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Tame Your Terrible Office Tyrant: How to Manage Childish Boss Behavior and Thrive in Your Job 1st Edition

33 customer reviews
ISBN-13: 978-0470457641
ISBN-10: 0470457643
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Editorial Reviews


"Exceptionally helpful new book...excellent tips."
- JOYCE LAIN KENNEDY, national career columnist, Tribune Media Services, author of multiple career bestsellers, including Resumes For Dummies.

"Every firm will want to ensure that they are not a TOT incubator!"
SABEER BHATIA, cofounder of Hotmail, visionary, developer of the "Silicon Valley of India"

"Lynn Taylor helps you decode your boss...what barbs mean and how to deflect them."

"A savvy work read."

"Useful to many who feel trapped dealing with bad upper management."

"Insightful and practical…for anyone (and that means everyone) with a boss."
ROBIN KOVAL, bestselling coauthor of The Power of Nice & The Power of Small

"Nobody understands the psychodynamics of workplace relationships like Lynn Taylor."
DAPHNE ROSE KINGMA, bestselling author of ten relationship books, 6-time Oprah guest

"The advice in Taylor's book is preferable to going on the hunt for another job, except as a last resort."

"Well-researched and thought-out…Being able to identify behaviors and their triggers, and use of Taylor’s coping strategies, will increase productivity and bring out the best in every employee — from the top down."

From the Inside Flap

Do you have a boss who acts like a demanding, stubborn, fickle, distracted, or needy child or engages in bullying tantrums, micro-management, mood swings, or endless whining? We all have to deal with imperfect bosses. Unfortunately, some of us have to deal with bad bosses who—if you aren't careful—can sink your career along with their own.

In Tame Your Terrible Office Tyrant (TOT), Lynn Taylor gives you practical, real-world tactics for dealing with childish boss behavior without sacrificing your principles or exacerbating office strife. Wielding truth wrapped in hilarity, Taylor takes you behind the bossy blustering so that you can achieve your goals—and career excellence. Bosses will also benefit from this guide to gain insight on what not to do with their teams. If you are a CEO, you know instinctively that Terrible Office Tyrants (TOTs) wreak havoc in your company, harming the bottom line. A special section will help you stop TOT behavior in its tracks–for a more humanized, productive workplace.

Like you, Taylor knows childish behavior when she sees it. In fact, bad bosses and kids who act out have plenty in common. But tirades, moodiness, and demanding behavior don't have to ruin your workday. In Tame Your Terrible Office Tyrant (TOT), Taylor shows you how to build positive relationships with even the most out-of-control boss and thrive in your job. The key to success lies in dealing with a TOT much like a parent deals with a troublesome toddler.

No matter what kind of TOT you face each day, Taylor profiles them all here—from brats to little lost lambs—and shows you how to successfully manage their behavior for the sake of your career and your sanity. Based on extensive interviews and in-depth research, this indispensable guide demonstrates that with the right approach, you can tame your TOT.


Product Details

  • Hardcover: 288 pages
  • Publisher: Wiley; 1 edition (July 20, 2009)
  • Language: English
  • ISBN-10: 0470457643
  • ISBN-13: 978-0470457641
  • Product Dimensions: 5.8 x 1 x 8.8 inches
  • Shipping Weight: 13.6 ounces (View shipping rates and policies)
  • Average Customer Review: 4.3 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (33 customer reviews)
  • Amazon Best Sellers Rank: #131,456 in Books (See Top 100 in Books)

Related Media

More About the Author

Lynn Taylor is a leading national workplace expert and author of Tame Your Terrible Office Tyrant (TOT): How to Manage Childish Boss Behavior and Thrive in Your Job (John Wiley & Sons). Taylor is a Contributor to, a regular Work blogger for, has been a guest writer for, and is a top Google-ranked "workplace expert."

As CEO of Lynn Taylor Consulting, she provides research-based, lively seminars to organizations on how to establish a more productive workforce. She has been interviewed on NPR, Fox, ABC Network TV and, and has been quoted in The Washington Post, The New York Times, The Wall Street Journal and hundreds of other media outlets over 20 years. Taylor has coined such terms as "Gen U," for Generation "Unretired" and "Tempreneur," for entrepreneurial project workers. She often addresses topics on careers, job searches, hiring, managing up and "how to humanize the workplace" in the news media.

Taylor received her B.A. in Journalism and Mass Communications from New York University and lives in Southern California. For more information, visit,, or their blogs, or call 1-800-454-0083.

