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20 Signs That You Are a Bad Boss

20 Signs That You Are a Bad Boss



It is every one’s wish to work with a good boss. However given the fact that we all are not the same, that wish doesn’t come to pass always. Working with a bad boss can be a very challenging and frustrating one. In fact it is one sure way to hit the rock bottom part of your career.

So the question is; ‘Are you a good or bad boss’? If you have issues with rating yourself, these 20 tips will make you know what side of the divide you belong.

Here are 20 typical signs that should serve as a detector for a bad boss.

1. Ardent Late Comer

The bad boss never resumes early for the day’s task. He arrives late when the day’s activities have far commenced. This habit never makes you achieve great results. Rather you will be labeled a bad boss, because it means you don’t take your job seriously.

2. Laziness

You are supposed to oversee tasks in the office; staying aloof and not doing so means you are carefree and are not ready for the positive growth of your brand    .Hard work is what will stand your brand out all the time.

3. Insensitivity

Bosses who do not feel what members of their team feel will be termed insensitive. It is your duty to take the responsibility of knowing how your employees are able to juggle their work life and family life together.

4. Owing Salaries

It is no longer news that a worker is worthy of his wages. Therefore it is imperative for a boss to pay his team when due. If you fail to do this at the stipulated time, you will not be in their good books.

5. No Relationship

An unfriendly and harsh boss will never get the best of his team. Rather he will succeed at repelling his people. If you do not take building a good relationship with your team seriously, you will have failed at taking the boss-employee relationship beyond the work front.

6. Spendthrift

Every one you employ wants to be sure that you will be able to manage well that which they have worked hard for. This is so because if you do not give them that security by acting it, you create a ripple effect of unpaid salaries .

7. Romantic Entanglement

Professionally it doesn’t add up for a boss to be romantically entangled with his or her employee. When this happens, productivity level is hampered and favoritism sets in. It is advised that as a boss you stay away from romantic relationships with your team.

8. Overwork

Overwork is when employees are not given a chance to catch their breath after very hard tasks. Being a slave driver isn’t a too good medium to drive your team. Let them have some time of projects to recuperate.

9. No Breaks

It is mandatory for holidays like Christmas, thanksgiving, New Year and other festive dates to be observed. It is the right of every team member to be allowed on holiday. If there are reasons why that can’t happen, it is important to make it known. Vehemently refusing your team to unwind during these times is a bad act.

10. Drunkenness

Some bosses don’t mind drinking to stupor during working hours. If you make it a habit drinking to stupor at the office, you will be labeled as irresponsible. It is better you keep your bad habit at home rather than in the office.

11. If Your Employees Resign Easily

Great bosses can boast of long standing employees. If your case is the reverse then it means they simply cannot put up with your excesses. It also simply means that they’re tired of you. That’s bad for business.

12. The Last To Get Information

It is your duty, as the one who calls the shot in the office to be the first to know about information flying around. When the reverse is the case, it means you are not really paying attention to the activities in your work environment.

13. No Reference

It is normal for employees to leave one organization to join another for reasons best known to them; it could be for better pay, new challenge et al. If the bulk of employees that leaves your organization never makes reference to you or your organization, then you need to check yourself, you are likely not a good boss.

14. Always Use Threats

You are indeed a bad boss if you are fond of bullying or threatening your team with queries, warnings, pay-cut, demotion or outright sack before you could get them to do things for you or the organization.  If you are a good boss, it is supposed to come naturally even if it goes beyond the call of duty.

15. Not Interested in Welfare

You have the characteristics of a bad boss if all you care about is for your employees to meet and surpass your corporate targets without any iota of concern for their welfare. As you motivate them to meet targets, you should also show them that you care about their wellbeing.

16. Hardly Remember the Names of Your Team

If you don’t make the conscious effort to always call your employees by their names, it is a pointer that you are not really connecting with them and that is a sign that they are sure to perceive you as a bad boss. Calling people by their name, especially by their first names is the first step in connecting with them.

