

Now, what are you going to do about it? The key to success involves being proactive, not reactive. With that in mind, here are some ways to continue your career growth when your boss isn't helping pave the way.

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Find another boss who does care. When it's apparent your boss just isn't that into you, it's time to look for one that is (yes, they do exist). If they don't care about your growth, they don't have your back and this trickles into other areas of office culture as well. If they don't support you, it's hard to expect them to go to bat for you when it's salary review time, promotion time or time to look at expanding your role to delegating to others.

Everyone deserves a boss who cares about their accomplishments as well as their goals. The effort and focus devoted to looking for a new job is certainly much better than putting up with a boss who doesn't have your best interests in mind. Plus, as frustrated as you may feel with this supervisor, the mere act of starting today to look for a new job will hopefully lessen the energy exerted on this frustrating situation. After all, it's temporary and will hopefully be in your rearview mirror.

Accept the realities. A common issue with a boss who doesn't care about his or her reports is about equal pay. What can you do when you discover you earn less than your colleague doing the same work? Do your due diligence and conduct research to find out how much you should be paid (it may even be more than what that colleague is making). Schedule time on your boss's calendar to address it conversationally (not confrontationally even though that's probably your gut instinct) and follow through.

When they say they can't do anything or they tried and the inequity is due to reason X, the point of the matter is this: The writing's on the wall. Yes, it's disheartening, but at least now you know your options: Stay where you are and continue to get underpaid or look for a better job where you're paid what you're worth and recognized for the work you do.

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When you work incredibly hard and want recognition and your boss just says, "So?" or you're seeking to attend a training class or you want a promotion with increased responsibilities (and a nice title to go along with it) and the answer is a blank stare, it can be incredibly frustrating.

Don't fight it. Accept it and be grateful you at least now know what you need to do. Instead of dwelling on the point that your boss simply doesn't care, make this a productive use of your time and energy instead. Look for a new job.

Seek support elsewhere. If you don't have a mentor yet, now's the time to find one. And if you do have one, now's the time to reach out to them. Meet with them to discuss your goals and brainstorm potential new goals you may not have even thought about. Not only does it help to have a road map to help you get to your next step, it's reassuring to know you have people to look up to who are on your side.

Instead of constantly having to prove yourself to a boss who just won't get it anyway, seek guidance and support elsewhere. Plus, this person can also serve as a sounding board and source of insight when you ask what you're worth with your new salary once you start interviewing.

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Be the change you want to see. If you are a supervisor, take a moment to ask yourself, "Do my direct reports realize I care about their growth?" Show, don't tell.

The next time you meet with them, indicate you want to talk about where they see their career going and most importantly, how you can help get them there. Do they need to hone a particular skill or gain experience on a specific project? Create opportunities for them while realizing your actions will likely demonstrate you truly do care about their growth. Be vocal, be proactive and recognize their hard work and teamwork when you witness it.

Vicki Salemi is an author, public speaker, columnist and career expert for Monster, a global leader in successfully connecting people and job opportunities. Utilizing her more than 15 years of experience in corporate recruiting and human resources, Vicki empowers job seekers with insights and first-hand knowledge from the halls of HR. She is the author of "Big Career in the Big City" and a regular contributor to The Huffington Post, Forbes.com, The New York Post and SUCCESS.com. Vicki has also been quoted in many top business and consumer outlets worldwide, including The Wall Street Journal, USA Today, NBC News, Dateline Australia, Fast Company and Women's Health. As a recognized influencer in the recruitment industry, Vicki often interviews notable names, such as Gloria Steinem, Derek Jeter and Michael J. Fox, about their own careers. She is also the former creator/host/producer of mediabistroTV's "Score That Job," and was named one of the top 25 career bloggers in the U.S. by BlogHer in 2011. Vicki previously held recruiting and HR roles at major financial institutions including Deloitte and KPMG. Vicki graduated from Lafayette College with a Bachelor of Arts degree in psychology, and earned a management certificate from Cornell University. More information can be found at www.vickisalemi.com as well as on Twitter @vickisalemi.