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RUN!!! I don't care who you are - nobody deserves to be treated like this. It was maybe how he was brought up but it's inexcusable to treat an employee this way. If he's doing this on your second day it will only get worse. I would respectfully, and calmly, tell him that nobody should be treated like this and that you don't respond well to it. Make sure that he's aware that if it continues he'll be looking for someone else to abuse - but be ready for that result. The good news is that there are plenty of jobs out there so finding someone who is respectful, builds up and trains his/her employees, and is fun to work for shouldn't be difficult. The man's just a dick - when you become a leader, remember this experience and change lives for the better. You'll be a happier person as well.
 

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The Dude
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No doubt. The "old guard" gruff a-hole construction types is a dinosaur on its way to extinction. Not just something you have to suck it up because its "like that everywhere". It's not like that everywhere.
 

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I say hold your fire until you figure things out. Don't be shy,, don't back down, but maintain a level head and get through it. Stick it out. And maybe you don't know sh** after all like you think you do. Seriously. Lots of folks have been there.

Another thing. Keep your personal goals in mind. That includes learning how to manage, and it isn't for everyone. Start thinking about accountability. Yours and everyone else's. How are you going to get there, in terms of keeping others accountable, etc?

Finally, work on your banter. Get out of your shell and practice various methods. One of them will suit you. Don't be a shy, educated nerd, for lack of a better term. You need to achieve a level of respect on the ground, and knowledge and projecting confidence will get you down the road.

One last thing. If being too soft is still an issue, dammit you better work on some strategies to address matters. There are many ways to skin that cat, and it comes back to defining jobs, timelines (expectations) and accountability. If you don't, jobs progress leisurely or other jobs jump the line with all sorts of excuses. Practice versions of this line: "when will this bedone...This needs to get done....I'm not interested in excuses...why the h... not?..etc.."
 

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Lots of good chat here. My two cents is this.
1. If you are salary NEVER give more than 10% free overtime. Most bad bosses will work you 80 hours and that is thier fault, not yours. They have no system of their system is to abuse.
2. When the boss demeans you and gives you that kind of BS do TWO things.
a. Answer as someone here stated or similar, have banter to come back with but good natured, I liked "I am sure you are not talking to me like that" etc.
b. WRITE IT DOWN, MAKE BOOK. If you are the lead or super on site write it down if the boss does that do anyone else, including subs. Be ready.
3. Constructive termination is a ***** for companies. Making book means that IF you walk you can support that you were wrongfully terminated. That means unemployment for a few weeks at least.
4. Make a lunch appointment with your boss, you need to tell him IN PRIVATE, that his demeaning you in public undermines the entire workforce and every sub on site. Explain that you will not tolerate it at all.
5. At the lunch meeting, explain your goals in learning the job and doing your best, let him know that you want his knowledge, not his ire.
6. Let him know that you will be putting in 10% overtime on salary maximum once you are up to speed. Explain that 10% is rational and that when you gain control if it can't be done in 10% then the division of labor is wrong or the company is not doing it right or that you are not good enough. Either way an average of 10% overtime long term is the limit.

I know managers that will terminate salaried employees that can not perform their duties in 10% overtime. They are the same managers that look at what the job entails and adjusts the work load and moves responsibilities around to assure that the work load is balanced. These are the managers you need to find to learn from in the end. Burning out employees is NOT sustainable. Having no life but the company is NOT sustainable. There is a time for that but limit it severely and if the boss will not get you there then make a planned move to a new company ASAP, even at a little less, as long as you find the right boss.
 

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My first long time boss was a little like this. He wasn't insulting, but he liked to yell at people, keep everyone scrambling.

There was a day when we had two jobsites going, and he sent a worker over to our site in his van to grab some supplies from us. He called me around the same time to find out what our supply situation was like.

He asked how much of one product we had and I said (as I was walking over to find out) that I thought we had x buckets left. He started yelling that he can't deal in "I thinks" and he has to deal in "I knows" etc.

I lost it. But not in a **** you kinda way. I yelled back that I was literally on my way to check our supply, and I'm not just standing around with my thumb up my ass, I'm actually working for him, and I'm working to make sure things are going his way etc. Then I reported the number of buckets we had and hung up.

Everyone was just staring at me with their mouths dropped.

We loaded the van, sent it to the other jobsite, and went back to work.

Boss showed up about an hour later, apologized for yelling, and that was it. Never yelled at me again. In the two years that I stayed there I got 4 raises without asking - 1$ each time.

Not saying it'll work with this boss. But it worked for me.
 

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No doubt. The "old guard" gruff a-hole construction types is a dinosaur on its way to extinction. Not just something you have to suck it up because its "like that everywhere". It's not like that everywhere.
I like the dinosaurs. Too many wimps out there. If a guy has to ask an internet forum how to stand his ground and growl when somebody gives him the business, he’s not a killer and should probably just apply for a position elsewhere.

There’s no guidebook for how to be a violent, assertive, dominating character in the face of confrontation. It is spontaneous and you cant fake it.

If talking doesnt work you should leave.
 

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The Dude
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I like the dinosaurs.
I kind of like the dinosaurs. Some of them anyway. There's the ones that are just rough, and its mostly banter - and there's the ones that are genuine honest to god abusive deck heads. The kind that really don't give a rats ass if anybody gets hurt, except that it causes them headaches, so they get even more pissed off.
 

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It is spontaneous and you cant fake it.
Actually it can be a learned and controlled attitude and reaction set. I always understood banter, had a hard time with theory X managers. Generally they know nothing very little, especially about leading men, can not think except to the job at hand and no pre-planning, demean others in front of peers, yell, use profanity, and generally are a PITA.
Remember the saying "grow a pair"? That is what can be learned actually. How to deal straight up with assholes in a way that is acceptable in public.
They are generally bullies and will back down.
 

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I don’t agree that assholes are generally bullies. I can be an ******* when my guys are ****ing up and costing me money. I’m not a bully just handling my business. I also don’t back down from anyone. Some guys are posers for sure and will.

There’s no guidebook for how to be a violent, assertive, dominating character in the face of confrontation. It is spontaneous and you cant fake it.
Actually it can be a learned and controlled attitude and reaction set.

Controlled attitudes and reaction sets sound like useful tools but I’m not talking about that. One of my therapists used to recommend techniques like that. Thing is, they don’t work for guys like me who go into the red when threatened. From there if the situation doesn’t de-escalate (because I’m a large fella and this isn’t lost on people) then the beast comes out and I’m in the black commiting violence against said *******. Never had to ask anyone on a forum, been doing it my whole life. Started scrapping in third grade. At the age of ten I was seeing guys get beat in the head with framing hammers. Mashed some guys face up in high school in retaliation for him jumping me. My old man was severely beaten by about four cops. I have pummeled and been pummeled. I’ve had my head stomped in way past going unconscious by a guy who outweighed me by forty pounds. I have been in many firefights with the taliban. Been around lots of violence. When you’re like me, you don’t have the opportunity to think when you feel threatened. It’s a ride and you’d better be strapped in.

So to say you can learn what I know and do in response to aggression like it’s some 1-2-3 program is a load of doodoo. My spinal erectors go stiff as a ****ing board, my foot placement changes, my shoulders lift, my eyesight becomes more focused, my pulse increases… You can’t fake physiology by using some clever quip when your boss yells at you.

Not saying that’s not a viable tactic to use in order to keep your job and stay out of jail. The point is that in the mind of an aggressive, violent person, keeping your job and staying out of jail aren’t even on the radar when your crocodile brain starts looking for a weapon to beat somebody with.
 
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