An Invitation To the “Manager From Hell” Series

8 Sep

Those of you who have read Beyond Luck know that the first article describes the “manager from hell.”  I have been impressed by how many people I have worked with either changed jobs, made a career change, started a company or in some way altered their work-lives because they had such a manager.  I left an organization I loved and thought I would always be at because of such a boss.  So, I invite you to send me no more than 300 words on your manger from hell and I will publish them.  Perhaps we can learn from these stories. Here is a pump primer.

“In a large public sector organization, my unit was transferred to a new manager because of a legislative mandate.  The eight of us had been together some time and had a fine culture.  We begin to notice almost immediately that the place was very quiet and people came and went exactly on time.  With some grant money we decided to re-model our work-space.  We worked with the organization’s architect and building department and put together a detailed several-page plan.  I presented it to our new manager, he rejected it out of hand and began to make war on us.  After some time we understood that he was the giant and the rest of us were pygmies – the ultimate micro-manager.  The most curious result of this management style was the bathrooms, it was a former hospital and all were single-stools, were always in use.  It took some time to realize people were hiding out, it was the only place people were safe because the door was locked. We never saw this manager being abusive, but the level of fear was very high.  When people realized we were on his hit list they pretty much stayed away from us. Going to work in the morning was unpleasant and our productivity crashed.  Within 18 months all of us were gone and the program collapsed.  The silver lining was I started my business.  Other of my former colleagues did not fare so well.”

Tell us your “manager from hell” story.

Send your stories to my email,, titled “hell” and I will assure they are posted anonymously.

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