The impact of Bad Bosses

good badd boss

It amazing the impact that bad bosses have on people and their morale.

I have just written two posts, one on the worst boss I ever had, and one on the best boss I ever had.

Interestingly, I got 10 times as many likes and almost as many more comments on the bad boss post, than I did on the good boss post.

So many people commented and said that they could associate with my bad boss experience and they were happy for sharing that experience because now they didn’t feel alone.

I think bad boss experiences stay with us much longer and have a much bigger impact on us, I also get the impression from your feedback, that their are many more bad bosses around than good bosses.

I hope I fall in the former category, although I’m sure some people felt I was a bad boss.

With my bad boss, I can honestly say that his negative impact on me lasted at least 6 months after I had left and joined another company. Both in terms of my own self confidence and self esteem, for a while I thought the problem was with me, even though I knew he was a really bad boss and saw how he treated some of the other staff.

It wasn’t until I had some coaching with Julie Starr that I was finally over it, and I could move on, in confidence, with my own career.

In talking to a friend, she said having a bad boss was worse than being in love; her bad boss was always on her mind, in her thoughts and sometime her dreams – I think nightmares is probably a more accurate word.

The amounts of stress generated by bad bosses is not good for our physical health, let alone our mental health or emotional wellbeing.

Their impact can even spill over into our private lives too, where we bring the bad boss into our homes, through conversations with our partners about them.

When I asked the question how people would deal with their bad bosses if they would see them again later, most said they would just smile, their bad boss wasn’t worth the effort of making any comments to.

I fully agree I think this would be a much better course of action, although I would ignore mine, and only smile if forced to make contact.

In my own recent experiences with bad bosses, once you have left or they have left, it’s best to just forget them, put the experience down to bad luck and try not to dwell on things, otherwise we give them too much importance in our lives and their negative impact can lives on.

One of my bosses told me I would never be able to complete a goal I set for myself, which I did but only after she had left the company. Many people told me I should write to her, and let her know I had been successful.

But why should I do that, I was happy to be out from under her clutches, and writing to her only would put me back into them, and if she read the mail she would probably write back with some sarcastic comment, which would then only re-open old wounds.

No she wasn’t that important, certainly not now!

In my opinion, once a bad boss has gone, raise a glass in celebration and forget them, the sooner they are forgotten and out of your thoughts, the sooner you can get on with the rest of your professional life in good health, good spirits and in confidence.

How do you deal with the bad bosses you had, once they have left?

Gordon Tredgold

Leadership Principles