Customer Reviews

Most Helpful Customer Reviews

35 of 39 people found the following review helpful By RAL on July 29, 2009
Format: Hardcover
I have been a senior manager at a successful printing company for over 50 years. During that time, I have had as many as 100 employees. Even though this engaging book mostly deals with how the employee should handle their bosses, it is also a valuable lesson for managers who want to know how they are irritating their employees. There is also a management section on how to prevent the proliferation of "junior TOTs" among your staff, which gave me ideas, too.

I must admit that when I've been under pressure over the years to meet deadlines, there have been times when I behaved a bit like a tyrant. I have sometimes felt that my staff needed to be scolded like kids, before they did their job correctly. I believed that I had that right, because I paid them. From my point of view, I felt that a boss has every right do so because he (or she) is just that, "the boss." When I finally realized that they were laughing behind my back, I decided to seek advice on "Bossism."

After seeing Ms. Taylor's interview on TV, I decided to buy her book. Boy, what a lesson I learned! I wish I had read it sooner. It made me start to look at my employees from their perspective of me. I've begun to change my behavior and have started appreciating the employee's perspective of working for a bossy boss.
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18 of 19 people found the following review helpful By Mark Butler on July 21, 2009
Format: Hardcover Verified Purchase
If you've ever wondered how to improve your job situation, one of the first steps is to improve your relationship with your boss, and career expert Lynn Taylor has some amazing insights along with some great humor in her book, Tame Your Terrible Office Tyrant. First of all, check out the book's cover. You'll notice that Lynn's term "Terrible Office Tyrant" breaks down to TOT. Lynn believes that many bosses possess the same traits as tots and toddlers. Some are hard to handle (whining, bullying, territorialism) and others are less abrasive but still challenging (fickleness, forgetfulness, short attention spans.) Throughout the book, Lynn provides helpful, friendly advice on dealing with the Top 20 types of boss behaviors, backed with her years of experience in the careers field. The end result? You'll learn how to cope with difficult bosses, and position yourself to have a stronger, more positive rapport with your boss. That can create much needed job security, as well as position you towards future success in your career. A must read!
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8 of 8 people found the following review helpful By sanunit on August 8, 2009
Format: Hardcover Verified Purchase
This book covers so many types of bosses that I have had. But I never knew how to deal with them. So now I do. The author had fun with the subject. I even laughed out loud. I would recommend this book to people who are just starting out in the work force; to those who have to deal everyday with terrible bosses; and to bosses themselves because the information is very helpful. Maybe childish bosses will recognize themselves and change. That would be great! I could even add a few of my own terrible-tyrant boss types. Hope she does a sequel.
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10 of 11 people found the following review helpful By Cube Dweller on August 1, 2009
Format: Hardcover
I guess it's now official that bad bosses act like they're in their terrible twos, since there's a book about it. I have several bosses who range from subtle tantrum throwers to demanding, oblivious or moody TOTs. When I first read about this, I was so glad that someone finally noticed. I was even happier to see the tips and stories, which you can easily use. The book helps you see how using empathy but also setting boundaries like a parent works wonders. My bosses have been more human towards me recently as a result. I am using some of the author's advice with co-workers who "act" like they're my boss, and it's interesting to see them thrown off guard. I was hoping there might also be a little section on TOT co-workers, but when I read sections over with that slant, many of the rules still apply.
I'm now a little more sensitive to my own actions too. When my assistant seemed frustrated recently, I spent the time to understand what was really bothering her, instead of avoiding it, which I typically did before. I like the idea that TOTs are not bad bosses or people all the time, they're just kids that need training or "taming," and that we all can be TOTs if we don't watch ourselves. (Maybe someone's using this book on me...good for them!) This is definitely worth buying.
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12 of 14 people found the following review helpful By Larry Underwood on October 12, 2009
Format: Hardcover
Lynn Taylor's observations about most bosses in corporate America are astute; solving the mysteries of dealing with their childish behavior could be quite tricky, however. With so many pompous CEOs with their staffs of micro-managing drones running around (who are equally as pompous), trying to deal with them in the clever way Taylor suggests is easier said than done. Proceed with caution.

Clearly, her strategy is useless, the further up the corporate ladder you try to tame; awkward manipulation of Taylor's methods could lead to an early retirement. Its application is best suited for the conventional small to mid-sized offices, where face to face interaction is going on. Even then, the devious boss who's already read this book may think they're tyring to be worked over and react in a more negative fashion than before the attempted "attitude adjustment".

Regardless, there are enough relevent observations to make this a book to recommend to any beleagured employee trying to come to grips with a boss who acts like a three year old. Hang in there. You'll probably last longer than the boss, anyway.
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