A Gallup study found that around half of employees leave their jobs because of a bad boss. “Having a bad manager is bad for employees in two ways: First employees feel horrible during work, and then the misery also follows them home, elevating their stress and adversely affecting their overall well-being,” said Gallup’s experts.
Also, as per career site Glassdoor.com, one in five employees have experienced their careers hurt by a boss. As per experts, this is because bad bosses lead to bad performance and the impact of having a bad manager can actually drive down employee performance for up to five years.
"An employee with a bad manager performs at a level that is 20% lower compared to an employee with a good manager,” says Brian Kropp, managing director at CEB.
So, which bosses are the most horrible ones that hurt employee morale the most? HR pros and academics who study workforce management point these five that stand out.
1. The Micromanager
Do you get that creepy feeling someone is looking at you, and when you look up, it’s almost always your boss? Either he’s got some serious message for you or he’s a micromanager who has an innate need to control every aspect of your work. This is one of the most undesirable types of boss that most employees do not want to deal with. When being managed by a boss like this, it’s impossible to make move without his approval. You may be expected re-work most of the times as the micromanager boss would always have his inputs handy. The driving factor behind many micromanaging bosses is a desire for control, so much so that they may insist on being corresponded in the minutest of work done. The experts say it’s best not to fight your micromanaging boss as it worsens matters. Do not rebel against this kind of a boss and instead change how you respond to his or her requests. Be tactful to not complain or ignore your boss’s directions.
2. The Crooked Politician
Politically skilled leaders are perceived to be more ethical than politically unskilled leaders,” writes Paul Harvey, a management professor at the University of New Hampshire, in a research paper published in this month’s issue of the Journal of Leadership & Organizational Studies. This type of boss are visionaries and skilled enough to know the steps they need to take to be successful. They have social finesse and the people who work for them are fooled by their charisma into thinking that they must be good people.
This type of boss often sets the tone for what is considered acceptable but employees aren’t always as skilled in pulling off deviant behaviors so sometimes they’re the ones who get caught and face the penalties. Other effects of working under a crooked politician boss for employees include becoming disillusioned and losing their passion for their work after the realization that their bosses cheated their way to their positions.
3. The Workaholic
As the recent headlines of bank interns dropping dead after working long hours created a stir, it shouldn’t be a surprise that working under a supervisor who’s completely disregards work-life balance is miserable. BambooHR, HR software company, reveals that 39% of employees work more than 40 hours a week, and that we’re working an average of 11 hours a week more than we did back in the 1970s. A workaholic boss is toxic for employees as he expects everyone around him to display similar enthusiasm for work and put in same work hours, thus setting the work culture.
A study in the Journal of Occupational and Environmental Medicine found that people who work for demanding jobs with 60-plus hour workweeks are a whopping 15 times more likely to show signs of depression up to three years later. So, working under a workaholic boss eventually messes up the work life balance of an employee.
4. The Ghost
The ghost boss is the one who is rarely found and hardly interacts with his team members. He comes to work, closes his office door, and then emerges only after the work day is over. He won’t be available to give you any directions, guidance, help et al during your project. The only time employee see a ghost boss is when a crisis arises or some escalations happen. This is the type of manager who will remain silent till the last hour giving you the impression that everything is alright. However, one fine you are to let go from the company because of poor performance as your boss failed to give any feedback for work. If all these traits describe your boss, you need to ensure that proper communication and look for ways to stay in contact. It will be vital for you to remain proactive about your performance at every step and compelling him to do the same. You can do this by scheduling regular status meetings and feedback sessions.
5. The Bully
Bully bosses have adequate social skills to figure out who and how they need to coax people to get what they want. Bully bosses are the ones who crave power and have no compunctions about going to any extent such as behaving aggressively to achieve their desires. In their drive to the top, they don’t care who they run over and feel no guilt about causing harm to other. This is one of the worst kind of boss people can come across as he doesn’t have any moral obligations. The consequences of abusive supervision may not be as physically harmful like other types of dysfunctional behavior, such as workplace violence or aggression, however, the actions tend to leave longer-lasting wounds when abusive supervision continues for a long time.