A workplace abuse story of hope

When I started my marketing job, it felt like a good ol’ boys’ club. In my first couple weeks on the job, the men did pushups together. When I didn’t participate, my boss told me, overweight and the only woman in the office that day, that exercise is important. I was appalled.

Nitpicking was the management style of choice. Constant re-writes and re-designs with no explanations came across as power and control moves. Color choices, headline text, logo details, and other petty changes became more of a priority than responding to most of my emails.

I didn’t feel like a respected team member. I felt treated like a child.

I saw others deal with similar power and control moves — even worse authoritarian directives that were demeaning and unnecessary.

Meanwhile, there was little communication of higher level initiatives and decisions as is typical in healthy work cultures. There were no goals by role that tied in with a vision. There were no consistent...

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