Office Politics Strategies: Maintaining an Underachieving Workforce
As a bad boss, I like underperformers in my department. They make me look like I am the only one who is capable of leading the pack. Therefore, maintaining an underachieving workforce is one of my main jobs. Promoting underachievers makes me look even better (when they fail). When a promotion comes around, I find that promoting an underachiever is in my best interest. Never promote a promising employee as they may become competition for you in the future. It’s an office politics strategy.
The promising employee gives me a bit of a challenge. A promising employee is one who shows great potential to successfully make it big time within the organization.
They are the star performers. They just do their jobs faster and more effectively. There is really nothing wrong with them but they are a source of endless headache, stress, and sleepless nights for me.
Since day one as a bad boss, I knew that my very existence in the organization depended on identifying and neutralizing the promising employees. Like a hawk scouting for its prey, I can spot a promising employee a mile away. I can smell, hear, and see a promising employee long before anyone in the organization does.
Fortunately for me, most promising employees are the innocent ones too, hence they easily fall prey to my neutralizing tactics. My neutralizing techniques are quite simple, but prove very effective in handling promising employees.
Neutralizing Promising Employees:
- “That is what I was thinking”. – Always automatically utter this sentence to the promising employee whenever the subject comes up to discuss a new idea. You may never know anything about the new idea but this solves that problem. It covers your ignorance up by saying that the idea is nothing new with a disinterested look.
- “I have a job for you, which I am supposed to do, but I can’t at the moment”. – Give the promising employee a job which they are not comfortable doing. These are prone to fail: an unpopular assignment, an office politics maneuvering move, a balancing act, or anything with an uncertain consequence. In addition, if the promising employee fails then it is just the employee’s fault and too bad for him because it was a test. If however, the employee succeeds, then take credit as the one in charge.
- “Great work!” – Always privately praise the promising employee but never in public or officially. A bad boss should do these very discreetly. It should never be reflected in any award, public praise, promotion, or salary increase. This is cheaper and safer for the big boss’ hiney.
- “I can’t rate you perfect even if you are as per the evaluation tool because you will have no more room for improvement.” – Tell the promising employee during his or her performance evaluation that a perfect rate could just not be given. Giving a perfect rating to the promising employee would not be realistic because no one is perfect.
- “You are not yet ready and you still have a lot to learn.” – Always make the promising employee doubtful of him or herself. A bad boss makes the promising employee feel inadequate and lacking. Neutralize the potential of the promising employee to the extent that he or she will not be encouraged to bravely meet success.
- “I am sorry but I have to let you go.” – Know when it is time to fire a promising employee. When all else fails and the promising employee just keeps on succeeding, then it’s time to say goodbye. Despite the hard work and efforts of a promising employee, at the end of the day if it will make you feel insecure in any way then it’s the highway for the promising employee.
The moral of the story is simple. A bad boss hates promising employees. For the bad boss this makes him or her look inadequate and outmoded. If you were in the bad boss’ shoes you will certainly feel insecure. As a result, the bad boss will huff and puff and blow the promising employee down.
Underachiever is Promoted over Hard Worker due to Office Politics:
Disclaimer: Bad Boss posts are mean to be humorous and should not be taken seriously.
The Awesome Power of Taking Credit for Others Work – Like a Bad Boss
Are you familiar with the song, “The Wind Beneath My Wings”, by Bette Midler? Quite touching actually. “It must have been cold there in my shadow…to never have sunlight on your face.” That’s how the song starts. It is about someone who is soaring high up in the sky (figuratively, of course) while something or someone is pushing him up…the wind beneath his wings.
As a boss, I sometimes feel that way…flying high above the sky while my subordinates underneath me are pushing me up, up and away! Obviously, they are there to support me. What else do they need to do? I sometimes think of myself as the Queen and they are my peasants, waiting for something to do while I bask in glory, idolized by many. My colleagues ask, “How do you do it?” and I say, “Well, you know me, that’s my expertise.”
I can’t tell the CEO that it was Jerry who did that fabulous presentation to the client that saved the day; or it was Marta who thought of the marketing strategy that increased sales by 30%. Oh no, that would be the start of the end of my career. Would I give upper management the chance to think of me as the no good middle manager? Ha! I’m wiser than that. At least, I pretend to be.
I know my limits and my capabilities. That’s why my team is there. To make up for what I don’t have. Don’t know what marketing strategies to present to the Management Committee? Ask Jerry. How do I explain the inclusions of that contract and their relevance to the project? There’s Bob. And the wonderful sales funnel, who did that? Of course not me! But it doesn’t matter. What matters is I’m the one who presented those to the gods that be of the company; those people who decide who will get the promotion and that whopping salary increase and bonuses.
Hmmm, I wonder who that lucky gal will be? You guessed it right! That lucky gal who would get the whopping salary increase, bonuses and that wonderful promotion would be me! Every time is my time to shine. It would just confuse Mr. CEO and President if I tell them who did what. He doesn’t need to know. Does he?
Well, that’s how it is at the office…my office where I am the boss. That’s just too bad for those little peasants of mine. They have to do better than what they’re doing right now to fly higher than me. I’m just too smart to let them take credit. For now, they just have to settle as the “wind beneath my wings”.
