Killer Bosses and Employee Well-Being

Stories abound regarding “killer bosses” — leaders who are categorically feared. Popular television shows such as The Office and cartoons like Dilbert dramatize the perils of such ineptitude and insensitivity, and paint a troublesome portrait of what work within these types of organizations is like for employees. Unfortunately, these situations aren’t reserved for television entertainment; they can also be found in daily workplaces. Being aware of how the quality of leadership is affecting us is essential to our professional and personal well-being.

Impact on performance

Recent research conducted by, in partnership with Development Dimensions International, a talent management consulting company, found that most employees spend 10 or more hours of work time per month complaining, or listening to others complain, about bad boss behaviour. Almost one-third of employees spend 20 hours or more per month on this activity. With work time being spent complaining about leadership, workplace morale and productivity invariably suffers.

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Craig Dowden

Written By

Craig Dowden & Associates is a firm focused on supporting clients in achieving leadership and organizational excellence by leveraging the science of peak performance. He is author of Do Good to Lead Well: The Science and Practice of Positive Leadership.


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