8 Signs Your Boss Is In Trouble and May Get Fired


signs your boss is in trouble

Whether you have a toxic boss or a great boss that genuinely cares about you, they’re ultimately held to performance standards that they need to achieve.

And if they’re not hitting their metrics, or others in the organization feel like they aren’t leading or collaborating in the way that they’re expecting, then their job security may be in trouble.

To that end, this article looks at the most common signs your boss is in trouble and may be getting fired.

They’re Excluded From Key Emails, Meetings, or Decisions

meeting room

If you find that there are important meetings or decisions that you would expect someone in your boss’ role to be included in, and your boss is not, that could be a sign that they’re in some trouble.

Particularly if your boss used to be included in those types of meetings and, then all of the sudden are no longer being invited, that may be an indicator that they’re on thin ice.

There Are Negative Comments or Gossip About Them From Other Departments

work gossip

Even in a remote work environment where folks are not in the same physical office, people still talk and gossip. 

And if you hear passing comments from folks in other departments that are negative towards your boss or your department as a whole, that’s not a great sign as to how your boss is perceived throughout the organization.

There is a Change in Your Boss’ Behavior

frustrated person

If you notice that your boss seems more stressed, distant, disengaged, or checked out, those could all be signs your boss is in trouble.

That’s particularly the case if there isn’t a particular event that you’re aware of that might be driving that behavior (i.e., an important high stress project, something going on in their personal life, etc.) and it’s a sudden, unexpected change.

Your Boss is Removed From Key Projects

business meeting

A common sign that someone is perceived to be struggling at an organization is when they’re removed from key projects. And particularly those that they may have been leading.

If you have had a sense that a project that your boss or your team was leading has been behind plan, and your boss is removed from that, it could be a sign your boss is in some trouble.

You’re Asked to Review Your Boss By Management

performance review

Many organizations have a 360 degree review process where direct reports, peers, and managers, are all asked to review particular individuals. If those reviews are a standard part of your performance review culture, then being asked to review your boss is totally normal.

However, if you don’t have a process like that, and are asked by HR or management for feedback on your boss, that could be a sign that there’s a perception they may be struggling in their role and could be in some trouble.

Your Team is Behind on Their Numbers


One of the most black and white signs your boss is in trouble is if your team is behind on their numbers.

Good organizations are goal oriented and metrics driven so if your team is not achieving what it’s held accountable to, then that’s a pretty obvious sign that trouble could be lurking for your team leader.

Your Team is Unmotivated and Disengaged

person not working

If you feel like your team is unmotivated, disengaged, and generally not particularly well regarded by the rest of the organization, that certainly is something that doesn’t reflect well on your boss. 

If that team dynamic continues long term, your boss could be in trouble and wind up losing their job.

There is a Change in Reporting Structure

signs your boss wants you to leave

Another one of the black and white signs your boss is in trouble is if there is a change in reporting structure where your boss losses responsibility.

That could mean members of your team moving over into another department. Or maybe your entire teams rolls under another team. Lastly, it might mean that your boss begins reporting to a lower level of management then they were before.

However the specifics, if there is a change in reporting structure where your boss losses responsibility or seniority, then that could mean trouble for your boss.


Hopefully, this article has been helpful to you in identifying some of the common signs your boss is in trouble and may be getting fired. 

Ultimately, if your boss does lose their job, it doesn’t mean that you will too, nor that you need to leave your current employer.

A boss is just one of many aspects of a job and you’ll ultimately need to assess your own risk and priorities when it comes to your career after an event like this.

About the author

Dan Slocum

Dan is the founder of Best Fit Work and is a business professional with over 10 years of experience. He has been a hiring and people manager on multiple occasions, and has also gone through the hiring process himself at a variety of different companies. Dan writes to share content, tools, and resources to help people discover and thrive in their own best fit work.

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