Sadistic Bosses

Sadistic Bosses

Hello, Cruella. Telling Sadistic Bosses what they want to hear, like
“…ouch,” will only get them charged up to lay on more punishment—
sometimes overt and sometimes subtle. Take for example the practical
joker Sadistic Bosses that put up signs reading,
opinion, I’ll give it to you.” Ha-ha. What these morons apparently
don’t realize is people see through the pseudo-humor for what it is—
a reminder of who has the power.

If it’s so funny, why isn’t anyone laughing except the boss? There’s
always the suggestion box with no bottom placed strategically over a
wastebasket. Do you hear anyone laughing? I’ll never understand why
people think making light of power disparity in the workplace is supposed
to make it okay.

the_boss_takes_a_vacation_sjpg1183Like the mouse that has been caught, but not killed, the Sadistic
Boss won’t let you get away. She will keep you alive to torture you. If
you try to transfer out of her department, she will show up at your
door holding your transfer request with REJECTED written
across it in big red letters. You’ll pinch yourself to wake from the
nightmare only to find that you’re just pinching yourself and she is
still standing there—with an evil smile. If you try to go around her or
above her head, she will go to the Pope if necessary to get your transfer
request rejected.

Working for a Sadistic Boss is the closest thing to hell I can think
of. Forget about working your way out of the problem. The harder
you work, the more she’ll pile on you. Forget about insubordinating
your way out of the problem. The more you goof off, the more justification
you give her to beat you. Forget about bleeding your way out of
the problem. Injuring yourself is a waste of time, not to mention painful.
Pain is like catnip for a sadist.

Working yourself to near death, goofing off, or self-inflicting
wounds only play into the Sadistic Boss’s game. But it’s not hopeless.
Try pretending you’re a masochist. If your performance is convincing
and the sadist thinks you’re enjoying the pain, you’ll be out in a flash.
Only the pain and suffering of others will charge a sadist’s batteries.
Take a cue from Brer Rabbit. He put the fox in a paradoxical bind
when he pleaded for the solution he wanted as if it were punishment
by saying, “Please don’t throw me in the brier patch.” Of course, the
brier patch is where Brer wanted to be. In laymen’s terms, a paradoxical
bind simply means damned if you do and damned if you don’t. It
worked for Brer Rabbit and you just might be hippity hopping to
freedom before you know it.

There are ways to deal with Sadistic Bosses to improve your working
environment. As always, knowing what you’re up against helps.

The maxim, “Keep your friends close and your enemies closer,” doesn’t
apply here. You need to keep as much distance as possible without
provoking the sadist to jerk your choke collar.

■ Develop ways to assure your Sadistic Boss that her
workload is indeed oppressive, even if it’s not. In real
terms, if she thinks you’re skating through anything, she’ll
associate that with failure to sufficiently burden you. It
sounds silly, but there are many bosses who truly believe
any happiness or frivolity around the office can only mean
one thing: jailbreak. Jail keepers deal with jailbreaks in
one way: lockdown.

■ When a Sadistic Boss calls, come. Disobeying a Sadistic
Boss, or even delaying your responses, gives her an excuse
to lash out. She has enough motivation to cause pain
without you adding more. Understand that, to a sadist,
pain is power. Your pain—her power. Fighting her power
plays into her game. Always be ready to respond quickly,
although not merrily, to a Sadistic Boss. You will get
through the day more painlessly.

■ Assure her that pain is a good motivator. Many employees
think it’s a mission from God to convince the Sadistic
Boss that her methods are unsound. Not only will you
lose that argument every time, you have just given her a
reason to prove all over again how powerful she is. Smart
workers will hand in their work with an acknowledgement
that the pressure she exerted accelerated the process.
Refer in your e-mails and other correspondences to the
fact that workloads are weighty, but you’re continuing
your struggle.

■ Don’t organize activities in a Sadistic Boss’s department.
Keep them underground and ad hoc. Organizing a sports
activity or a party is like serving her a punishment opportunity
on a silver platter. This means, don’t dress up
in your softball uniform before leaving the office. If your
Sadistic Boss sees you’re on your way out to have fun,
you’ll wind up working late and missing the game.

■ Act busy. Idleness invites punishment in the form of exaggerated
workloads. I’m not saying fake working. To
create a better working environment for yourself, you
want to work on important and personally rewarding activities.
In a sadistic environment, just make your work
appear excessively burdensome. If you’ve ever tried to
kick back and lighten things up around a Sadistic Boss, I
don’t need to remind you what happens.

