Not all bosses are created equal. Anyone who has ever had a bad boss, or a really bad boss, knows this all too well.
We have discovered that good bosses listen well, empower their people, mentor, teach, coach, inspire innovation and creativity, and have fun.
They also add positivity to the restaurant in which they work, boosting ambiance and sales, and making it an enjoyable for both employees and diners.
But what makes for a bad boss—and are you one of them?
Here they are, five bad bosses:
This is a boss that doesn’t give any space for employees to speak or learn through conversation. This boss is often thought of as a bigmouth, braggart, gossiper, and/or lecturer. He talks and talks and never listens.
These bosses interrupt others and are overly self-involved with their thoughts and expressions. Talkers only listen to themselves and disregard anything offered by their subordinates. Resenting their employees’ input, they stifle creativity and productivity while cultivating widespread discontent amongst their team.
The Talker is a bad boss because he misses out on opportunities both for his own development and for that of his employees.
This boss restrains and suppresses her employees from maximizing their true potential. This boss is offensively dominating and oppressive. She restricts and subdues her employees across the board.
Disenfranchisers take their employees’ inspirations and aspirations, and squash them into subordination. They offer no reasoning other than their job position. Their employees are stifled, bored, and miserable.
The Disenfranchiser is a bad boss because she deprives her employees of basic needs and future aspirations, forcing them into a hole of isolation.
The Disconnector closes off and renounces his employees while destroying their confidence. This boss isolates and obstructs his employees’ activities. He singles out employees and since he’s acutely aware of his situation, his isolation irks him to the core.
Disconnectors obstruct communication and reject suggestions from employees. They sit in their office, apart from their team, only coming out to intentionally break up projects and partnerships.
The Disconnector is a bad boss because he removes essential communication channels and is demeaning towards his employees.
The Square Dude (or Dudette)
The square boss is behind the times, straight-laced, and struggles to lead and inspire. This boss, perhaps well intentioned and perhaps not, struggles to keep up with contemporary culture, whether it is “cool” or not.
Instead of quelling misunderstandings, she contributes to strife and friction. Square Dudes (or Dudettes) stick to old ways out of ignorance or contempt for new ways. They force these old ways upon their employees and scoff when they are met with resistance.
The Square Dude (or Dudette) is a bad boss because she is out of touch with the times, stagnating in old ways and unnecessarily forcing these ways upon her employees.
This boss squashes or saps the strength and motivation out of his employees. He is perhaps the ultimate bad boss—not just rejecting employees’ needs and dreams, but utterly crushing them as well. All requests for support and guidance are met with sarcasm and blatant disrespect.
Destroyers rival their naval and starship counterparts on human-to-human terms, wrought with intensely directed malice towards others. These actions can be apparent and also hidden at times, adding to their effective destruction.
The Destroyer is just simply a bad boss by nature.
These five bosses, as gnarly as they’re described, are not necessarily to be feared or despised. Generally, most people are good and well intentioned, never hoping to fit the category of a bad boss.
Perhaps these descriptions will help you reflect upon moments when you slip up as a boss, and allow you to explore maximizing your potential. Perhaps you may now see deeper into the mishaps of others and give credit when credit is due.
In any case, we support the values of an honest, meaningful, and respectful work environment and hope you do too.
By: Jim and Matt Finkelstein
Jim Finkelstein is the president and CEO of FutureSense, Inc. and author of FUSE: Making Sense of the New Cogenerational Workplace, published by Green Leaf Book Group Press in October 2011. Matt Finkelstein, Jim’s son, is a part-time consultant at FutureSense and Farm Manager for the Four ElementsFarm, Atascadero, California.