Is Your Boss a Jerk?
We have all worked for them: Bad bosses who couldn't lead a pack of flies through a sweat farm. You've worked for them; so have I. It is rare, especially these days, to find a boss who actually "gets it" when it comes to his or her employees. We want to give our bosses the respect they have earned, but maybe they have forgotten respect is a two-way street. We want to believe in their programs and policies, but some are may be so ludicrous that we just cannot. Steve Strauss, writing for BNET, offered these seven clues to help you decide if you work for a jerk.
1. Your boss might be a jerk if he does not know the difference between managing and micromanaging. If your boss is not only good at telling you what to do, but how to do it, when to do it, why to do it, and ends up doing it himself, he may be micromanaging you. Spending more time on the intimate details of the project rather than assigning work and expecting you to produce results using your talent means he is micromanaging you, and is a jerk.
2. Your boss might be a jerk if she engages in petty office politics. If your boss likes to see you fight, likes to lie so that employees will argue with each other just for her own amusement, then your boss may be a jerk. She is probably wasting the time she should be using running your department effectively, and is a jerk.
3. Your boss might be a jerk if he hides the ball. Everyone likes working for the guy who shoots straight and tells it like it is, even if it is sometimes painful. At least we know where we stand. If he never really gets to his point, never really explains the standards, and never really assigns anything to you, for the department, for your personal and professional growth, if he never counsels you in a meaningful way, he is a jerk.
4. Your boss might be a jerk if she bullies you. If your boss does things just because she can, if she always ties performance in to firing or keeping your job, if she seems to make it a point to belittle you in front of your peers, she is a jerk.
5. Your boss might be a jerk if he fails to give credit where credit is due. Few things are worse than working your tail off on a project just so the boss can take all the credit at the next department head meeting. If your boss has yet to learn the words "thank you" or "good job" as a part of his daily routine, if he really doesn't do much but the company appears too stupid to replace him, if he never takes you out in public and gloats on what a great employee you are, he is a jerk.
6. Your boss might be a jerk if she fails to have any consideration for anyone other than herself. If she will not budge on the schedule, gets upset when you are genuinely too sick to work, or gives you extra work for any reason that is not distributed fairly throughout your department, she is a jerk.
7. Your boss might be a jerk if he is just plain creepy. Is he too "touchy-feely" for you? Does he seem way too interested in your personal life? Does he demand to be friends on Facebook? Maybe he tells off-color jokes you really do not appreciate. Perhaps he is just plain inappropriate and embarrassing. If so, he is a jerk.
In my opinion, leadership is a dying art. It isn't easy to lead, and certainly not everyone can do it, including those in the position. Some got it by hard work, skill, and talent. Others by tenure (they outlasted everyone else). A few got it by being the "company" man or woman. Still others got it for reasons no one can explain. These people have no position in our field, or any other for that matter. Still, there is a good chance you work for one, or have in the past. If we are going to clean up the respiratory field, if we are going to present ourselves as a valid profession, if we are going to care for our patients the way we would want to be cared for, these "jerks" have to go.