■ Watch her eyes. Pain begets pain. The Sadistic Boss is
probably the victim of pain imposed by another sadist,
either in her family or elsewhere. This is not a happy
person thumping on you for no reason. Whatever pain
she dishes out, she has felt it before from someone more
powerful. For whatever reason, pain has become a way
of life. Sometimes, making eye contact will open an unspoken
corridor between you and she’ll back off a little.
If making eye contact only makes her rage out at you,

You are best served in a Sadistic Boss’s department to appear
busy and focused without good cheer, not that a serious attitude will
be hard to come by. This doesn’t mean you can’t be upbeat and positive
when you’re outside of the sadist’s orbit. Being positive and upbeat
will enhance the possibility that someone might recruit you away
from your Sadistic Boss.

The fact that your boss is a sadist is probably not news to anyone,
inside or outside of your department. People up the food chain know
more than you might think, despite the fact they don’t acknowledge it
when you’re around. If you are sour and dour everywhere with everyone,
they won’t know if the problem is you or your boss.

Never talk your Sadistic Boss down in front of her superiors. If
others see you being positive when away from your boss, they’ll feel
sorry for your situation and might even admire your tenacity for keeping
a stiff upper lip in the face of such negativity. With a Sadistic
Boss, play it smart, but play it nonetheless.

HOW TO WORK FOR AN IDIOT SURVIVE & THRIVE… WITHOUT KILLING YOUR Boss Cap II: Chapter 2: Will the Real Idiot Please Stand Up? (By John Hoover) Part8

Sadistic Bosses


Masochistic Bosses

Masochistic Bosses

Saying what a Masochistic Boss wants to hear,—”You’re a piece of slime…”—is not exactly appropriate and could come back to haunt you if overheard. Unfortunately, complimenting masochists only annoys them, and they usually respond by doing something particularly despicable to set the record straight.

Masochistic Bosses
Masochistic Bosses

As the name implies, masochists have developed a belief that they should be punished…must be punished. Who knows why? The important thing is that they will suck everyone within their sphere of influence into their sick behavior. Their need to be punished is so intense that they will punish themselves if nobody else will. In extreme cases,
nobody else can do it well enough to be trusted.

Masochistic Bosses attract codependents like flies to a Sunday picnic. The codependents try like crazy to fill up the black hole in the masochist’s soul, which is impossible. Yet, the Herculean effort continues day-in and day-out. The codependents shovel affirmations down the masochist’s throat for all they’re worth and the masochist vomits them all back up. Masochistic Bosses are not idiots in the classical sense. But they’re about as uplifting as a boat anchor.

Departments run by Masochistic Bosses are easy to spot. For starters, nothing ever gets done except for the occasional 911 call. Getting something accomplished might mean a reduction in pain and misery, so that’s out. Masochistic Bosses make sure their departments fail so upper management will deal out punishment.

The best way to deal with a Masochistic Boss is to get out. There is no way these people will ever feel good about themselves. Neither will they ever allow you to accomplish anything that might make them look or feel good. When you accomplish something that makes you look or feel good, your Masochistic Boss is likely to say, “Oh, swell. Good for yo-o-o-ou. I suppose you’re going to get promoted now and knock me off the management ladder. Well, go ahead. Do what makes you happy.” It makes you want to take your accomplishment, wad it up, and throw it in the trash. Except that your Masochistic Boss will probably have already put the trashcan over his head and will be beating it against a wall.

Once again, the secret to surviving and thriving in a Masochistic Boss’s department begins with attitude, followed by language and behavior. You must learn to be positive without smiling. In fact, being positive in a masochist’s world means getting the focus off his pain as often as possible.

  • Frame your comments in the context of avoiding problems. If you have a proposal you want to advance, say, “This will assure we’re in compliance with the organization’s parameters without drawing any undue attention our way.” Your Masochistic Boss will hear in your comment an absence of reward and appreciation, which to him is the next best thing to actual punishment.
  • Point out possible down-side outcomes. Saying, “This could result in some negative consequences that we’ll have to deal with,” can be a perfectly honest and truthful statement.
  • Your Masochistic Boss will hear the possible negatives, while your fellow team members will simply take it as a heads up.
  • Don’t engage your Masochistic Boss’s negative conversation.
  • Listen respectfully, but don’t pick up the negativity.
  • You don’t want any more negative energy around you than necessary. He wants to wallow in it. You can strike a compromise of sorts by being attentive when it’s appropriate and steering clear whenever you can.
  • Acknowledge what can happen. Your Masochistic Boss will tell you repeatedly what bad things are likely to happen in any given scenario or initiative. Note for future reference what he is most afraid of, to hear him tell it, and point out up front the possibility that his specific fears could be realized. Then offer that it might turn out another way by the luck of the draw.
  • Include but don’t invite. Copy your Masochistic Boss on all e-mails and announcements of activities that you cook up with your coworkers, but don’t specifically invite him.
  • Issue a blanket invitation. The last thing you want to do is act as if you’re cheering him up. Don’t specifically exclude him either.
  • Give him a virtual hug. Physical contact is rarely appropriate in office settings, but a well-timed nod of the head, sigh, or shrug of the shoulders can have a similar effect.
  • A virtual hug for your Masochistic Boss is a nonverbal way to say, “I know you’re under an immense amount of pressure that you don’t deserve and I’m powerless to help you.”
Masochistic Bosses
Masochistic Bosses

