I Hate My Boss

Recently, I’ve noticed a disturbing trend in “management procedure” and would like some feedback from anyone who might know anything.

I work at a high school; I teach. Recently, the old, beloved principal retired, and was replaced by a new, younger man who decided to “reorganize” things… and has driven the entire staff batshit crazy trying to meet his demands without actually violating any laws.

Among his beliefs:

*All high school teachers are identical. They are all college graduates, and are therefore able to teach any subject area, regardless of their preferences, abilities, or specific degree.

*Teachers do not need fixed classrooms. They can shuttle around from room to room, just like students do, with no loss of efficiency.

*Employees can be effectively motivated by threats.

*No one ever really NEEDS to go to the bathroom.

*Effective teaching consists of simply standing at the front of the room and talking.

*It is possible to build “teams” and execute “teamwork” while simultaneously trying to get teachers to “inform” on each other when policies are bent or violated.

*When a given organizational situation isn’t working, simply eliminate it and substitute chaos. Employees will reorganize it FOR you. Actually planning and changing anything is unnecessary.

*If anyone asks you a question you don’t like, scream at them. People will soon quit asking you questions.

Now… under most circumstances… I’d simply regard this as one idiot, out of his depth, exemplifying the “Peter Principle,” and having been promoted to his level of incompetence. But the thing is… I have seen this style of management before.

Is there some school of thought out there that thinks this is an effective way to manage your personnel?

Yeah, the “Look at me, I’m a weeny with power” school of management.

I call this the Swinging Dick Philosophy of Management. “If I swing my dick around enough, everyone will be really impressed and notice how powerful I am.” Seems to be the favored method, in my experience.

Well, yes. I think everyone has, at one time or another, had a boss who was insecure enough in his authority that he had to clout folks over the head with it.

I’m just wondering if this is beginning to get institutionalized, though. I mean, I’d assume even the dumbest administrator would realize that shuffling employees from office to office on a daily basis would DAMAGE PRODUCTIVITY, HARM EMPLOYEE MORALE, and GENERALLY FUCK THINGS UP!!!

And yet, I am hearing that this is being done on a fairly wide scale.

Are they teaching some weird new shit in business classes of which I am not aware?

God, I hate your boss, too. Maybe you can have a talk with your boss’s boss (aka Superintendent Chalmers).

Arrange for his demise.

that old chestnut never fails…

Maybe if we call ourselves a team, we won’t realize that we’re just a bunch of powerless, micromanaged peons!
Paraphrased from Dilbert.

It is a product of the “management” notions that started being discussed in post war (that’s after WWII) America. It’s gotten worse and worse. MBAs are taught to do these things.

Don’t get me started. Just accept my deep sympathy.

That’s actually not bad. I would also add that Wang-Ka’s (I just got that:D ) boss might ascribe to the “Big Splash” Philosophy of Management. That’s where the new boss thinks that the first thing he/she should do is completely change everything he has the power to. It doesn’t matter if it’s better…it just has to be NEW! and DIFFERENT!.

It’s not actually taught in business school. It think it’s more a side-effect of being inundated with crap that makes every MBA think he deserves a $200,000 salary right out of school and that he should be VP by 30.

I’ve had to put up with this for almost 30 years on a 2-3 year cycle. Whether on active duty or as a civilian, I’ve always had a Commanding Officer. And the absolute rule of being a Commanding Officer is that you must leave your mark.

Invariably, the mark is unmarking what the last Commanding Officer did. Or deciding to implement that lastest Management Theory du Jour. We’ve been thru Demming and TQL and TQM and Six Sigma and I don’t even remember what all. The only thing I know for sure is that two years from now when we have another change of command, we’ll have yet another CO with Great Ideas that will be written up in the form of a commendation when he’s relieved by the next Commanding Officer.

Have I mentioned how much I love my job??

No, it’s not a management philosophy. It’s just management incompetence.

Sigh. For some reason, newly appointed managers seem to think that what they’re supposed to do as a new manager is “to swing their dick around” (to re-use the phrase). It’s really just a sign of insecurity and an indication that they don’t have a clue.

What is troubling is that this phenomenon is rampant (as other posters have noted). And worse, if this counter productive behavior isn’t addressed by the manager’s boss, then that boss is just as incompetent.

Why is this behavior so prevalent? Well, first, without a role model and mentoring they just don’t know about more effective management behavior. They haven’t been exposed to anything better. The only role model many of the male managers have is either a) their high school football coach, or b) their fast-food restaurant manager. I can only imagine what role models the military has.

Bottom line, in their ignorance they do more harm than good.

Oh, god, I had one of those. I went to HIS boss and said, “What we were doing before worked, this doesn’t. Why do you keep backing him up?” “Oh, well, I think it’ll work better.” “But it doesn’t. And hasn’t.” “Can’t you just try it?” “Fine!”

Three years later, it’s still not working.

I always tried to remember every stupid, idiotic, petty, demeaning thing that was inflicted on me so that I could at least try to do the opposite when I managed folk. My bosses thought I was a renegade, but my employees were productive and reasonably happy. Courtesy, respect, and communication are always appreciated.

We had a director who had the radical concept of family first. It actually got him fired (well, I think he technically walked out in anger) when he refused to go to an offsite meeting one night when one of his children had something going on.