Posted by sureshkrishna on February 22, 2010
I resisted to write such an article for a long time (almost 3 years). I thought it is best written now. In the previous article about “How to be a good BOSS” few desirable characteristics are mentioned. What is not mentioned in that article is “How to be a BAD BOSS”. While i do want to write about the BAD BOSS, for this article i want to restrict the scope to few experiences that made one of my friend to quit his organization.
My friend (i call him “GoodFriend” in this article) joined this corporate in Mid of 2008 in Bay Area. He is a great quality assurance engineer with eight years of experience in Financial and Medical domains. GoodFriend joined this organization as this corporate “seems” to have good work culture. The hiring manager is same as his BOSS in the work too. So, at least the expectations of the candidate and the skill sets are known to the BOSS.
This BOSS seems to have a very bad mouth when it comes to employees and he had 4 tem-members for him self including my GoodFriend. The BOSS is an authoritative machine and wants to know each and everything that team-members do. Following are some of the questions that BOSS asks all the team members…
- You look so relaxed, don’t you have work ?
- BOSS sees the GoodFriend in cafeteria and starts asking about the work, results and deadlines.
- If the GoodFriend turns up to office later than 9.00am, he asks “Why were you late and why did you not call me”.
- If the GoodFriend needs a leave (even if it for 1 or 2 days), he needs to approach the BOSS at least 2 weeks earlier. Else, the BOSS is very angry and rebuke in front of the team.
- It’s been almost 2 years this GoodFriend has joined but till now he could work from home only 17 days. He is afraid that the BOSS would ask the details of each and every hour at home.
While the above are only some of the other non-technical stuff. Following are the sarcastic and insulting comments that this BOSS does. Some times GoodFriend feels that the BOSS nay be feeling that he is in a race with him (Boss).
- How many tests did you execute today and how much time each of them took ? And what did you do during the execution time.
- “Hay… GoodFriend, just listen to me. Don’t use your brain.”
- During the meetings, if the GoodFriend suggests some process or technical aspects, the BOSS would say, “Just follow what i say”.
- You are a good Quality Engineer but you should also learn Java and C# coding. You should be flexible. When the GoodFriend says that he has no interest in programming. He is labelled as “Rigid” , “non-cooperative” and “Non-obedient” employee.
Once the GoodFriend has gone thorough all this humiliation and workplace sarcasm, he finally decided to QUIT the job and joined another small company that he worked previously. He could not take this any more and everyone else in his department seems to believe the BOSS than him. Anyway, he joined his previous company and feels GREAT about the move. He says, he feels so relieved, relaxed and works with high enthusiasm.
Lessons Learnt :
The BOSS is the window to any Organization. If that window is bad, your doors to the Organization are almost shut.
You can not give your best, if you are not satisfied with Work and Morale at work place.
Your BOSS’s attitude can ruin your years of expertise and may make you feel devastated.
Posted in communication, management, Technology | Tagged: bad, boss, employee, employer, good | 77 Comments »
Posted by sureshkrishna on November 3, 2009
Some of my random observations and rants about BAD managers and bosses…
Motivation : Manager thinks that every employee has the motivation and he need not do anything. This is a typical problem i see in the managers who grow up the ladder from the technical streams. These manager’s seldom believe that employees need to be motivated to do their best and not all “jobs” are interesting.
Don’t assume that employees have Motivation because you are paying for their work.
Right Job : At the time of recruiting, you have a set of job responsibilities and tasks that you want an employee to fulfill. Things change in time and so are the responsibilities. As a manager, it’s your JOB to assign the right Task/Job to your employee. Are you wondering why your team-mate is not able to succeed or he is not performing to his level you imagined ?
Choose and Assign the right job for your team. If you ask them to do an ODD job, then apologize to them and explain the situation.
Information Sharing : Information spreads fast. Very Fast! If something is happening with your team, project or customer. Inform the team with the right information AS SOON AS POSSIBLE – ASAP. Holding back the information or maintaining the secrecy has a negative impact on the employees. They loose trust on you. Be informed that your employees always have contacts to get the information.
Understand that Information Sharing is CRITICAL. Never share an information that is stale and known to everyone except you.
All-In-One Responsibility : Some managers have the concept of “All-In-One/ Open Responsibilities”. This means, everyone in the team should be able to do everything. You know what, this is the Disaster Recipe. When we call set of individuals as team, we are talking about individuals who are specialized in an area and able to collate different strengths for a common goal. The side effects of this theory is that the individual employees are completely demoralized as they don’t work on any specialized task anymore. They are not experts in any area as they switch the context of the tasks very frequently. e.g. today they work on Java issue, tomorrow they work on Perl problem and day after they work on Install Shield. The important side-effect that i see is that none of the tasks will be “Complete” or “Perfect” or “Designed to Last”, because no one owns it.
Assign the Ownership of tasks and define the Responsibilities to Individuals.
Appreciation of Efforts : Individuals like to hear their appreciation in group and criticism in private. Unfortunately, some managers do other way round and this really sucks. Even if you slog for months and months, this manager does not appreciate you and he does not even look at you. He probably has an attitude of “You are working and I am working. You are getting pain and i am getting paid”.
If you need a stable team, be a God Father to your team in every respect.
I will keep on adding more and more to this list with my experience. I strongly feel that everyone knows what to do but very few know “What NOT to do” 😉
Did you experience similar things at your work place ? Do you have more points to add to this list ? Please do share your experiences…
Posted in communication, Entrepreneurship, Startups, Technology | Tagged: boss, corporations, employee, what not to do | 5 Comments »