I rarely advise quitting, but, as W.C. Fields said, “If at first you don’t succeed, try again. Then give up. There’s no use being a damn fool about it.” Or words to that effect. The best way to deal with a Masochistic Boss is to get out. There is no way these people will ever
feel good about themselves. Neither will they ever allow you to accomplish
anything that might make them look or feel good. My advice: Get out before you injure yourself on a booby trap he has set around the office for himself. Get out that is, unless you’re a sadist. Then you can play with the masochist the way a cat plays with a defenseless mouse.


HOW TO WORK FOR AN IDIOT SURVIVE & THRIVE… WITHOUT KILLING YOUR Boss Cap II: Chapter 2: Will the Real Idiot Please Stand Up? (By John Hoover) Part 7

Machiavellian Bosses

Machiavellian Bosses


Machiavellian Bosses
Machiavellian Bosses

Machiavellian Bosses don’t think they’re God. They are extremely intelligent and know better. But they will end you for soiling the carpet in their offices. Machiavellian Bosses are ticked off they can’t bump God out of His job and don’t mind taking out their frustration
on the rest of us.

Machiavellian Bosses view the universe as an enormous pyramid. There is one spot at the top and it belongs to them, by divine right. Machiavellian Bosses have committed every ounce of their being to achieving the top spot. They don’t care what or whom they must climb over to get there. They simply won’t be denied.

If you are run over, run through, or otherwise become a casualty of the Machiavellian’s race to the top, don’t take it personally. It’s not about you. It was never about you. And it will never be about you, except for the moment you are actually in her way. That moment is
yours and will live over and over again in your nightmares.

The only time Machiavellian Bosses will ever be content or benevolent is when they are in the top spot. Even then, it’s a coin toss. They might have read somewhere that there is a higher spot to acquire. As long as there is more power to be had, Machiavellian Bosses
will not rest. Moreover, they will leave no maneuver or weapon of mass destruction unused in their quest for the top.

Machiavellian Bosses are too intelligent and shrewd to be considered Idiot Bosses. They are not clueless, except for things that don’t matter to them—like the health and well-being of other people or the goals and objectives of the organization. They are highly focused, highly driven, and highly efficient. Translated, that means lean, mean, killing machines. They remove obstacles from their path by whatever means are necessary and readily available. Don’t cross the street in front of a speeding Machiavellian, even if you have the light.

If you find yourself working for a Machiavellian, there are several ways to protect yourself. You can say things like, “You know, boss, the carpet in the CEO’s office matches your eyes.” If the CEO of your company drives a Lexus 430 LS you can say, “You seem like a
Lexus 430 LS kinda person to me, boss.” You can skip the symbolism and appeal to his insatiable appetite for power with, “This organization would run like clockwork if you were in charge.” Telling God and Machiavellian Bosses what they want to hear is always your best bet.

Realizing the Machiavellians perceive the universe as a ‘pyramid, you must take care in all you do to avoid competition. More than avoiding competition, which she will assume, you need to frame your language and behavior in ways that indicate you understand and accept her right to the top spot. Like the God Boss, the Machiavellian
is dead serious about her self-perception and has little or no genuine regard for you. On the up side, presenting the proper attitude and actions to your Machiavellian Boss will make your working environment as pleasant as possible and, on a more positive side, possibly keep you from getting run over.

  • Use the words “for you” often. To merely say, “I’ll take care of it,” can actually be interpreted by a Machiavellian as a threat to go over her head. You might have no such intention. But if a Machiavellian Boss suspects that you’re going over her head, she’ll have yours served up on a platter. To a Machiavellian, saying, “I’ll take care of it for you,” sounds far less threatening, almost as if you’re doing it in her name.
  • Use “for you” in the past tense. In describing anything you did, include the words, “for you.” This makes the Machiavellian think that you are acting on her behalf, even when you’re out of her sight, and her comfort level around you will improve.
  • Alert her to intelligence. When you find something out, tell her. Send an e-mail or mention it in passing. Being in constant competition with everyone, Machiavellians appreciate information that might be useful to them. The information might not mean much to you, but you’re not engaged in her struggle for supremacy.
  • Copy her first. Make sure your Machiavellian Boss is in the loop on everything. Even if it seems like a trivial piece of information to you, let the Machiavellian tell you if she doesn’t want to hear it. If she senses that you are withholding information, she’ll conclude you are competing with her and things will get unpleasant. This is about detoxing your environment, remember?
  • Accept her invitations. It might disrupt your schedule, but turning down a Machiavellian’s invitation to lunch or an event can be interpreted as resistance or a possible power move on your part. Be reasonable in the context of your own life, but understand that disinterest on your part can be a threat to a Machiavellian.
  • Frame your contributions in terms of whom she can impress.

