According to an article in the Daily Record last week, managers called Steve and Debbie have been named as Britain's bosses from hell. A poll of 4000 people put John and Catherine in second and Alan and Anne in third place. Staff said they were the most challenging people to work for.
In short, the worst male boss names were: 1.Steve 2.John 3.Alan 4.Paul 5.Chris 6.David 7.Mike 8.Simon 9.Barry 10.Andy.
And the worst women's names were: 1. Debbie 2. Catherine 3. Anne 4. Linda 5. Jane 6. Liz 7. Fiona 8. Andrea 9. Pam 10. Michelle.
Although it’s obviously not set in stone that people blessed with these names would be a nightmare to work with, it’s a bit of fun and provokes some interesting stories when discussed in a group. I personally don’t have any experience of bad boss’s with those names. We have a Jane in the office here and she’s great to work with – we love you Jane. If you have any stories feel free to share, although there would be little point trying to omit the name of your boss for anonymity – share anyway.
The article also told of researcher’s who exposed horror stories of employees being asked to carry out tasks that were definitely not noted in their job spec when they joined. Among them was a female boss who insisted her toenails were cut while she made an important conference call. Another spoke of their David Brent-like boss who threatened disciplinary action if staff didn't turn up to monthly karaoke nights.
I know that I wouldn’t complain about the latter if it was a paid outing but on a more serious note it’s worrying that there are many people suffering in their jobs and they don’t have an outlet for their woes except anonymous surveys. I’m sure there are many technically illegal tasks and treatment people endure in the workplace that goes unreported, especially with the economic downturn and people’s fears of redundancy and job loss.
No one wants to challenge or question unfair treatment generally as it can lead to bad feeling and in some cases a more serious personal vendetta from employers. I think it is an issue that needs to be given more time – it’s all well and good having legislation and laws surrounding health and safety and working time regulations, etc but are these truly implemented in all businesses today and are there ways that the unfairly treated can really change things without the risk of unemployment or being branded a ‘snitch’? I’m open to opinions…