Wednesday, May 12, 2010

Managing Minors

I work for a company that bought another company. The two companies now work in the same building. They had someone who does my job. Now there are two of us. He thought he was my boss and I thought I was his. He is about 20 years my junior but wants to be my senior. Are you still with me? Should I be the adult and take the high moral ground or do I spend my day plotting to blow up his lunchbox? He's fresh out of the education system and full of newly acquired management speak so he requires an interpreter most of the time to assure us he's not setting fire to platforms and when he keeps referring to touchpoints he's not about to molest us. Should we put as much value on getting the right boss as we do getting the right job? When I think back through my resume of previous 'in commands' I come up with a frightful list of disoriented, disengaged and some all together scary human beings. From full time magazine readers to the ever present teflon manager with the non stick work coating, I think I've suffered under them all. What is it that makes a boss a real plonker? Is it the David Brent character of 'The Office' scenario where he thinks he's a good all round bloke and friend of everyone when the reality is most of the workforce want to snap him like a twig, or the psychotic power woman with the hair that doesn't move and who keeps saying we're moving forward when you know it's more like pushing you know what up you know where? What makes a good boss...nice feedback? No it's cash. Anyone who tells you that job recognition is as simple as a thank you and a pat on the back should be thrashed. I won't bother asking the new boss for any feedback because it probably would come via text message and ending with a :) or a smiley face.


  1. Oh god, the newbie full of corporate crapulence who honestly believes that an MBA is worth having - poor you!

    The only thing you can do is occasionally ask what experience they have in whichever particular 'flashpoint' is being discussed at that time: "Oh, so in your last project, did you manage to sort out the strategic framework that formed the key corporate paradigms of which we're now ready to offload? No?"

    Or: "That was lovely, Brendan. Can you repeat that in English whilst I go and sharpen my portable, hand-held graphite word processor, or 'pencil'?"

  2. You know you won't win. I've been playing that game for 30 years. Kath's got it down pat. Actually my boss is very 'plain English' doesn't stop him being a controlling micromanaging asshole!

  3. Heh. My supervisors are all younger than me, including the manager. I don't care. Anything they tell me to do is answered with "yes Boss". Then we all laugh, because we all know I'm going to do it my way anyway.

  4. Its not just the women who have to tolerate these morons. Us blokes has to put up with that shite as well - tosspots who are so on the make that they are happy to destroy a business to make themselves look whiter than white in the bosses eyes.

    Its terribly hard when you are the geek out the back doing geek stuff, but you know more about how to run the business profitably than the people above you actually running it.

    There are only two solutions: escape, or head down and tolerate the shite until the MBA-types have either screwed up and been tossed out or they get their next promotion and go screw up something else.

    I've only come across one person who has an MBA who I have any respect for. I've come across a few who started the MBA and dropped out in horror saying "if I do this crap I'll destory my business". What a worry.