“That oughta make Mr. Big a happy camper,” is much better than saying, “I hope Mr. Big likes what I did.” When complimenting a Machiavellian, be aware of the people higher on her food chain and construct your comments in terms of how they will be impressed and
appreciative of what she did, even if you did it.
As with all of these tactics, you must use your best judgment and balance your needs with the sacrifice you’re willing to make. Just be aware of how your attitudes and behaviors appear through your boss’s eyes. Although you and your boss might march to different drummers, the boss sets the rhythm around the office. Learning a new cadence will serve you better than forming your own drum line. You’ll probably just frustrate yourself and your boss, who in turn will drum you out.

Machiavellian Bosses

HOW TO WORK FOR AN IDIOT SURVIVE & THRIVE… WITHOUT KILLING YOUR Boss Cap II: Chapter 2: Will the Real Idiot Please Stand Up? (By John Hoover) Part 6


God Bosses

God Bosses


There are people who think they’re God. No one is sure how or why some people come upon self-deification. It could be an extreme case of choosing a role model. There is nothing wrong with emulating God-like qualities, but to imagine you’re the big guy Himself—to think you are the voice from the burning bush—now you’re scaring me.

God Bosses
God Bosses

A God Boss is not an Idiot Boss in the classical sense. Somehow, thinking you’re God transcends cluelessness. It’s like believing you’re Napoleon Bonaparte and then some. For their own safety and the safety of the population at large, God Bosses should be locked up, with the key dropped in the deepest river.

Fortunately, God Bosses appear most often in church settings or in missionary organizations where the real God is considered boss to begin with, so the whole thing winds up as a power struggle with youknow-who coming up short. The misguided mortal in such cases merely tries to usurp the authority. God probably doesn’t consider God Bosses a threat as much as an annoyance. You should take a deep breath and
do the same, unless you work for one.

If you have a God Boss, I hope and pray that he is a loving and gracious lord. Fire and brimstone in the wrong hands can ruin your day. Hopefully, the lunatic doesn’t expect you to put on sackcloth and sandals. Then again, the more powerful the God Boss, the more important it is to find a way to coexist.

If you find it is expedient to appease a God Boss, pray for pardon from your real Higher Authority and then play church. Upon seeing your God Boss for the first time each morning, bow slightly. When he acts down or depressed, take up a collection around the
office and deliver tithes and offerings unto him. If your God Boss indicates you have disappointed him, don’t argue. Beg forgiveness. Use the Old Testament as a guidebook to making him happy. Old Testament antics are as a rule more over the top than New Testament behavior.

When your God Boss is angry, find something or someone to sacrifice on his desk. Johnson, the internal auditor from Accounting, will make a decent burnt offering. Just be careful not to grind ashes into your boss’s carpet.

God Bosses
God Bosses

Use your imagination. One of the many reasons God Bosses annoy you might be that you can’t believe the real God would create such a megalomaniac. Believe it. Leave room for the possibility he is playing God to compensate for a tremendous lack of confidence. In
either case, it pays to consider what will please him and deliver. Trying to subvert or compete with a God Boss will invariably leave you the loser.

  • Make sure you address your God Boss as he wants to be addressed. If he wants to be called Mr. Smith instead of Joe, do it. Resistance will only cost you peace of mind and whatever influence over your working conditions you hope to achieve.
  • Follow his rules. Even if his rules conflict with company policies, find the middle ground and present him with the illusion that you are doing things his way—from formatting e-mail to the types of pictures you hang in your cubicle.
  • Lose the battles and win the war. God bosses are about power, usually because power hides incompetence. Your goal is to create a pleasant and rewarding working environment to the best of your ability. Battling a more powerful foe over the little stuff will leave you unhappy and resentful.
  • Offer him sacrifices. Seriously. It might cost you less than you think. If he likes donuts, as I mentioned in Chapter 1, show up at his door and offer the whole box. If he likes granola, bring him granola (and eat it yourself around him). These are silly little things, but God Bosses firmly believe that, if you’re not for them, you’re against them.
  • Ask forward forgiveness. It’s not that hard. By saying things like, “If it’s okay with you…” or “Would you mind if…?” What your God Boss will hear is, “You have the power to grant…” and “It’s your will that matters most around here.”
  • Acknowledge his presence. God Bosses don’t think of themselves as invisible. Don’t make the mistake of ignoring him. When he comes into a meeting or the cafeteria, welcome him verbally. If you don’t have the floor at the moment, make eye contact and nod your head to let him know you noticed his arrival.

