Bosses come in multiple shapes, sizes, and attitudes. As a HR outsourcing agency, we deal with various kinds of bosses and employees on a daily basis. We believe that each type of boss can bring different strengths to an organization. With that in mind, which of these 4 kinds of bosses are you?
1. The Ghost Boss
Like all unseen entities, ghost bosses can be as equally terrifying. This is the boss that stalks you online and only replies when he feels like it. Despite being an unseen character, the ghost boss’ presence can always be felt. And that’s precisely what keeps you working. The ghost boss can be tough for employees who require a little bit more direction and supervision (think: newer employees).
If you’re a ghost boss, below are some ways you can improve your leadership style!
Identify those who need help: There is no such thing as a perfect employee. There are only trained employees and untrained employees. As a leader, it is your duty to identify the different weaknesses your employees have and give them the guidance to get better!
Schedule time: Ghost bosses are just bosses that are always on the go. Keep in mind that as a leader, you might need to sacrifice a little of your work-time to guide and mentor the rest of the team.
Be present: When you do have time to be in the office. Make small talk and get to know your teammates. Be present in both their professional and personal lives.
The ghost boss might have employees wishing that they’re able to see their bosses more. But the micromanager has the opposite effect on its employees. Employees dealing with a micromanaging boss, wish that they’d disappear. Just for a little breathing space! On the surface, micromanagement might seem like an effective way of managing people. However, there are some detriments to this leadership style.
If you’re a micromanager, here are some ways to improve your leadership style!
Let go of the idea of perfection: Leaders who micromanage often do so out of the fear of failure. Letting go of the idea of having to be perfect might result in less micromanagement.
Learn how to delegate: Bosses who have trouble delegating and assigning the right tasks to various employees. Don’t forget that once you’re done delegating, to let your employees do the actual work. Try not to hover over them or repeat the different steps it takes to finish the task!
Set expectations: It is hard to let go of certain expectations when you have a specific goal in mind. Following this analogy, the best way for your employees to perform an assignment that satisfies you is by setting clear expectations with them.
Some employees of micromanaging leaders might find their bosses to be lacking in empathy. Learn more about being a more empathetic leader in this article!
3. The Doting Mom!
She wants you to do your best. These are the bosses that go out of their way to teach you the different skills you’ll need to complete your job correctly. Motherly bosses are nurturing and often go out of their way to make their team feel comfortable and content. Everyone loves the office mom.
Women in positions of leadership often take on the role of doting mothers. However, being the office mom can also be detrimental. Research shows that bosses who take on the role of a doting mother often reinforce toxic boss-employee relationships. This is partly because this leadership style mimics a negative parenting pattern (a.k.a. the Verbose parent).
If you’re a boss who self-identifies as a doting mother. Below are some tips to help you overcome the desire to be a doting mom at work:
Learn to let go: The nurturing boss caters to every whim and fancies of their team. Basically, there is a need to let go of the desire to cater to your employees. Some tasks that the office mom can be seen doing include buying coffee for the team, or restocking the milk and snacks in the pantry. Indulging in occasional treats is not a bad thing. However, do try to limit unnecessary expenditure and reckless indulgence.
Be more distant: if a ghost boss needs to foster closeness with their employees. A doting boss will need to be more distant with theirs. A simple way to do so is to avoid discussing personal matters and relationships in great depth. Limit the amount of personal information your employees can access from you.
The doting and motherly boss is a trait often found in women assuming leadership positions. Learn more about the motherly boss in this article.
4. The “Yes” Man
Are you someone who jumps at challenges and assignments? Do you unconsciously do this without consulting the rest of your team? You might be what the employees refer to as a “yes” man. Some websites might refer to these kinds of bosses as pushovers. However, we see otherwise. The “yes” man is usually a new boss eager to fulfill their duty as part of the leadership team. It is the lack of experience that makes the “yes” man say...well, say yes. They are eager to please and prove that they deserve their new position.
The boss who says yes to any new tasks and challenges might seem endearing to some. But the truth is that these bosses are headed for the dreaded job burnout.
If you self-identify as a “yes” man (boss or otherwise), here are some tips to help you improve your leadership style!
Pick your battles wisely: As a leader, you’ll need to learn to accept and delegate tasks accordingly. One way to decide which of the many assignments you should tackle first is by selecting high priority tasks first. Pick your battles wisely. Investing the wrong energy into a low priority assignment will just bring you closer to burnout.
Track your due dates: Really want to jump onto an assignment but worried you might not be able to juggle the different tasks? The simple solution is to start jotting down your various assignment’s start and due dates. Some free tools to help you with that include Google Calendar and Evernote.
Click here for an extensive list of free HR productivity tools.
Which of these 4 common types of bosses do you identify with? Share your thoughts with us in the comments section below! *This article first appeared on BGC Singapore under the title, "Which of These 4 Kinds of Bosses are You? Check your blindspots!".