All your efforts to work around an inattentive boss won't help much if you're stuck in a truly dead-end job. How do you know when it's time to bail? Career experts say these are a few signs that it's time to move on:

  • Your boss blames you. "That's a very clear sign that he's not your advocate," says leadership development coach Thuy Sindell.
  • Your office feels like high school all over again. Lots of workers and bosses don't get along, but if the situation seems juvenile - if there's an excess of gossiping, catty behaviour or backstabbing - it will be hard for you to succeed.
  • There's nowhere to go. There's no sense in getting your boss to be an advocate, points out Kimberly Douglas, president of FireFly Facilitation Inc., if there are no possible promotions or new skills to learn.
  • Your boss isn't respected by other executives. If your boss isn't aligned with the company's goals and faces being fired, you might end up being collateral damage.
  • The company doesn't perceive IT as an equal business partner. A company that doesn't value its IT department won't be investing in technology or staff, says Eric P. Bloom, president and founder of management training firm Manager Mechanics LLC, and you'll likely find your skills becoming obsolete if you stick around.

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How to cope with an unsupportive boss