What makes a ‘terrible’ boss?

Have you ever had a ‘terrible boss’?  According to a new survey of 2000 UK workers by Glassdoor, “two in three people will work for an annoying boss at some point in their career, and one in five will resign because of them.”

Key findings were:

  • Disrespectful behaviour – 43%
  • Negative attitude – 34%
  • Regular sexist comments – 7%
  • Bad body odour – 4%

And how did respondents deal with the situation?

  • Try ignoring it – 40%
  • Gossip behind back – 18%
  • Proactively try to get bad bosses fired – 5%

The business case for improving these figures is interesting from an HR perspective:

  • Skipped work – 40%
  • Sick leave – 20%
  • Resigned 21%
  • Transferred to a new team – 15% of women, 13% of men
  • Left suddenly without telling anyone – 2%

In a CIPD report published in January 53% of senior managers were ineffective people managers, though they scored highly on technical ability and financial management.

We can also become better managers if we are willing to be self-reflective and open to feedback.   As HR professionals we need to be ensuring that our organisations invest appropriately in people management capability by focussing on building a wide range of leadership skills to maximise the potential within the business.  A strong talent pipeline is also essential to be a successful, sustainable and high-performing organisation.