Monday, February 21, 2011

What makes you a Bad Boss ......

Have been reading a lot about what makes a person a good boss (read manager)..... on my way back (I travel Delhi-Gurgaon-Delhi daily for work, so have almost 2 hours daily to spend with myself and to immerse into all kind of gibberish thoughts), yesterday , i was thinking reverse..... what are the qualities that make a boss or a manager detested….. I happened to have the providential opportunity of working with a couple of such people in my five years of corporate odyssey ….. So, all I did was , recollect the reminiscences with them and their sub ordinates and jot down a list of behaviours that made them disliked , and if practiced regularly, shall make you a Bad boss too :

  • Do you play favourites?..... I understand that its very human not to like or dislike two people similarly….but while making decisions or assigning responsibilities ….. it has to be the work done and the potential that should be the considered criteria and not the relationship shared…..Alas ! I have observed few very senior and sensible managers playing favourites and choosing wrong people to do wrong jobs and becoming the least preferred managers.
  • Are you a Power Centric?....... If delegating power is not something you are keen of doing , I bet , you are leading a bundle of clerks and That’s a good thing only if you are too contented with your current role and position because until and unless you have a team of people who are skilled enough to manage atleast their share of work without much supervision from you, you shall never be able to gear up for next level.
  • Does your daily schedule include Public Rebuke & Screaming ?.......... Nobody …… I reiterate, Nobody, shall ever like to hear his/her shortcomings ….. and if told in public, there are fair chances of reduction in the quality of work and a good amount of time going into looking out for other employment options….. Amazingly, the fact that I noted is, even the top most people have a mindset that public scolding will help in improvement, while the results have always been opposite…. If you don’t respect your people, you are advised to learn to handle high percentage of attrition.
  • Did any of your ex or existing subordinate ever complain about being treated as a Machine and not human?.......... High time you understand the age-old saying “Treat Others The Way You Want To Be Treated”…….. .... Work overload, Unnecessary pressure, Numerous follow ups for minute things, Usage of abusive language, Direct/Indirect Instructions for late sitting, Threatening of firing………. All my attrition analysis reports have always been full of such words ……which clearly says that in today’s buoyant market where there’s no dearth of opportunities, Talent, if not nurtured, shall find it’s way out easily…..declaring you unable to retain them.
  • Do you belong to the rare species of managers who have an obvious inclination towards any particular community/state/gender/age -group or language?............ Discrimination, in any of its form, is professionally as well as morally incorrect……and if not avoided, brings you a unanimous abhorrence.
  • How many times have you had an open communication forum with your team?..... If the answer is zero, then my dear friend , you seem not to be receptive for open communication….. Poor listening skills is a quality which a Bad boss should must have!!...... Gone are the times when a dictatory attitude would have brought you appreciation……….Today , everyone wants a Mentor and a Guide, someone who will help in climbing the success ladder…… someone to whom they can go with all their queries and under whose guidance they can pursue their quest for excellence……And if you don’t fit the bill, please be ready to win the title of most disliked manager.
  • Are you in time for most of your meetings and appointments?......... Let’s be honest, Most of us still carry a mental block that all important people should enter a meeting at the last….Isn’t it??........ That’s rubbish!... disrespecting others time is not less than a crime…..the more u make them wait, the more disregard they shall have for you.
  • How does the concept of building up Successors sound to you?..... Well, That’s a well known HR practice in all good companies, they expect you to identify and develop your potential successor in your team….I have faced a lot of resistance (most of the times not accepted openly) from all senior levels while conducting this exercise……. People have a tendency of not liking the fact that their juniors can be as competent as themselves……….They don’t generally get along with the person they see their competition in……which is sad…….First thing first, they are not your competitors….Understand the difference between a successor and a competitor… …If you build up such an efficient team where people can replace you as well…..chances, and very bright ones, are that you shall be considered to be moved to the next level without much hassles.

These were my observations that I could recollect, shall be updating with the new experiences…..!!


  1. dats a nice start ruchi...keep it up...hope we could communicate this to our bosses!!!!