How To Get The Credit For Other People’s Work:
Disclaimer: Bad Boss posts are meant to be humorous and should not be taken seriously. Some interesting articles on taking credit for others work:
The Perfectionist Boss
I am a perfectionist boss. Everything is perfect because of me. That’s it. Just for reading my words, I have already made you smarter. Your welcome.
My work, how my employees’ work, and even how the stapler is placed on my desk, must be perfect. Everything I see and touch, must be up to my expectations. This doesn’t just stop for me; it goes to my employees as well. I can’t just let them be imperfect while I strive so hard to get everything to perfection. Sure, they get their tasks done at the end of the day, but was it done to perfection? Never. My employees need me to constantly correct them and show them how perfect I am. Here are some things I do to make my department a perfect place to work.
Never Change – Since I’m perfect, and have been so for so long, there’s no need to change. I remind my employees this by stomping their ideas out. When they talk about new things, business ideas or market approach, I remind them of how stupid they are and how perfect I am, therefore my department will never change.
Crushing ambitions – I can never fail. My employees will ruin my perfect image if they fail in trying new things so I have to be overly critical to myself and anyone around me. I extinguish any form of hope. No matter how promising their new ideas may sound, I simply cannot take the risk that it ends up in a failure, not even once. I remind them of this through rejection. I make sure my employees have absolutely zero space for creativity at the workplace.
Never be open-minded – New people, interests and passions are not for me and I simply do not waste my time with them. An open mind allows contaminates and idiotic ideas in which taints perfections. A closed mind is shielded from such stupidity and remains pure, and perfect. When an employee says “I have an idea,” I interrupt them by saying “I’ve already thought about that, my idea is better.”
I’m a perfectionist, and my perspective is the ONLY perspective. Everyone working under me must follow my ways and STOP SCREWING UP!!!
Disclaimer: Bad Boss posts are meant to be humorous and not to be take seriously.
How to Appear Successful – An Ounce of Image…
The Bad Boss Way
There’s a well known saying ‘An ounce of image is worth a pound of performance’ which basically means, we would be much wiser spending our time on our image to appear successful than working hard.
As there are 16 ounces in a pound, then the general opinion is that by focusing more on our image, then we will be over 10 times more successful than people who focus on results.
Given that success from hard work is never guaranteed, then this is a no brainer, creating a good image is less work and has a higher probability of Success.
So what should your image be:
- Look successful
Flashy car, flashy suit, it sounds a cliche, but that’s because it is. Successful people always show the tappings of success: Armani Suit, Porsche, Rolex, etc. If you have all these, then you must be successful. If you can’t afford a Porsche, you can always hire one for the day. Make sure everyone sees it and also make a big deal of it. Then tell people that there is a problem, and you can’t believe the loaner they have given you. Also ensure that you have lots of Porsche Car magazines in your office too, as this will confirm you as a Porsche driver.
- Look busy
Always be in a hurry. This is a clear sign of someone who is Successful. If people try to stop you and speak to you, tell them, “Sorry, I’m late for an important meeting”. Always carry lots of papers, and always always be seen taking lots of work home – you don’t need to do any at home, but we’re talking image here.
- Appear to be in demand
Successful people are always in demand. So, ensure that your calendar is always full, and encourage suppliers and partners to call requesting your time. Remember you don’t need to go. You just need to appear to be in demand.
- Be seen with other successful people
Successful people only ever mix with other successful people. So, the more successful people you can be seen with, the more successful people will think you are. At company functions, only spend time with the senior managers, especially the most senior person there. Also, if you can get your photo taken with a famous celebrity, then make sure this is prominently displayed in your office. We don’t recommend you photoshopping yourself into pictures with say Tom Brady or Barack Obama, not unless it can be done tastefully and well.
- Show your credentials
Have your credentials displayed on your wall. If you don’t have a degree, or have a poor degree, then there are plenty of Papermill Universities who will provide certificates for less than $50. If you do create a fake degree, make sure it’s in a subject that you will not need to use so as to not get found out. For example, I have a PhD in Molecular Biology, but as I work in IT there is no chance anyone will ask me questions on this, but they will still be impressed. If you have any sports trophies you have won, have them on display too. You can always buy trophies and then claim to have picked up an injury which is why you never play anymore.
- Have a good looking wife/girlfriend
A sure sign of success is to have a good looking wife or girlfriend; the more glamourous, then the more successful you will appear. If your partner isn’t good looking, then we suggest you dump her. Unless she is incredibly rich, otherwise she is holding your career back. If you’re single, then find a photo of a beautiful woman, and put this on your desk, claiming that this is your ex. Not only will this send the message out that you’re successful, but it will also signal to other good looking women that you’re a catch and will increase your chances of snagging them.
Remember it’s all about image, appearing to be successful, not actually being successful.
The more of our suggestions you can follow, the more successful you will appear, and don’t forget people are gullible and believe what they see.
If you do this it will lead to you being offered better jobs, higher salaries, etc, and the rewards associated with being successful.
Disclaimer: How to Be a Bad Boss is meant to be humorous. This article, is aiming to show the shallowness of people who focus purely on image, which we do not recommend. According to Forbes, a leader’s image has a direct correlation to their leadership abilities. Learn more about this subject at the links below: