5 Reasons the Boss MAKES his Employees Hate Him

Bad bossAs a character in a Mel brooks' movie once said, “It’s good to be the king” but some managers take this attitude a little too far and disenchant their employees. The result is lowered morale, a suffering workforce and decreased performance. Here are some of the more egregious ways that managers and business owners cause their employees to hate them as a person, not just as the boss:

Being Grossly Incompetent

Whether you started the company or have been promoted into your position, you – as a manager – are expected by your subordinates to fully understand your job as well as theirs and to provide effective leadership. This means providing accurate and timely information on the status of a project, managing the choke points where individuals are not meeting their goals and following up on assigned tasks so that the proper credit is given for a job well-done. 

Failing in any of these tasks makes you look weak and ineffective. Still worse is not accepting responsibility for poor information or management. Not only will your subordinates suffer as a team but your reputation as an honorable person will be severely damaged.

Fomenting Disrespect

It is fairly easy to recognize disrespect in others and to deal with it appropriately. It is far harder to see it in oneself and remove it. If you find yourself interrupting employees when they are speaking, calling ad hoc meetings in the middle of the workday, phoning them at home at odd hours and generally treating them as if they should always be at your beck and call, you are guilty of disrespecting your employees.

Even the easiest going people will chafe at these types of behaviors and ultimately resent the cause. In the end, you will find yourself the butt of jokes and eventually will be met with the same derision that you heap upon people.

Over-managing the Good Employees

While the term “management” is in your job description, you should understand that not all employees are created equal. There are ones that, like a guided missile, can be trusted to home in on their target without undue supervision. Watching their every move, however, engenders a feeling of mistrust that will eventually be projected onto you and your own reputation.

In addition, once you give superior employees their assignments, you are free to oversee the less competent or untested members of your team. Even so, you must allow these employees to spread their so-called wings or you will never gain their trust as a manager.

Ignoring Their Outside Life

A wise man once commented that a successful life was a tripod that consisted equally of work, love and play. Too many managers these days overemphasize the first factor to the detriment of the other two. Often, this problem manifests itself in such seemingly minor things such as a manager scheduling meetings on off days or after regular business hours because of a crisis. Oversights like this quickly breed resentment among employees – even the hard-working ones – and will rapidly diminish enthusiasm for the job as well as overall productivity. 

It is a simple fact of business life that the newest generations of employees are demanding flexibility and time off to pursue interests other than work. You ignore this fact at the peril of your company's success as the best employees will move on to more accommodating companies and leave you with the less desirable ones.

Taking Undue Credit / Throwing Them under the Bus

These two reasons could easily be separate but they both involve not laying credit or fault where it is rightfully due. Just as every success does not belong to a manager by himself, failures are not just the result of the subordinate team not producing. In fact, throwing a subordinate under the proverbial “bus” is the fastest way to earn the distrust and dislike of your employees.

Knowing when to share the credit and when to take blame is essential for any manager if he hopes to build a successful team that will produce superior results. Similarly, a good manager will cover for the mistakes of his subordinates if he has played a part in creating them. Whether you want to recognize it or not, your subordinates and your superiors will recognize your attempts to take excess credit or to shirk the blame.

A Final Thought

While the current job environment still has a ways to go before it is truly an “employee's market,” conditions are tightening. This single fact means that employees – especially the best – will not have to endure managers who exhibit the above types of behaviors. The best advice is to take a long, hard look in the mirror and examine your own behaviors as much as you do those of your subordinates.