ll archives: How Not to be a Horrible Boss


If you’ve taken the leap to hire an employee(s), congrats, Boss Lady! This is a huge step for your business and for your personal development as a leader. You may be feeling the pressure to balance what’s best for your budding business and being a “good” boss, but instead of focusing on what to do to make you a “good” boss, let’s focus on what not to do so you can avoid being a, well, horrible boss. Office Space, Horrible Bosses, The Devil Wears Prada and The Office all have something in common—the characters that portray the boss are well, to be quite frank, batshit crazy! It’s funny when it’s all for entertainment purposes, but your skills as a leader are no joking matter. The quality of your leadership directly impacts the success of your business. That may seem like a bit of a reach, but according to Inc.com, a jerk boss is a complete productivity killer. Moreover, 75% of employees say that their boss is the worst and most stressful part of their job, and 33% of employees with bad managers admitted to not putting in maximum effort. What’s the conclusion? Being a horrible boss messes with your money, honey!

Avoid these three managerial mistakes and you’ll be well on your way to having passionate, motivated employees.

You Don't Clearly Communicate

Ladies, you probably know how important communication is. How many times have you had to restart a project because a client didn’t clearly communicate their needs? *Raises hand.* Clear communication is key in the employee-employer relationship. Horrible bosses are guilty of failing to clearly communicate their expectations, goals, deadlines and timelines. Or worse, they communicate those things, and then change their mind without informing their unsuspecting employees. I love me some Meryl Streep in Devil Wears Prada (who doesn’t?!), but she expected her team to be mind readers, and that just ain’t cute in real life, ladies! No one wins in this situation. You don't get the production that you need, and your employees will think you’re cray-cray.

You Fail to Motivate

If you want to be an effectual leader, learn how to motivate. Your employees look to you to set the tone and pace of their working environment and to care about their professional development. Failing to motivate could leave your employees with a lackadaisical attitude about the business leading to decreased productivity and focus. Think of motivating your employees as a form of investment, and investing in your employees can reap rewards that directly affect the success of your business—increased sales, improved customer service, better morale, etc.

You Refuse to Delegate

Okay, I get it, your business is your baby and even the most trusted employee may never be able to do those key tasks as well as you can, right? But the problem is, if you try to accomplish all of the things on your businesses' to-do list, you're most likely going to fail—there simply aren’t enough hours in the day, ladies. Furthermore, there may be some things on that list that are not your strengths. Recognizing that and appropriately delegating those tasks to your capable employees (remember how capable they are--you hired them for a reason!) makes you an effective leader. Refusing to delegate is a key quality of a horrible boss because you aren’t efficiently leveraging the strengths and talent of your employees.

Most of us have had at least one horrible boss in our working life, but you don't have to be one of them. Avoid the actions we've discussed above, and instead of bad boss, you’ll be on track to being referred to as badass boss!