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Wednesday, October 24, 2001

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What I hate about my boss....

Lakshmi had just completed one year and got her confirmation and a fat bonus for her good performance in the Sales and Marketing division of an MNC. To all outward appearances she was envied by her juniors who aspired to rise and succeed like her. But one thing nobody noticed was her seething discontent that would propel her to seek employment in another firm thus depriving the company of an excellent employee.

The following is a first person account of the entry she made on March 15th the day she was supposed to be celebrating her confirmation andbonus.

1. I joined the company only with a conceptual knowledge of thebusiness and my area of specialisation. I looked up to my boss forguidance and to learn the business but my superior's insecurity andunwillingness to guide left me to my own devices.

How am I supposed to continue in a company where my learningcapabilities and scope are restricted according to the whims and fanciesof my superior?

2. Till today my boss has never said the words "good job" or "well done" or "keep it up", he feels the bonus I have been given is adequate compensation. Doesn't he know that an encouraging word will motivate me to excel and surpass expectations?

3. Whenever I am enthusiastic and talk to him about a new business opportunity, or a potential client his usual reaction is an insipid nod. How can I develop the organisation and get in new business when my boss's enthusiasm is at sub-zero levels?

4. My boss is not willing to discuss any new strategies or idea I might have. Any new idea that I put forth is shot down without the leastconsideration. His most often repeated refrain is, "I am the boss and Iknow how to do it" or something to that effect. How can the companyexpect me to perform under such a brusque boss who singularly lackspeople skills?

5. Silence seems to be his most preferred means of communication! Any kind of information that I know is out of my own initiative. Rightfrom the kind of projects our team is working on, to their progressreports, and thereon to HR practices. How can I discharge my duties tomy fullest potential if I am not able to communicate with my boss?

6. While he is slow to accept responsibility and quick to allotblame, I am targeted for mistakes that could have been avoided if he hadgiven me proper guidance. How can I work under such a critical boss?

7. Team meetings are dominated by his pompous lectures that adopt a very demotivating tone highlighting just the negatives and not theaccomplishments of the team. How can the company expect me to continueworking for them, when my superior doesn't inspire me to forge ahead butinstead makes me scared of getting stuck in a rut?

At first glance, the above would just sound like a long list ofcomplaints from a frustrated employee but a closer look would revealthat there is genuine problem brewing within the team which willultimately affect the company as a whole.

As a manager you could take a peek through the eyes of the people reporting to you what do you think you will see? Isn't it time toformulate a systematic fool proof reverse assessment system wheredespite his superiority, the boss is put in the dock and if found`guilty' should be told to shape up or ship out?


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