The Witch is Dead, Now What? – Dealing With the Aftermath of a Bad Boss

The Witch is Dead, Now What? – Dealing With the Aftermath of a Bad Boss

It’s finally happened. The unthinkable. The unlikely. The extremely rare! The tyrannical, psychotic bastard (substitute bitch and her as needed) that has been terrorizing employees for years has finally been discovered and removed by his boss. So now what? How do we deal with the wreckage and get everyone back on track?

There are unfortunately a great many bad bosses in the workplace, for a number of reasons. Most of the ones in my experience weren’t bad people, just bad bosses. People arrive in management or leadership roles by many paths. Typically they receive little training and what they’ve learned from experience is likely filled with bad practice. There are many competing agendas to be addressed and the game becomes one of survival. These bosses while tragic and destructive in their own right are not the subject today.

A few bad bosses are actually bad people and that is today’s subject. These people lie, cheat, and steal routinely. They’re focused on their goals and have no concern for how their actions impact other people. They also tend to be smart enough to do these things within the system and remain undetected. In my experience their unethical behavior was obvious to many people below them while the people above remained oblivious. Asleep at the wheel.

The antisocial behavior of a bad boss can poison a work environment. Trust can be destroyed on a large scale from the boss’ direct team all the way down the chain to the most junior members of the organization. Bitterness between individuals is also common being a result of the manipulation of people in the workplace. If the bad boss is removed the low trust and bitterness tend to linger.

When a widely disliked leader is present he or she is the focus of much of the negative energy the leader created within the organization. When that leader is removed the negativity can remain in a less focused state. Individuals who were seen (sometimes unjustly) as close to the former leader may become the subject of distrust and bitterness. Those trying to repair the damage and help the organization recover can face an uphill battle.

This subject is complex and is not meant to be resolved here. The purpose here is to encourage the reader to think about their own workplace and how their own actions impact the environment.

Take a moment and consider the following:

  • Are You Contributing to a Bad Environment? – Are you making decisions and taking actions that you know are wrong and are hurting people at the behest of a bad boss? Are you just in a survival mode protecting yourself and your job at the expense of others? Is it time to reconsider your position?
  • Are You Enabling Bad Behavior? – Are you routinely defending the indefensible? Are you commonly defending business decisions that can’t possibly have their stated purpose?
  • Are You Considering Healing Time? – If you are currently in a recovering organization does the new leader understand the extent of the damage? Is a reasonable amount of time being allowed for the organization to heal?

©2017 Joseph T Drammissi

2017-07-12T16:02:27+00:00 July 12th, 2017|Categories: Enlightened PM, Leadership, Management, Workplace Culture|Tags: , |0 Comments

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