Archive for October, 2009
People Share Childish, Bad Boss Stories on YouTube
Many people in L.A. on Boss’s Day couldn’t resist using levity to discuss bad, childish bosses once they saw the angry yet fearful, 6.5′ TOT boss with his famed pacifier. I guess humor helps us make a point – or at least deal with annoying, seething (or teething!) people. I often say that humor is the shortest pipeline to the memory banks.
Let’s face it, when bosses (or co-workers) act like toddlers, you sometimes have to laugh to yourself, and then do your best to use your parenting skills. My book, Tame Your Terrible Office Tyrant™ (TOT): How to Manage Childish Boss Behavior and Thrive in Your Job, is about the most common, everyday variety of bad episodic behavior that we can all fall into if not careful. (Tyrannical bullies who are lawsuit-worthy certainly are not laughable.)
It was nice to hear some positive stories from both workers and enlightened anti-TOT bosses, too. I spoke with many more great people who we couldn’t get on camera due to the short length of these videos. If you’re one of them, thank you for your time and great insight; I wish we could have had it run for a half hour!
When it comes to the office, “the child within” should certainly stay there. Here’s proof: the YouTube video clip on funny, bad/childish boss stories, with the TOT boss looking a bit aloof: http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=OYQSOZEMVCI
We can humanize the workplace – together!
TOT Boss Gets Interest in Santa Monica on Boss Day
Here’s a glimpse of last Friday’s event for National Boss Day on the famed 3rd Street Promenade in Santa Monica, CA, October 16, 2009. Scores of people told their personal anecdotes of good and bad boss behavior on tape. Many talked about the way they manage, and some even ran family businesses – with team members going at it on-camera (good naturedly, of course!) They agreed with the premise of Tame Your Terrible Office Tyrant™ (TOT): How To Manage Childish Bosses & Thrive in Your Job… In other words, most bosses at some point have these episodic TOT moments, and you can usually be the “parent” and manage up. They realized the most common culprit is the “TOT,” not tyrant… the terrible two, grown child often acting out of fear or spurts of unwieldy power.
I reminded the TOT boss that this anniversary was a good time to start behaving like an adult, for the sake of humanity and office productivity. But he looked away. Videos to come.
National Boss Day in L.A.: Tell Your Tales
For National Boss Day, I’ll be conducting person-on-the-street interviews with office workers in Los Angeles on Thursday, October 15th and Friday, October 16th, on the busy Third Street Promenade at the corner of Wilshire and 3rd in Santa Monica. If you live in the Southland, please join us and share your insights, good and bad, on bosses and work.
Videos of these testimonials, along with the backdrop of our famed TOT: a tall, life-size TOT-boss icon from Tame Your Terrible Office Tyrant™ (TOT), will be posted online at various sites, including www.TameYourTOT.com.
On National Boss Day, each October 16th, millions of employees thank their bosses for their leadership and bigheartedness. Due to the current recession and tough job market, this year provides a unique opportunity for workers and managers to have a useful dialog about more productive interpersonal relations in the office during uncertain times.
The current environment has exacerbated bad boss behaviors, turning normally even-tempered bosses into Terrible Office Tyrants™, or TOTs. As you may know, Tame Your Terrible Office Tyrant™ (TOT); How to Manage Childish Boss Behavior and Thrive in Your Job (John Wiley & Sons), talks about “parenting” unruly managers who resemble tots in their “Terrible Twos.” For managers, it addresses how to create a “safe for success, humanized workplace,” that is TOT-free.
TOT Boss Icon to Make Premier Public Debut
On both days, a 6’ 5” Terrible Office Tyrant (TOT) featured on the book cover will be present. The overgrown tyke, angry yet fearful with a large pacifier in his mouth – is designed to illustrate that behind the tough exterior of many bosses is often a toddler who has trouble modulating power. That’s because TOT episodes can be a human condition if not kept in check, whether we’re two or 52.
Event Coincides with New Boss Research
The on-the-street interviews on National Boss Day coincide with the release of Lynn Taylor Consulting’s (LTC’s) new national study on bad and childish boss behavior. Conducted by an independent global research firm and commissioned by LTC, the national five-year comparative study of boss behaviors found at TameYourTOT.com under “Survey Findings,” revealed increases of up to 50% in such childish traits as self-oriented, impulsiveness and stubbornness.
Tame Your Terrible Office Tyrant™ (TOT) represents seven years of research, interviews and my insights on dealing with frustrating managerial and workplace situations while thriving in one’s job. It covers 20 of the most common behaviors by chapter, from the “bratty” to “little lost lamb” traits – including overly demanding, stubborn, tantrum-throwing, to moody, fickle and whiny behavior, to name a few – featuring true anecdotes and tips. There is also a special section for CEOs who want to mitigate harmful Terrible Office Tyrant (TOT) behavior, and throughout the book, bosses gain insight on what not to do with their teams.
Managing up requires awareness of core human instincts, while at the same time setting limits as you would with a child, minus the patronizing. While this is a serious subject, I strongly believe that humor is the shortest pipeline to the memory banks. If I don’t see you later this week, I hope you have a GOOD Boss Day.
New Survey Shows Bad Boss Behaviors Are On The Rise
A new survey commissioned by my firm, Lynn Taylor Consulting, finds that bad boss behaviors are on the rise. The five-year, national comparative study looked at bad boss (a.k.a. TOT) traits and childish behavior, such as Stubborn, Self-oriented, Overly demanding, Impulsive, Interruptive and Tantrum-throwing, and found bad boss behaviors rose by 50 percent!
The study, which was conducted from 2004 to 2009, found that “Self-oriented” catapulted to the lead in 2009, swapping places with “Stubborn” in 2004. This means that some bosses are more self-consumed than ever! The survey also found that seven in 10 Americans believe bosses and toddlers with too much power act alike. As I mentioned in BusinessWeek, we are all human and behind your boss’s professional façade is a grown kid who acts out and can’t moderate his or her power.
As I said on Fox news, TOT behaviors can be managed by employees. The whole point of TOT taming is to “manage up” — not to get revenge on your boss, or to fight fire with fire.
My book Tame Your Terrible Office Tyrant™ (TOT): How to Manage Childish Boss Behavior and Thrive in Your Job (John Wiley & Sons) identifies 20 types of bad boss traits and offers concrete solutions to both employees and managers to tame bosses who are acting like misbehaving kids. To order go to Amazon, Barnes & Noble or Borders.
If you’ve got TOT stories or thoughts on humanizing the workplace, please share your story through my sites or at any of the articles on the home page of TameTourTOT.com. You can also follow me on Twitter.com: @workplaceexpert for my thoughts on boss and leadership matters.