Your comfort in professional situations begins with your boss’s comfort. Your attitude, if it is sufficiently positive, will put him at ease. His ease is your ease. If your attitude is resentful, he will bring thunder and lightning on your head and the heads of your coworkers.

I won’t go so far as to advise fearing your God Boss. He doesn’t wield that much real power. But it’s worth your while to respect the power he does have. Not to do so is to bring a plague of locusts on yourself.

God Bosses

HOW TO WORK FOR AN IDIOT SURVIVE & THRIVE… WITHOUT KILLING YOUR Boss Cap II: Chapter 2: Will the Real Idiot Please Stand Up? (By John Hoover) Part 5


Thicker Than Blood

Thicker Than Blood

 Typically, the first generation establishes the business, the second generation grows it, the third generation barely sustains it, and the fourth generation destroys what's left.
Typically, the first generation establishes the business, the second generation grows it, the third generation barely sustains it, and the fourth generation destroys what’s left.

When the owner’s kid is working for the company, you’d be a dim bulb indeed to not figure out she is special-rules material. I knew a guy once who drove a limo in New York City for a wealthy business family. Specifically, he worked for a father and his two sons. He was sure his employers liked him so much they were going to cut him in on the family business one day.

That day never came. I tried to warn him it would never happen. Just because somebody likes you, with or without good reason, doesn’t mean they’re going to adopt you. You don’t have to study much history to learn, blood is thicker than water and family money is thicker than blood. I’ve seen heads of families bypass talented, capable, loyal, dedicated, lifelong employees to hand their businesses over to a son or a daughter whose mental faculties have been significantly reduced by generations of inbreeding.

The diminished capacity often contributes to the demise of the enterprise. Typically, the first generation establishes the business, the second generation grows it, the third generation barely sustains it, and the fourth generation destroys what’s left. Not just mom-and-pop shops, but big firms, with hundreds of millions in revenues. Go figure.

There are exceptions. I know of several fourth generation owners who are still growing their family businesses. Like so many things I once rebelled against, nepotism is now on my ‘Get Over It and Get On with Your Life’ list. Even when nepotism is the order of the day, open and honest communication, along with fairness in everything
else, takes away much of the sting. Working for a family owned business can be a rewarding experience.

Thicker Than Blood

HOW TO WORK FOR AN IDIOT SURVIVE & THRIVE… WITHOUT KILLING YOUR Boss Cap II: Chapter 2: Will the Real Idiot Please Stand Up? (By John Hoover) Part 4




Good Bosses are fair

Good Bosses are fair


Fairness in the office simply means applying the rules fairly, equally, and without regard for workplace political alliances. Even if the rules are stuffy and cumbersome, applying them fairly across the board builds good relationships. Holding some people’s feet to the fire while giving others a pass produces hostility, resentment, and payback if it goes far enough.

Communicating openly and honestly with people and treating them fairly is no more than treating them the way you like to be treated. It sounds overly simple, but it works. It’s not hard and it doesn’t cost anything. It also works on everybody, regardless of where you are on the food chain. Good Bosses treat those with more power the same way they treat those with less power. People are people. Yet, how often do you encounter a double standard? Worse, how often do you practice a double standard?

Good employees tend to make Good Bosses and Good Bosses make good employees to those above them because the same factors apply to both. Positive behaviors that produce good relationships work in all directions. Self-indulgent employees usually make self-indulgent bosses.

People who screw the littleI-Love-My-Boss person are just as likely to screw the big person, given the opportunity. If you’re not a fair person or you don’t communicate openly, you’re not going to be the person the cubicle daydreamer with the silly grin on her face is dreaming about.
Managing in all directions is an important concept to comprehend because the implications are so far reaching. If you have a Good Boss, chances are she is also a good employee. The values she demonstrates in your presence are likely to be the same values she demonstrates when you’re not around.

Being a Good Boss is so easy, it makes you wonder why anyone would invest the extra effort and energy required to be a bad one. I guess it all could come down to not knowing any better, monkey see/ monkey do, or choosing the wrong role model out of the available
options. As much as go-along-to-get-along social butterflies around the office want to believe that animals and small children, left to their own devices, never hurt each other, there is always the ever-present hidden agenda or the ever-popular ulterior motive. When you have a bad boss, chances are that somebody is up to no good.


