Horrible Bosses: What Your Type Is?

I am highly against trashing people no mater what. On other hand I support constructive criticism with a spoon of attitude to spike life up. Corporate world similarly to housewives on the playground is soaked in gossiping. Humans naturally love expressing their feelings to others about others. Although not many of us do it, a lot want to.

Today I want to chat about different types of bosses / managers (whatever you call your superiors and mentors) making it clear I don’t want to trash or worship anyone, I want to have a look into what kind of people get to the top and how that affects the middle and the bottom.

Do you remember Horrible Bosses movie if you’ve ever seen it?

If you havn’t, feel free to Google it and maybe watch if you have spare couple of hours. It is a relaxing typical American style comedy about three friends employed by three different horrible bosses. So the guys one day decide that killing them would be a great idea. Hilariously stupid! Sadly, based on real life very often. Horrible bosses screened:

Psycho Boss: Learn About Psychopathy

One of the bosses in the movie is a psychopath who is violent, suspicious and unreasonable. Psychopathy (the word I always struggle to spell lol) is defined as either an aspect of personality or as a personality disorder, characterised partly by enduring antisocial behavior, a diminished capacity for empathy or remorse, and poor behavioral controls. I have definitely seen couple of people with such ‘characteristic’ and noticed that this ‘personality disorder’ often takes different levels. I am not sure, scientifically, if its possible or must be classified as not psycho, however I am sure that even psychopaths can maintain kind face till the anti-social behavior is triggered. Just an angry boss or even a screaming boss doesn’t mean he / she is a psycho, some people have no manners or have short temper or simp0ly stubborn but not necessarily psychopaths although I am sure they exhibit many of the ‘symptoms’.

Psychopaths or also called sociopaths are fascinating, scientifically speaking. I’ve watched several documentaries about psychopath murderers and rapists studying their behavioral patterns and brain activity based on factual findings available nowadays. Interestingly, violent people with no remorse have slightly different brain which gives them this: ‘aspect of personality or as a personality disorder, characterized partly by enduring antisocial behavior’, mentioned earlier.  They have weak conditioning to painful stimuli and poor learning of avoiding responses that causes punishment – this is why prison never ‘straightens’ them up, in my opinion. To be more technical, psychos show less activation in the amygdala, ventromedial prefrontal cortex, lateral orbitofrontal cortex, and periaqueductal gray brain regions. In one of the series of the documentary Secrets of The Human Brain I’ve discovered that psychopath’s respond to gruesome images is very slow or none because of the weak connection between the neurons and a smaller size of limbic system which is our center of emotions.

Who ever chooses morals or feelings over ‘dead bodies’ (a figure of speech) looses in a career chase with a psychopath. Here is another curious fact: a psychopath’s frontal lobe experiences much less activities rather than a so to say normal person. They know like anybody else what is Right and what is Wrong but they don’t feel anything about it. You know when somebody is treated unfair sometimes you might feel yucky inside (or at least I do) or when you see a sick puppy your heart rate elevates and you are rushing to help a little creature… Well, psychopaths literally don’t feel any of that. It is not that they are blocking their feelings or hiding them, they physically do not have them.

I am fascinated by psychopaths’ brain; however of course they give me shivers. If you happened to work with a psychopath, my advice – run! However if you think your top management is going through some rough patch and being a little too personal give it another half a year and see how you go. I don’t believe in mixing personal with work but surprisingly a lot of people do, it is easy to do so. Learn more about psychopaths, detect them early and just watch out.

Man-eater Boss: What Persistent Sexual Arousment Syndrome Is? 

An other boss character is a nymphomaniac lady who keeps trying to have sex with her engaged to his fiance employee. Hypersexuality is extremely frequent or suddenly increased sexual urges or sexual activity. Although hypersexuality can be caused by some medical conditions or medications, in most cases the cause is unknown. Mental health problems such as bipolar disorders can give rise to hypersexuality, and alcohol and some drugs can affect social and sexual inhibitions in some people. Unfortunately (scientifically speaking) I have never met a person like that, I think. They say orgasm is an addictive and annoying goal for some females and often a nightmare.

