Three Habits of Bad Bosses: Are You Guilty?

Jul 5, 2011
5 Min Read

Okay, we’ve talked until we’re blue in the face about how and what you need to do to be a good leader. But what about the bosses that are unaware that their management style is counterproductive? For the sake of employees, companies and their careers, we can't just let them carry on in blissful ignorance, so we've staged an intervention. If you're a manager and one of the following three descriptions sound like something you do on a regular basis, then you may need to seek help. And don't worry, we've got tons of leadership advice right here on the QuickBase Blog to get you on the right track.

1. You're a micromanager -- You make sure to check everything. You certainly wouldn't want a task to be done the wrong way. And, of course, you’ll need to redo part of it or at the very least tweak it because it certainly won’t be done the way it should have been. Definitely point out to your staff how the result is so much better with your additions and input. Don’t forget that you must second guess every single thing your staff does. As a matter of fact, it would probably be best if you hover over them every fifteen minutes and make sure you join them at every meeting they attend so things get done the right way.

Sound like you? Here's how to avoid the urge to micromanage.

2. You don’t communicate too much -- No one on your team really needs to know anything until the time is right. So hold everything back until the last minute to ensure nothing moves forward without your wise counsel. Keeping everyone in the dark about what’s happening in the rest of the company and about who is doing what on the team. That way they’ll need you more (of course!) to achieve their goals.

Like to keep things on the down-low? Here's how to keep communication channels open.

3. You have meetings for the fun of it -- You call a meetings several times a week and make it a point to show up late so everyone is in the room by the time you get there. You don’t bother with an agenda or meeting purpose -- those things are way too time consuming -- just shoot from the hip and take as long as you need. You make sure you do most of the talking too.

Have a hunch your staff is not so enthusiastic about attending your meetings? Here are some pointers on how to lead a productive and engaging meeting.

If you practice one or more of these habits, you should ask the folks reporting to you how you're doing as a manager. Asking them for feedback can help you understand where you need to improve as a leader beyond the three items on this list. It also gives them a chance to vent openly, rather than internalize frustrations or talk behind your back. Before you solicit feedback, make sure you're mentally prepared to receive constructive criticism. For more advice on being a self-aware leader and using feedback, see our posts, "Becoming Aware of Your Leadership Style" and "How to Get Thick Skin & Deal With Criticism."

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