HOW TO WORK FOR AN IDIOT SURVIVE & THRIVE… WITHOUT KILLING YOUR Boss Cap II: Chapter 2: Will the Real Idiot Please Stand Up? (By John Hoover) Part 3


Adjoining bullpens

Adjoining bullpens

Adjoining bullpens
Adjoining bullpens

My first office at Disneyland was not a conventional cubicle. It had tall walls, but no ceiling. I could easily hear one end of telephone conversations in adjoining offices, as well as full conversations. I didn’t give it much thought at the time, but looking back, there were certain people who spoke up robustly as if they didn’t care who overheard them. These were the open personalities who didn’t make it a point or policy to be secretive. I always felt relaxed around those people. They spoke positively about others, which gave me the feeling they probably spoke positively about me in my absence.

The same principle holds when reversed. Disney was the first big corporate atmosphere I ever worked in. The human dynamics of the workplace were a fascinating and frightening thing to behold for a single young person with delusions of grandeur and no polished skills to achieve it. Through experience, I learned that people who habitually speak positively of others tend to do so in all circumstances. Those who criticize others in your presence and recruit you to agree with their cutting remarks will probably criticize you when you’re out of the room.

There were those who always had muffled and subdued conversations in their ceilingless offices. Someone would come into the office, the door would be closed (which was a cue that some secret information was about to be exchanged), and the whispering began. I don’t remember ever being able to decipher what was being said, and I didn’t want to be caught standing with my ear pressed to the wall or tippytoed on top of my credenza, straining to hear what was coming over the wall. Those conversations will forever remain private. But they piqued my paranoia and sure sounded important at the time.

The whisperers might have been trying to cloak their conversation from any number of people in the surrounding, ceilingless offices. Perhaps they were aware that the apparent secrecy of their conversation made the information, whatever it was, incredibly enticing.
Maybe they knew the effect of whispered conversations and didn’t actually say anything—just whispered to bust the neighbors’ chops. None of this is a problem if people are open and honest.

There was a secretary for one of the other Disney executives who took secretiveness to an extreme. Whenever anyone, not just me, walked near her workspace, whether to talk to her or just pass by, she dove on top of the papers on her desk to hide them. I had to pass her desk on my way to the restroom. The next nearest restroom required walking downstairs, out the door, and into another building.

Whenever I walked past her desk, I repeated to myself, Say nothing. Don’t slow clown. Don’t look in her direction. It didn’t matter. The Will the Real Idiot Please Stand Up?  moment I rounded the corner, I heard the papers rustle and a dull thud as she landed on the desktop. She lay there, sprawled out, glaring at me, until I was out of sight.
I always wondered what was so important about her boss’s work to warrant such secrecy. He was a good person, a mid-food-chain manager, like me. He seemed to be an open communicator. The effect of her sprawling performance was curious, though. It created the illusion that whatever was contained on those papers was top secret, which it probably wasn’t, and that she considered me a threat if I found out what was there.

Maybe I should have been flattered that she thought I had so much power. I felt like she had some reason to be suspicious of me, even though I knew she didn’t. Obviously, she felt she had reason to be suspicious of me. Other people had similar experiences with her and she spent a lot of time on top of her desk (especially an hour or so after the first pot of coffee disappeared). Yet, I only worried about what I might have done to warrant such treatment.

Good Bosses are aware that sharing information in a thorough, timely manner makes people feel included, respected, and acknowledged for their ability to contribute. They make open communication a priority. They keep everybody informed all the time. And they are receptive to feedback. Not just between 3 and 4 p.m. every third Tuesday, but all of the time. It’s so remarkably easy that bosses who don’t do it should undergo psychiatric examination and electroshock therapy if necessary.

The equitable treatment of all team members is nearly as important in the workplace as communication. I say nearly as important because, if people are going to be treated inequitably, it’s better to be told up front about it than to pretend it’s not happening. The real sting from preferential treatment of some at the expense of others comes from the charade that everyone is being treated equally. People don’t mind being Cinderella before her run of luck as much as they hate being promised the whole prince and pumpkin thing with no follow through.


HOW TO WORK FOR AN IDIOT SURVIVE & THRIVE… WITHOUT KILLING YOUR Boss Cap II: Chapter 2: Will the Real Idiot Please Stand Up? (By John Hoover) Part 2


Good Bosses

Good Bosses


Good Bosses
Good Bosses

As hard as it is for some to believe, there are Good Bosses out there. If you see a coworker leaning back in her cubicle with her eyes closed and a silly grin on her face, chances are she is taking a vacation of the imagination in which her thoughts have drifted back to a happier place and time when she worked for a Good Boss. Those who have worked for Good Bosses often wax nostalgic. Those who have never had that pleasure of working for a Good Boss can only imagine.

