The seven habits of a typical bad manager

I came across the article The seven habits of a typical bad manager in one of the LinkedIn groups I'm a member of.

I think we've all had the misfortune of dealing with bad managers at some point in our career's, but as with anything we experience, it's important to use it as a learning experience.

I can think of two distinct experiences with bad managers in my career. Both were 'new' managers - that is they hadn't managed more than a single person before in their career's.

The first was just bad because they were green and did most of the things in the article above. He just focused on the wrong things, despite his good intentions and care for his team. He focused on what time I started, ignoring the fact I'd been working until midnight the day before, and then admonishing me in front of the team. Like it matter's what time I started if I didn't have meetings! Where is the credit for the hours put in and work accomplished? And don't EVER deal with an issue in a team meeting that is more appropriate in a 1:1 conversation.

I learned a lot about managing upwards early in my career.

The second bad manager was similar to the first in that he was also 'green'... but he was different in that I don't think he gave a stuff about the team. My perception was that we were all 'tools' for him to propel his career. I don't have any problems saying that working for him was singularly THE most difficult year of my career & life. I learned a lot but this experience cost a lot - for both myself and other members of the team.

Thankfully, the first managers I reported to in my first job at JP Morgan were fantastic and nurtured me. Without this foundation, I'm not sure I would have learned as much from the bad experiences.

I've blogged about some great resources for people dealing with difficult managers. In Winning, Jack Welch takes readers through a discovery framework through which one can determine if it's them or indeed the manager whom the issue really lies. If it is with the manager, Jack suggests you can either 'put up' or 'shut up' or leave. In Who Moved My Cheese?, readers gain insight into dealing with change that you'd have to undertake by leaving an organisation.

More importantly, in First, Break all the Rules, aspiring or current managers learn how to change their style for building and nurturing their teams.

There are some other highly amusing Additional Seven Habits Articles from Dudley B. Dawson:
1. Seven Habits of Highly Effective Slackers
2. Seven Habits of Highly Annoying Emailers
3. Seven Habits of Disrespectful Work Poopers

Checkout these Demotivational Posters at

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posted by Lee Gale @ 1:50 AM,


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