Alchemical Thoughts

On bad bosses, part 3

Posted on: November 6, 2009

Once again, I have put aside enough posts on the topic of bad bosses to make a post about it. These are mostly food for thought. I am sure someone could write some substantial post on bad bosses as they related to libraries and library administration, but I personally don't feel like doing it at the moment. A common theme in some of these posts seems to be what can we learn from those bad bosses.

  • Lifehacker asks "How Do You Deal with a Bad Boss?" It is an invitation to their readers to comment, but it is also discussing a bit about entitled Working for You Isn't Working for Me. The book may be something to consider reading at some point. A key point here is knowing what it is about your boss that irks or bothers you, then find a way to cope, or as I say, decompress after work. 
  • The Effing Librarian tells us to "Prepare for the Scottish Librarian Invasion." It deals with a story of certain library administrators basically deprofessionalizing their staff and a few other boneheaded things administrators tend to do that demoralize their workers. A must read. Effing Librarian also has a short one on why he is a bad librarian. This was one I could identify with, and it has been something I have been wanting to write about. Maybe it goes back the idea I have seen in some circles where, if a librarian expresses little to no interest in a "leadership" position (read: management) due to having bad experiences with management, then he must have a bad attitude. I have pondered a bit of that before, but not sure what else to do with it.
  • Bob Sutton, one of my favorites on this topic, asks "Do You Learn More From Working for a Bad Boss than a Good Boss?" He is making the point that bad bosses force you to learn about situations and yourself. After all, when the boss is good and all is well, you are not really as reflective. This may be worth some thought. Mr. Sutton also raises a very good question, which I think would make a nice writing prompt for me one of these days: "What is the most important thing you ever learned NOT TO DO from working for a bad boss?"
  • I saved this piece not so much for anything deep but because it has a draft memo for when you have to convince your boss to let you go to a conference. (via The Liminal Librarian). Then again, if you have to convince your boss why your professional development is important, how it will better serve the organization, and how it is an investment in you as an asset to the organization, then you may have bigger problems.

And for the random reader who may be interested, here are Part 1 and Part 2 of this rambling series.

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