It’s surprisingly simple to be a Good Boss, which makes me wonder why more bosses don’t get it. I’ll wager you know at least one I-Boss who hasn’t done anything right since the Carter administration. Then
again, it took me a long time to get it. The ways in which we humans think and act are like the tires on your car. You never give them any thought until one goes flat. For Idiot Bosses to change, and they can, some incident or series of incidents of sufficient magnitude need to occur before they will know there is a problem. Once they are aware a problem exists—and they are it—they can begin making the transformation from Idiot Boss to Good Boss by adopting the surprisingly simple yet profound golden rule of leadership: Lead the way you like to be led.

Simply put, that’s what Good Bosses do. In most human interactions, the simpler something is, the more effective it is. We all want simple answers, the easy road, and the easy money. If we are convicted, we want to do easy time. Have you ever heard an ad on the radio that said, “…in just three hard payments?”

Good Bosses have the self-awareness to understand how they like to be treated and the common sense to figure out that other people probably like to be treated the same way. How we communicate with one another is a good place to start. Good Bosses provide a constant flow of clear and concise information and encourage you and the rest of your team to do the same. Good Bosses don’t like to play 20 questions in order to discern what you’re talking about; they don’t want to read your mind in order to learn what you’re withholding; and they don’t expect you to read their minds as to what they expect.
If you make your boss play a round of Jeopardy in order to learn what you’re doing, you have a problem with that person and viceversa.

Making someone guess at what you want or to gain important information you have in your little clutches is passive-aggressive behavior.
It’s resentment playing itself out. We tend to be passive-aggressive with people we want to punish. When was the last time you gave the silent treatment to someone you were happy with? The concept is easy to test. Just reverse the situation and consider how you feel when your boss withholds information from you.

Your imagination starts running wild. Doesn’t she trust me? Does she think I’m too stupid to let me in on the big secret? Is she afraid that I might do something I will get praised for? All kinds of thoughts might run through your mind—none of which produce warm and fuzzy thoughts about your boss. If your boss is likewise filled with doubt, how warm and fuzzy can you expect her to feel about you?
Uncertainty always leads to uneasiness. How often do people go to lunch together and speculate about what’s going on around the office? How often do you hear whispered conversations with hands cupped over the telephone mouthpiece? Have you ever found yourself sitting in a bathroom stall when your boss came in with another of her management level? You kept very still, hoping you might overhear
some tidbit of information that would affect your job, didn’t you? Are you aware of how often you strain to overhear what is being said in a conversation in the next cubicle or around the corner?


Cap II: Chapter 2: Will the Real Idiot Please Stand Up? (By John Hoover) Part 1


Will the Real Idiot Please Stand Up

Will the Real Idiot Please Stand Up ?

Will the Real Idiot Please Stand Up
Will the Real Idiot Please Stand Up

Not every boss is an idiot and not every idiot is a boss. Idiot Bosses are not all bad. Most every one of them is good at something. They’re just no good at being bosses. Even though not all bosses are idiots, once you learn more about some of the other boss types, you might be grateful to have an Idiot Boss.
It’s a mistake to assume your boss is an idiot if she is not. Using idiot modification techniques on a non-idiot will prove about as effective as snorting Vick’s Nasal Spray to pass a kidney stone. Depending on the type of boss you work for, using the wrong approach might leave you wishing you were passing a kidney stone just to brighten your day.
I have organized the world of bosses into eight sub-categories:

■ Good Bosses.
■ God Bosses.
■ Machiavellian Bosses.
■ Masochistic Bosses.
■ Sadistic Bosses.
■ Paranoid Bosses.
■ Buddy Bosses.
■ Idiot Bosses.

As we examine each boss type, arrange all of the bosses you have ever worked for in their appropriate category, including your current boss. You might find out that your boss history reveals a disturbing pattern. Having been both an Idiot Boss and an Idiot Employee, I have found if there are prominent boss patterns in your professional
life, it could mean:

A. You are attracted to a certain type of boss to fulfill a subliminal desire for self-punishment.
B. There is a dominant type of boss in your industry.
C. You are chronically unlucky.
D. You are the idiot.
E. All of the above.


Will the Real Idiot Please Stand Up ?

HOW TO WORK FOR AN IDIOT SURVIVE & THRIVE… WITHOUT KILLING YOUR Boss – Cap I: Confessions of a Recovering Idiot (By John Hoover) Part 16


Steps to Stop Stupidity

Steps to Stop Stupidity

The Stupid Gene

HOW TO WORK FOR AN IDIOT SURVIVE & THRIVE… WITHOUT KILLING YOUR Boss – Cap I: Confessions of a Recovering Idiot (By John Hoover) Part 15

Steps to Stop Stupidity
Steps to Stop Stupidity

Be cautious with your idiot diagnosis. Sometimes what appears to be an idiot is just a regular person with idiosyncrasies. We all have
them. Idiosyncrasies become exaggerated with exhaustion and dehydration.

