World Class Supply Chain

Your Biggest Career Challenge …The a**hole boss

Great Dane HARLEQUINI usually write about World Class Supply Chains and SAP.  But how can you have a World Class Supply Chain in a company over run by idiocy?  Not only will despicable bosses adversely affect your companies supply chain, they may also set back your career.  I think having an a**hole boss enter your life is the your biggest career challenge.

And, let’s be clear. There is a world of difference between a tough boss and an a**holeboss. Tough bosses genuinely care for their employee’s careers and WANT them to succeed. Read the book – Superbosses – How Exceptional Leaders Master the Flow of Talent – to learn more about exceptional bosses. A**holebosses ultimately only care about their own agendas and will manipulate everyone around them and be condescending at the same time.

Even countries are ruled by assholes.  The Arab Spring uprising started when the Tunisian Dictator that ruled for 23 years, stole billions of dollars and now his brother in law has recently fled Canada (the day before he was to appear in court) and he is accused of stealing billions as well. A former Chinese president has taken billions out of the country before stepping down. What will the four star generals at the pentagon whisper under their breath if Donald Trump walks in the room as their Commander and Chief?   See? The world is full of them. And one might enter your career.

Hey …I’m usually an optimistic guy, looking at the glass as always half full. I like to start the day on a positive note and for the most part I’ve been able to do just that.  The 2 times in my long career I have lost plenty of optimism is when a jerk for a boss entered my career. They turned out to be arrogant bullies who demoralized and poisoned the entire the department. They were blind to their stupidity and lasted a maximum of 2 years before either getting fired or leaving.

Everybody will probably have an a**holeboss at one point. Whether you are a Director or senior VP, don’t think for a moment you will dodge the a**holebullet. And he (or she) will vulture over you 8 hours a day, 40 hours a week.

Some A**holetraits are:

  • Constantly using back handed insults
  • Publicly Humiliating employees
  • Constant Rude interruptions
  • Extreme Micromanagement over everything
  • Brown nosing the executives while ignoring their employees

The good news is that there ARE a few companies that instill a zero jerk policy. Google and JetBlue are a few examples.

The best example is The Four Seasons Hotel chain.

In the book – Opposable Mind. Winning Through Integrative Thinking – the author highlights a luxury hotel chain that has thrown out all assholes. Founder Isadore Sharp has kept the Four Seasons Hotel on Fortune magazine’s list of the “Top 100 Companies to Work For” every year since 1998. That’s eighteen years in a row. Pretty impressive …right?

His Golden Rule? – Deal with others as we would want them to deal with us.

This rule wasn’t just a line written in a dusty company guideline. Sharp enforced the rule by getting rid of all the a**holebosses in the organization. Sharp also upgraded employee’s facilities whenever a hotel was upgraded, got rid of special parking or cafeterias for executives, but at the same time pushed responsibility down, promoted self-discipline, high performance accountability and most of all generated trust.

With an a**holeboss running amok, trust is the first thing out the door. So what happened after Sharp shovelled the rude and egotistical bosses out the door?

Sharp now has seventy three luxury hotels in thirty-one companies with twenty five in construction. Four Seasons is by far the largest luxury hotel chain in the world.

What do you do with an A**holeboss? Most importantly don’t take things too personally, it’s most likely he treats all employees with condescension except for his own boss and a few friends. Learn to ignore his kneejerk decisions and ride it out. He will be gone soon!

Make sure you get your severance package. Don’t just get up and quit. Find out if the company is offering severance packages. Ride it out until you get one.

If your health is affected go on medical leave. A**holebosses are in your life for 8 hours a day and can do serious damage to your health. The stress of dealing with their brainless decisions and manipulations can be toxic to your health. Your health comes first.

Punch a pillow daily. I know you want to punch the new boss right in the mouth but security camera keep getting in the way! It’s better to take your frustrations on a pillow than have an assault charge.

My point is that an a**holeboss is the worst thing that can happen to your career path and you will have to make some big decisions on how to deal with it.

What’s the golden rule? Repeat after me.

Deal with others as we would want them to deal with us.

Terry Vermeylen is hell bent on rapidly transforming your business into a World Class Operation by major transformation or by eliminating one bad habit at a time.

Terry Vermeylen brings 30+ years of experience in SAP and Supply Chain Process improvement. As an SAP professional and Supply Chain Architect he has worked and consulted for some of the world’s largest and most successful manufacturing companies focusing primarily on the Aerospace and Pharmaceutical industries.

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1 Comment

  1. Terry, this is a great article. And great ideas on dealing with those difficult people.


    John H

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