Horrible Bosses?? Are you one?


I am deeply thankful for comments, thoughts that are posted here in comments section as well as messages I get in Whatsapp. It is encouraging. Please let me know if you want me to cover specific topics! Glad to give my 2 cents.

This is not a movie review of the 2011, classic Hollywood blockbuster!!

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I must confess, I never had an experience of working for horrible bosses or lousy leaders in my 27 years corporate career. I had one lousy,stupid, idiotic, asshole of a boss for a very few months in my second decade of career, late 90s, thankfully, I extricated myself, skillfully. 

So, What is Leadership /Boss etc, as we call it? 

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I am not surprised that I find horrible bosses almost everywhere! More so, over the last decade, the business pressure, deadlines, unethical means, greed, sleaze, competition, incompetence, impotence have all added up to make people behave worse. People overall are forgetting the art of listening, being kind, empathetic, extending out a helping hand. As I wrote before “ARK—–>Act of Random Kindness” has all but disappeared. Sad part is, even plenty of EHS folks, I come across, are acting stupidly like their bosses. In a service oriented /servant based function like EHS, that can take you nowhere! Such people would be caught out, and they will wonder, why the growth that they are expecting is not happening to them! As Jack Welch quotes, Work for a bad boss in a good company! The bad boss is caught & and sent out, just a matter of time! 

As I wrote in the last post, ” IQ can get you hired, but only EQ can get you promoted and take you to stellar career/personal growth”. I will now dwell up on this. I am no way considering myself an expert on this subject (Never pretended to be one) . I am just passing on what worked for me as well as what I learned from leaders for whom I worked. I owe my whatever success to them. 

So what is IQ, EQ, SQ! (General Intelligence, Emotional Intelligence, Social Intelligence) 

IQ = Capability ( The foot hold)

EQ= Will catalyse achieve excellence through emotions.

SQ= The Reach out factor.

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I would put the basics of managing people in to:-

  1. One on Ones (Get to know your people)
  2. Coaching ( Make them better)
  3. Delegation (Grow them better)
  4. Performance Review ( Feedback on how course corrections)

This picture sums up better ( Thanks to my daughter, who gave this desktop flap, She was promoted  recently to manage people from her role as an Individual contributor-  So our family drinks my own cool aid, I serve). 

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How this can be done.

  1. Spend 30 min a week with people. Get to know them 15 min on what they want to say,(Work, personal, issues, problems, troubles, good news/bad news) 10 Min on what you want to say( things going well, where to plug) 5 min on way forward agree to work etc. (Self awareness)
  2. Be visible on shop floor, that is where Issues are. Sitting in cabin and working meetings would get you nowhere. Observe people—>Listen to people, speak less. Show empathy. Get to see things from their perspective. (Social Awareness)
  3. For growing people, people objective tasks need to align to organisation tasks. Measure progress, give feedback on “Behaviours” that people use to achieve results. (Motivation)
  4. Connect with people, pre wire discussions get to a consensus. (Social skills, give and take, going half way etc)

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  5. So what is Social intelligence:-  Social Intelligence is all about navigating the environment around us successfully connecting to people. Social smart is far critical than book smarts.

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As I keep saying, these are long drawn process like changing habits. As well as bridging the knowing doing gap! We know many things, how many we do with perfect execution. May be new year is a good time to plan a change?

Good Luck, God bless.



2000 hrs.


Author: Karthik B; Orion Transcenders. Bangalore.

Lives in Bangalore. HESS Professional of 30+ yrs experience. Global Exposure in 4 continents of over 22 years in implementation of Health, Environment, Safety, Sustainability. First batch of Environmental Engineers from 1985 Batch. Qualified for implementing Lean, 6Sigma, HR best practices integrating them in to HESS as value add to business.

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