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Troubled Times Increase Bad Management Practices


Dan Morrill Posted by

Let’s face it, the boss you hate, who is Machiavellian, angry and leads through fear is just hitting their stride with a slacking economy, a rise in unemployment, and fear over continued employment, this is just going to be not an employee’s time.

It is commonly known that the best people, the ones that that the company cannot afford to lose are the first ones who flee a company that is having problems. What is generally left behind are folks who feel like they must stay for whatever reason, economic, positional, fear, or comfort. That means the boss who is already on edge is busy trying to get more out of people, and even good bosses might be tempted to revert to power and control tactics trying to keep the department afloat that has lost the ones who used to carry the department.

It is also interesting to note that when it comes to layoff’s, it is also those that are often ignore the shadow organization or informal organization that are also the first ones to be fired. Those that cause problems, cause issues, or otherwise have failed to integrate into the companies’ culture over time.

The truth of the matter is that bosses who are mean are the most likely to fail, and most likely to regardless of economic conditions lead to a mass exodus of everyone who makes the department successful.

“When (bosses) are mean their teams do not deliver great results, so they become more fearful,” says Sandy Gluckman, author of “Who’s in the Driver’s Seat: Using Spirit to Lead Successfully.” “The more fearful they get, the more their ego takes control and the meaner they get. The meaner they get, the more the team shuts down and the less they are able to perform.” Source: MSNBC

You can also tell newly minted bosses from old hand bosses, new bosses are more likely to cut the free coffee, perks, benefits, and the occasional gift of a starbucks card because while they have profited from the behavior in the past with other managers, they are looking at numbers, and are more inclined to make their superiors or supervisors happy. An older more seasoned boss will make every argument in the book to keep small perks like that, or go out and purchase starbucks cards for their crew just because they can. Seasoned happy concerned bosses will go out of their way to make sure that the stress is low, the work output is steady or increasing, and doing what they need to do to assuage the fears of their employees. Power crazed bosses will not, and everyone suffers up and down the organization.

It is tempting to try to get more out of a person, but actual productivity has stagnated or fallen in recent years, making it much harder to get more out of people when they are already on the edge. If someone is worried about their job, they are more likely to underperform than they are to try to reach stellar heights of productivity. A Machiavellian boss, an angry boss, or one who is manipulating fear is going to cause a major disruption of an already stressed department or organization.

Your angry boss is going to cost the company more in the longer run than your boss who cares and is trying everything to keep it together. In the longer run, the happy boss is more important to your organization than the unhappy angry boss. You can also guarantee (much like what happened after the technology industry started picking up in 2002) that the minute this crisis is over and history, that people will be shopping for new jobs just as soon as they can. A mass firing followed by a mass exodus a few years later will have serious repercussions for a company.

Add to that the proliferation of blogs, social media, social networks, your company and your bosses are being talked about. People check these kinds of things out, and there are companies that have a very hard time hiring people because of past managers, and past issues with management. Always things to look out for, and the safest thing to do right now is reel in your angry Machiavellian bosses now.

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About the Author: Dan Morrill has been in the information security field for 18 years, both civilian and military, and is currently working on his Doctor of Management. Dan shares his insights on the important security issues of today through his blog, Managing Intellectual Property & IT Security, and is an active participant in the ITtoolbox blogging community.

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