Although in a movie it is a hot and skinny boss who is hunting her employee, in reality hypersexuality is not about pleasure or being sexy and every men’s dream. In fact, being aroused all the time simply causes pain and frustration. Persistent sexual arousment syndrome is what I am talking about here.

Women are often blamed for using their sexuality to get things they want such as promotion, expensive items or a club entry. It does not mean though that they are nymphomaniac. Yes women wear short skirts and push up bras and flirt often, it does not mean they actually want to have sex. I mean wouldn’t men want that (giggling)!? Sorry guys, although as we know for most men sex is just as simple and important as breathing, for ladies it is a whole different story.

I guess another reason I never met an nymphomaniac female is because all my bosses in my life were males so far as well as most of my friends. According to the documentary I watched about this not so sexy syndrome, women do not become men-eaters like its portrayed in the movie , they seek medical help instead. Surprisingly, most of the doctors actually don’t even know that such problem exists…  So no sexy bosses running around giving themselves away to all men in a office, it is in fact is a problem and looks like has been glorified by Hollywood as always.

Tool Boss

Well, I am sure many people will agree that tool is either a combination of many disorders or just an unhappy person trying his / her hardest to make others feel same way so he / she is not alone in their misery. I don’t want to speculate much about it because I simply don’t care, sorry.

Apart from these three characters in the movie, there are several types of bosses you might have met or about to. Well, although there are so many different lists of boss’s types I decided to squeeze the information I found and compose my own list.

  1. An intimidating boss is a no-nonsense boss, aggressive by nature, and tries to get things done by issuing commands. This type will always find mistakes & errors even if they are not there. Intimidating boss is often about perfection and power. Interestingly, the best way to handle such boss is to respect him / her – you might even get under his skin and befriend the beast.
  2. Inspirational boss is really a leader! Within the course of my business degree I’ve done some subjects covering topics of management and leadership. Inspirational leader is one of the types of leadership outlined in many textbooks and mentioned by a number of lecturers. This is the type of management I am sure many would want to have. Inspirational leader doesn’t order or command but inspires everyone to follow him / her. Action by example is what inspiration is.
  3. The Mystery boss is the one who is always “out of office”, “attending a meeting” or “away for a work conference”. I bumped into this type accidentally and decided to add to my selection. I have never really worked with such kind; however I’ve noticed that people exhibit a certain degree of that. A boss who does not want to be involved in every day office routine or trouble himself / herself with work matters is often partially a mystery boss.
  4. The viper is the type I found when was trying to put my experience in words. A grumpy, upset and disappointed boss allowing snippet personal comments is dead right a stressful type of person. No matter how thick your skin is one day viper will get through. I must ad that this type is also in combination with something else as I’ve noticed it. I don’t believe in people’s purity of one kind, it is most likely a combination of several characteristics.
  5. Energizer bunny is a rare type of management / bosses I’ve ever encountered. Personally I’ve only met one in my life, I think. This type is unstoppable trooper who just keeps going no matter what. He / she loves working late every night and getting up early the next day to be the first one at work typing reports away. They often send work-related e-mails on weekends at 3 a.m. (marked URGENT), and always arriving at the office despite the snowstorm/transit strike/earthquake/appendix operation – whether it’s Thanksgiving, Christmas Day, or New Year’s Eve.
  6.  Office bully boss is a common type unfortunately. It is not necessarily your boss but can be a manager or anyone mentoring you. This type is similar to a previously mentioned Tool but is actually gains pleasure if you struggles. I personally believe that bullies often suffer from some sort of mental or personality disorder and require medical help, not a pay rise.
  7. Miracle boss is someone we all want to work with. Supportive understanding but firm type of leader who keeps her / his word and pushes employees to their limits to perform not quit. If you got one be the best employee you can to pay back. Your boss will appreciate it too.

I believe it is helpful to identify your management as early as possible in order to build your strategy. People are different and sometimes they are two faced which makes it even harder to read. However business world isn’t going to wait till you make your decision about a person. Teaching yourself how to read people and choosing appropriate behavior can save you a career and nerves’ health.

Please share your insight: what type of bosses you met, how do you deal with them and what are your tips on reading people?! 


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