In the last few days, I have read quite a few stories about Bossholes and I keep wondering, is there another perspective on these situations? After all, I’m sure that there are a few people out there who might consider me to be a Bosshole but I don’t think I’m one.
I read one story about a Bosshole and it was clear to me from reading it that the person complaining was clearly in the wrong but she just didn’t get it. If I looked at the situation from her boss’s perspective then I could see why he did what he did. The thing is there are two sides to every story.
It’s much too easy to jump to the conclusion that your boss is a Bosshole when you don’t like what he or she did. I’m convinced that other than Mr. Wonderful, there aren’t many people who wake up every day wondering what new ways might they invent to torment their employees.
I don’t want to play a game of “blame the victim” but when you run into a Bosshole maybe you should look at the situation from his or her perspective. Maybe there are factors that you haven’t considered. Maybe your first perspective is flawed and you might benefit from changing it.
I don’t know. It’s worth a try and it seems to be working for me these days.
Very sorry Charles, but the imbalance of power in this relationship negates that argument.
I do agree that an ability to see other perspectives would likely reduce the amount of “Bosshole” labels that get tagged on managers and owners. I’m very sure that Great Bosses undeservedly get that tag because their staff is not attuned to the requirements of the business – forcing the Boss to assume traits that most employees would find disagreeable. No doubt staff can be jerks too – God knows I’ve been that jerk once or twice (learning experiences).
But the true Bosshole knows that he is holding the axe, and will dangle it above your head as a manipulation tool and as a petty abuse of the power that he/she has over your livelihood. This is a personality type that a leader is vulnerable to assuming (“absolute power corrupts absolutely”). The jagoff employee merely chooses to put his head in the guillotine when engaging in conflict with the boss, and any influence or manipulation they may have over their boss is illusory.
Yes well maybe I’ve been lucky. I haven’t met too many true Bossholes, just some accidental ones.
Interesting perspective. But I think accidental bossholes don’t exist. They are actually a more sophisticated form of the bosshole. And the most dangerous. They disguise as “nice guy” because they have the common sense to know that generally it’s not a good thing to publicly portray oneself as a bosshole. But when the chips are down, and their employees aren’t giving them what they need anymore, (for whatever reason that is) they convert to their tried and tested bossholism as a defence mechanism to protect themselves.
Great bosses can’t be suddenly mistaken for bossholes. But bossholes can pretend to be great bosses and fool people….for a while.
Ah, now you’ve defined a sociopath. They do exist if you believe the literature but I don’t know any (although I know lots of narcissists.)