17. When you Get No Good Wishes

If on your special dates no member of your team send you gifts, text messages, or even puts a call through to you, then you need to watch it. It simply means that you have not been impacting them positively.

18. Employees are More Productive When You are Absent

Because of the bossy nature of some team leaders, most employees find it difficult to maximize their potentials. If your team performs better when you are away than when you are present, it goes to show that your presence is hampering productivity; if that’s your case, then you are a productivity killer, which is really bad.

19. When You Don’t Consider Suggestion

If you have the habit of always turning down people’s suggestions, it goes to show that you are authoritative and indeed a bad boss. In most cases you will realize that the numbers of suggestion you get when you call for it will be minimal or none.

20. You Don’t Get Invitation For Employees’ Functions

If year in and year out, you don’t get an invite to be at an employee’s birthday, wedding, burial, et al, it goes to show that you are a bad boss. You would have displayed some tendencies in the past that would have warranted that.

Did you pass for any of the signs stated above? If you did, then its time you had a rethink. No bad boss gets his organization to an enviable height in business. Rather he loses out on every side.

Some survey has shown that some business owners are the very architect of their own downfall. Take a proper cue from the tips above and make the necessary shift that is needed.

Published by Valentine Belonwu

My name is Valentine, founder of this site, an entrepreneur working as a moderator at Bizsugar a small business community news site. Connect with me on Google+ at Valetine Belonwu


  1. Kabenlah Cudjoe · March 28, 2013

    wow! Valentine, this is an interesting post.

  2. Jon Rhodes · March 29, 2013

    I have seen many of these traits in bosses before. The problem I think is that some bosses have not experienced being an employee for so long that they forget what it is like. For these people they should spend a week every now and then working just like an employee to see what it is like for themselves. Tell the workers they want treating equally for this week, or move to another department if it’s possible, so no one recognises them.

    • Valentine Belonwu · March 29, 2013

      Hi Jon,
      Thanks for stopping by and leaving your valuable comment. Some bosses are very hard to work with especially the once that haven’t experienced being employee and I’m glad you liked the post.

      Hope to see more of you.

  3. L · July 22, 2013

    A bad boss makes deep personal relationships with a few of his employees, like selling his personal belongings to an employee to buy favors.

    A bad boss is one who doesn’t greet you in the morning or in passing down the hallway or doesn’t introduce himself as your boss to outsiders. He’s generally moody and insecure but ‘turns it on’ like a faucet for favorite employees or his bosses or persons outside of his department-Shallow effect.

    A bad boss ignores emails and avoids
    taking responsibility for communicating to all employees equaly but picks and chooses who he will respond to and can say he doesn’t have to answer emails due to his preference but required his employees to
    immediately stop what they’re doing to take his calls or a multitude of impromptu desk appearances and can toss papers into an inbox.

    A bad boss works employees until they break even ignores their requests for help.

    A bad boss plays extreme favorites to a few employees and provides trained backups
    for some so favorites who can call in sick excessively or take long vacations while over working the rest of the department–Anything to keep his favorites in a better position than the rest.

    A bad boss puts very little communication in writing unless he’s planning on targeting or bullying an employee. No consistent policies and procedures for all employees. Refuses to discipline ‘favorites’ to keep the department off balance and under his control.

    A bad boss hides his mistakes by
    intimidating employees using complaints from favorite employees, to make verbal attacks openly or behind closed doors then changes the facts of a complaint against his favorites to a poor performance hunt to discredit and blindside any employees who question anything outside of the norm of fear in order to force outiders off the trail to retain (false) credibility with all who question him regardless of lack of clear consistent dicrections. A bad boss, in fact will verbally change directives often, so that if the changes are pointed out, he can acoust the employee that they are argumentative, can’t keep us to with the flow of business communications, or lack followup skills to correct an errant result.

    In other words, a bad boss is openly unfair, lacks uniformity, keeps employees off kilter and can make your like at work a living hell.
    And you have to put up with it because there’s no laws to prevent this type of workplace bullying…fingers crossed HR1766 will pass and workplace bullying will be a crime.

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