Those who follow me on Twitter might have noticed an article that I tweeted last week, “Do You Think You Could You Do A Better Job Than Your Manager?” The excellent article was written by Amy Rees Anderson, an author, speaker and blogger on such things as leadership and business growth (she’s one of my favorites). Her article was written based on the results of a survey that Monster.com published recently that indicated 84% of those surveyed could do a better job than their manager.
Based on the results of that survey, Amy Rees Anderson asked the question, “If so many people believe they are better than their boss, then how did so many bad bosses get appointed to their positions?” She then discusses four very common mistakes companies make when promoting people into management positions.
As long as you have a bad boss, keep doing your job to the best of your ability…
So what happens when you find yourself in a situation where you have a bad boss? My suggestion, assuming you wish to advance in your career, is to cultivate the characteristics that make for good leaders and good bosses. Unfortunately, having a bad boss could add a degree of difficulty because your boss likely won’t notice or care that you are developing those characteristics. On the flip-side, it might help you develop those characteristics to a deeper level because you are working to develop those under adverse circumstances.
What are the desired characteristics of good leaders and bosses? The lists will vary, depending on who you ask, but they usually will have common threads with the characteristics that are recommended by Dee Hock, founding CEO of Visa International: “Hire and promote first on the basis of integrity; second, motivation; third, capacity; fourth, understanding; fifth, knowledge; and last and least, experience.”
In the meantime, as long as you have a bad boss, keep doing your job to the best of your ability (that’s integrity). It may be that you should seek to move on to find a better work situation, whether inside your current company or somewhere else altogether. However, sometimes that is not always possible or practical. Continue to develop the characteristics of great leaders and bosses and someone will notice – someone who appreciates your leadership qualities.