Bad Bosses (Part 2)

If you read my last post, Bad Bosses (Part 1), you know that I am not a fan of working for p

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people who are just that, Bad Bosses! There are a number of factors that can make someone a bad boss, but one of the biggest components in my book is respect.  I will never find myself employed by someone who does not respect me and I cannot respect.  An article by Victor Lipman on Forbes states “Respect, not friendship, is what a manager needs.”

With that said, I would encourage you to find someone who respects you and you can respect, being best friends does not make anyone a great manager.  For those of us who find themselves in management roles, I wanted share a few things we can do to help build trust and respect with our teams.  Many people dedicate their lives to studying leadership and management so this is not even close to an exhaustive list, but it is a few of the tips I have learned over the years from working with great people and a few, not so great.

Trust your employees

No one likes to work for someone who is a micromanager, so back off.  Allow your employees the opportunity to work independent of your supervision and prove autonomy to everyone.  Losing your grip builds trust with your team and has also been linked to employee engagement.  We should allow our team to fail as well, not intervening regularly can teach employees lessons the hard way, but make them better in the long run.  So stop watching so much, it doesn’t help.

Acknowledge Achievements

Everyone has a nature in them to want to succeed.  Provide the opportunity for each of your team to challenge themselves and be a part of something bigger than their individual tasks.  You may be surprised how competent people are, and they should be rewarded.  Rarely do I believe that rewards should be in the form of compensation – in fact, I believe that actually will hinder performance.  If you don’t know the detrimental power of financial incentives, check out this video by Dan Pink.  Rewards should be small “good job” comments, or maybe addressing their success to the group.  Everyone wants to succeed and be showcased a little bit, a “great job today” comment goes a long way.

Take Risks and Admit When You Are Wrong

I don’t know if I can stress this one enough, but showing you team you are willing to make the hard decision and stand by it can make all the different.  Additionally, owning your mistakes displays a humanness to everyone and is humbling to many.  Do not fall into the trap of egocentric behavior – admit you should not have made that call.  The power of this also shows your team that it is OK to make mistakes, failure is the best teacher.  So make the hard call, after all you are the boss, but be ready to own it.

Again, these are just a few things that I have experienced over the last several years and are very important to me in building respect with your team.  I attached a few links at the bottom of this post with resources about building respect with your teams.  If you are struggling with a respect issue, leave me a comment below or connect with me on Twitter @BPetring and we can talk about it more.  Remember, identify bad bosses, don’t work for them, and don’t ever allow yourself to become one.

Additional Resources:



Larry Jackson (LinkedIn)


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