27 Apr Bad Management, Episode 1
Today’s story comes to you courtesy of my friend, Ted (not Bundy), and a wild experience he had. Some management techniques are so bad you have to sit awestruck and wonder how the hell they ever occurred. (And yes, this situation took place before the Coronavirus pandemic / Quarantine 2020. Everyone now is social distancing.)
Ted worked for a company that held a mandatory annual corporate meeting. Now, before I get to the happenings, I just want to say that I loathe any type of mandatory meeting. It is especially bad when it involves employees having to travel on their own dime to get to an inconvenient location to listen to a bunch of bullshit. Technology being what it is, there is no reason for it. You could put together a livestream and ask the employees to log on and watch it online. Just sayin. OK, back to the story.
The owner of the company had placed his son in the role of president/CEO. Evidently, the guy had been unable to work anywhere else and Daddy decided to hire him and hand him the keys to the kingdom. 🤦♀️ The first day of this mandatory meeting involved a lot of PowerPoints and dry presentations of financial data. The second day things went from boring to biiiizarrre. I’ve heard a lot of horror stories and I’ve experienced many myself, but this one is super awful.
Ted described the President as a “thin version of Napoleon” with a penchant for screaming. During some marathon lecture he was giving, there was a woman in the audience texting. He grabbed her cell phone, took it to the front of the room, and then destroyed the phone with a hammer he conveniently brought to a corpo meeting. I mean: what the what?! Turns out the woman wasn’t even an employee; she had been planted there, used an old cell phone she no longer wanted, and the whole thing was a charade meant to instill fear in everyone else.
To rub salt in the wound, before Ted left the meeting, his boss told him that instead of going home, he would need to fly to Minneapolis for an in-person meeting with a client. He wasn’t happy but he did it. Once he arrived, the client told him, “It’s a little odd that you had to fly here for this. We told your boss we could do all of this by Skype to save you a trip…”
Don’t be like these people.
Life is tough enough. Dealing with abusive managers, meaningless meetings / meetings that could have been an email, tyrannical behavior, unnecessary travel that keeps a person from being home at night with family, etc., will drive good employees away. I’m sure it’s no surprise to you to learn that after Ted got home from these trips, he resigned. Who can blame him?
Does your management style need some help? Or are you stuck in a company with dictatorial tactics? There is definitely a better way! Let’s talk about it.