May 31, 2011 Leave a comment
Being a bad manager may be something that you are not consciously aware of. And if you are aware of it to some degree, you are probably not willing to admit it to anyone, least of all yourself. That is because it is human nature to not want to believe you may be the problem. This is probably because of ego, denial, compartmentalization, self-delusion, lack of perspective, and/or something similar.
However, it is a common enough phenomenon that is not just limited to bosses, but can apply to people at all levels: senior executives, managers, employees too. And it would be easy to just label these people dysfunctional but I actually think we all suffer from this sort of myopia to some extent and from time to time.
So, even if you are convinced that you are the greatest manager and your ability to be introspective is limitless, you would be smart to ask yourself you may be a bad manager…
- If your employees stop performing and seem miserable. Bad management trickles down and affects the entire organization and poor performance can usually be traced back to a management problem. And no matter how self-absorbed you are, you know if your employees are miserable. Do they stop talking and look guilty when you walk by? Do they invite everyone else but you for drinks after work? Bad signs.
- If you are starting to feel the pressure. When a good senior manager thinks there may be a problem with a subordinate manager, they may inevitably turn up the heat and see what happens. So if you notice your boss turning up the pressure, it may be a sign that something is up.
- If other managers are distancing themselves from you. As managers we can accept when our employees occasionally talk behind our back and for our enemies to loathe us, but when work friends and co-workers start to back away, that is not a good sign.
- If you begin to loose your cool. You may be in conscious denial about being a bad boss, but on a subconscious level, you are probably aware of it. And that takes a toll on you, usually in terms of increased stress and anxiety that you start to take out on others.
- If your decision-making becomes poor. A visible sign of poor management is poor decision-making. After all, decisions are actions, actions generate results, and results are highly visible. You need to pay attention.
As for all you employees who would rather turn a blind eye than take a cold hard look at yourself, the above may apply to you as well. Now, I am not saying that one or two of these things automatically makes you a lousy manager. Just be aware. Do you agree or disagree?