If a person arrives at the office wearing a different color sock on each foot, he might be a genius, a fashion setter, or color blind. Most likely though, he’s an idiot.

Stupidity is different than alcoholism, drug addiction, or smoking.

Well, maybe not entirely. But that’s a different discussion. The analogy I’m about to make borrows liberally from 12-step recovery programs. I’m not disparaging 12-step programs, mind you. The point is that stupidity is a wide-spread disease. We have no control over stupidity in others. We didn’t cause it, we can’t cure it, and we can’t control it. The only stupidity we can deal with is our own.

Steps to Stop Stupidity

Once you’ve become a transcendent idiot—one who can reflect upon his personal condition and circumstances—you can no longer wander back into the idiot population and disappear. Your intelligence, such as it is, will torment you night and day. You’ll suffer from
sleep deprivation (which will exaggerate your idiosyncrasies), begin experiencing psychotic episodes, be involuntarily institutionalized, sprung by an A.C.L.U. lawyer without your knowledge, put back on the street, and worry your family to death until your clog finds you sleeping in your garage.
The only reasonable alternative you have left is to accept the inevitability of stupidity in the form of idiots. Welcome to the real world.
You can sooner change the weather than have any effect whatsoever on the number and distribution of idiots on this planet.

Sometimes it seems as if idiots in human bodies have invaded Earth. Maybe it’s a cosmic conspiracy to keep us from extended space exploration beyond our own neighborhood, which occupants of neighboring galaxies have written off long ago as depressed real estate.
You’re here. I’m here. Wherever they came from, idiots are here.
They’re the only ones who don’t know it. Can’t we all just get along?

I say yes…sort of. Our focus must be on our personal journeys toward recovery, enlightenment, and enrichment. Genuine idiots won’t
be reading this book, so it’s kind of like a private conversation. The good news is that we can live fulfilling lives and have rewarding careers in spite of the idiots we work for.

The bad news is we must do all of the work. Don’t get mad at me.
The idiots don’t even know what’s going on. How can they help? But isn’t a fulfilling life and a rewarding career worth the effort? I say
yes…absolutely. With that, I take you to step one of our journey to idiot-proof (so to speak) nirvana.

The First Step: “I admit that I am powerless over the stupidity of others and my life has become too stupid to manage.”
Don’t let this first step depress you too much. Stupidity might not exactly be a disease, but it should at least be classified as a syndrome.

We can’t begin our journey of recovery until we first confess how much trouble we’re in. Feeling, much less admitting, powerless is intolerable to some people. It implies a loss of control (which they never had anyway) and they just won’t go there. Meet the living dead. These zombies walk around thinking that they can change the idiots in their lives. I say we need to succeed in spite of the idiots in our lives.

Life is unmanageable if you try to control stupidity other than your own. Do I need to say it again? It’s too big. Let it go. God can
handle it. You and I need to invest our resources in managing our own stupidity. Now we’re talking manageable. Maybe. If we keep the whole universal idiot thing in perspective and context, there is hope.

Trying to manage our own stupidity issues without deference to the stupidity around us is like driving the wrong way down the freeway.
You’re asking for trouble. Driving in the right direction, minding your own business, even driving defensively doesn’t guarantee that some idiot won’t run into you. Each one of us is a single car in heavy traffic.

Keep one eye on your rearview mirror.
Confession is good for the soul. Even if the confession is somewhat of a stretch, go with the flow. It’s easier to push off toward the
surface from the bottom of the pool. Admitting powerlessness is the first step to recovery. Subsequent steps will reveal who has the power and how you can tap into it to achieve your own serenity.

Think about what I’ve said in the context of managing yourself.

You are ultimately your own boss, even if you report to someone else.  Are you your own I-Boss, as I am? How effectively you interact with your boss is your choice. Will you be a monkey see, monkey do kind of person? Or will monkey see, monkey think better of it? Will you be able to give yourself an emotional break, even if others won’t?

In the chapters ahead, we’ll get down to brass tacks and examine the whole idiot issue and the roles we play in it. It makes dealing with your I-Boss at the office much easier if you can see the parallels to your own experience. I don’t suggest the type of reflection that leads to regrets. But changing your thinking and behavior doesn’t happen naturally or effortlessly. Contemplating your past will serve only to predict your future unless you consciously decide to follow another road.



This is a post from: Balli Gifts