A bad boss is bad for business and a good boss is will make a business thrive

Photo by Pablo Varela on Unsplash

I have never been the boss of anyone but I have ‘bossed’ many times. And all the good and bad bosses I’ve had have similar traits and characteristics.

It seems so silly to me to be a bad boss because your business will suffer for it. Whether you like it or not the employees of any business make the business. They are the ones keeping the lights on and making sure everything runs on time.

Without any employees, there is no business. Don’t believe any boss that tells you they are doing you a favour. They are not doing you a favour, there are no favours in the employment relationship. It is a relationship of mutual benefit.

You work and ensure the business is profitable and your boss pays you. It is a mutually beneficial arrangement to both parties, or at least it should be.

What makes a good boss?

  1. They care about you and take the time to ask you how your weekend was or recent holiday.
  2. They want you to take time off work because they know you are not a robot but a human being with needs.
  3. They want you to eat and have a lunch break. This is a basic human need. If they don’t let you eat they are violating your human rights.
  4. They are generous with their time and money. They want to teach you things and take time to teach you about their business or what makes it work. They pay you properly and are not stingy with giving you a raise or bonus. We all need to eat and have leisure time.
  5. They greet you in the morning or when they see you. They don’t dismiss you and make a point of being the boss and how you have to say hello to them.
  6. They are not out for themselves and will never throw you under the bus and blame a mess up or mistake on you. They value you more than looking good to a client. They say “we” instead of “I”.
  7. They acknowledge and accept the buck stops with them. They accept responsibility when things go wrong. They are the boss and they know this. They never try and shift blame or ‘save’ their skin. Whose skin are they saving anyway? No employee or boss should be out for themselves. Work is not a competition. Work is meant to be a collaborative effort.
  8. A good boss won't make you feel bad for messing up. They don’t make a big deal of your mistakes. They let you know it was ok to make mistakes because it is! We are all human. They make mistakes too. Unless you were deliberately negligent or intentionally sabotaged your employee’s business then you don’t deserve to be shouted at.
  9. They value you and make it known. In small ways. They say thank you when you work late or on weekends. And they say thank you regularly for your hard work. It is recognised and valued.
  10. They support you in your work and give you what you need to get the job done properly. They want you to thrive so they give the best tools to do that.

In the End…

A good boss is good for business. Employees that love coming to work are infinitely better at their jobs than employees who hate work. An employee who hates their boss will dread coming to work, they will do the bare minimum and never go the extra mile. An employee that loves coming to work and likes their boss, and feels valued and appreciated will work hard. I have not had many good bosses and I think they are rare and hard to come by. I think more bosses need to be attuned their employees' needs.

I am a Lawyer, Writer, Reader and Traveller. From Johannesburg, South Africa. I am writing to find my voice. Fortune favours the brave.

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