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Bad Bosses: Myth or Reality?

Bosses, supervisors, managers, head honchos, chief jefes, they all share one common trait: they’re in charge, like them or not; and, if you’re the boss, it’s almost guaranteed that not everyone will ‘like’ or ‘respect’ you. While many, if not most of us, might have had a one-time or even an occasional ‘run-in’ with those who are senior to us within the chain of command in the workplace, and vice versa, can we truly describe them as being ‘bad’?

What does it mean to be ‘bad’? Does the Devil truly wear Prada…or Gucci? Or, maybe high-heels and make-up, or shirt and tie? Then again, is it that we classify someone as ‘bad’ based on not sharing their personality traits, not finding a single merit in what they do, or, even thinking that we might be able to do a comparatively far better job than them, given the same workplace circumstances?

It seems that there is a wealth of information in cyberspace (i.e. The Internet) dedicated to the study of bosses and their diverse range of personality traits that can be classified as ‘toxic’, ‘counter-productive’, ‘harmful’ and of course, not good’. Which below traits do you think your boss might have? Or, if you are the boss, how many do you think might be applicable to you?

The Lifesaver- the boss who always seems to pick up the slack for those around them, leaving little to no room for individual accountability

The Window-Dresser- presents a good, sober image to the public and their seniors, but are themselves poor at managing those junior to them

The Wallflower- supports and encourages, but does little to raise employee profiles in the eyes of the boss’s own seniors, if at all

The Yes-Person- wants to please everyone, even if that means sacrificing accountability and candid discussion among team members

The Absolute- exclusively trusts official statistics and other technical data, as opposed to occasionally using his or her emotional intelligence to effectively manage their team

The Islander- prefers to do the lion’s share of the work on their own. They tend to unilaterally veto those team decisions that they don’t support

The Dictionary- has seen, heard and said it all; and, knows it all. They genuinely believe that everyone else should think and act like them

The Anti-Exemplar- you must always do what they say, but never as they do

The Cardboard Cut-out- possesses absolutely no human sympathy, far less empathy for anyone, about anything

The Propeller- uses their co-workers and juniors to solely elevate their own profile

The Blanket- uses one singular approach to address issues and present solutions

The Salt-Dispenser- like salt, they must have a constant [managing] presence-- in all aspects of work-life

The Monarch- they rule and also reign; and treat their juniors with the scantest of courtesy

Folks, bad bosses make for toxic workplaces, low productivity and high turnovers. Recognize the signs, don’t be a bad boss!

Keywords: LinkedIn Local Caribbean, workplace, teams, bosses, traits

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