Sometimes a pictures says it all. The corner of Progress Boulevard:
1. Implied Threats – Nothing gets them to work faster than veiled threats of disciplinary action. Here is a role play:
Employee: Boy howdy, I sure do love this Angry Birds.
Manager: It’d be a shame if someone’s house were burnt down because there were no complete spreadsheets.
Employee: You got it boss! I sure do love my record collection more than Angry Birds. It’d be a shame if they melted in the fire.
Manager: That’s right. And it doesn’t matter to me if your family is inside the house.
Employee: Jeepers, I had no idea my boss was such a wacko.
Manager: Only to dead beat layabouts.
Employee: You don’t have to worry about me. I am doing those spreadsheets right now.
Manager: Great, I’ll put the home made napalm away.
2. Give unachievable goals or deadlines – Staff work harder when they have a task they can never do. If they can only manufacture twenty items in a day, tell them the minimum is forty. Workers strive for excellence when you overwork them and they push even harder when you underpay them because now they have a goal to reach. Role play:
Manager: I would like all 5,000 pages due tomorrow.
Employee: Jeepers! I can only do 1 page an hour!
Manager: The only person holding yourself back is you.
Employee: I better get started! I really need to get a salary increase somehow.
Manager: Don’t count on it. But if deluding yourself helps….
Employee: It sure does! I’ve often wondered what I would do with all the money, sex, and power.
Manager: Not all of us are cut out for upper management kid.
3. Micromanagement- Your workforce is sort of a misnomer. Employees want to do anything but work. How do you think YouTube became so popular? The only real way to ensure that people work is standing over their shoulder.
Manager: You done yet?
Manager: You done yet?
Manager: You done yet?
Manager: Umbers! You missed a capital letter! Busted!
4. Not Following Up – Employees work twice as hard when they work their ass off for something and you pretend like you didn’t notice. It’s like that annoying kid who followed you around in high school. He did all this stuff to get your attention, wore your same clothes, hats, he even bought a guitar when you did. You did your best to ignore him but he only tried harder. It works with employees too.
Employee: So about that 5,000 page spreadsheet I did for you the other day… Did you have a chance to look at it?
Manager: Don’t you knock? I was sexting with this hot girl I met on the internet.
Employee: Are sure it’s a girl?
Manager: That’s half the fun! It could be an 80-year-old man, my wife, or even my own daughter!
Employee: You’re sick.
Manager: You don’t rise through the ranks of a genetically modified food company that pressures small farmers out of business for nothing.
5. Public criticism – One of the best ways to really get the best work out your employee is humiliation. They work twice as hard when they know people will laugh at them. Feel free to add ethnic jokes because it will really get your audience rolling on the floor.
Manager: Look at this spreadsheet! My third-grader can do better math than this. Some asshole turned this piece of shit in and expected me to accept it? Congratulations that asshole is you.
All the other employees laugh.
Employee: I tried my best.
Manager: Well your best isn’t good enough. I wanted 5,000 pages. Not a turd gift basket. I thought you Germans were good at math!
All the other employees laugh harder.
Employee: My grandfather was German.
Manager: I guess your grandfather must have hit his head when he fell out of the guard tower!
All the other employees laugh even harder.
Another Employee One: That’s funny because he’s calling his grandfather a Nazi.
Another Employee Two: Shut up Ted.
Manager: Go cry to your momma boy! I will end you!
Employee: I really learned that I should try harder. After all, I was only victimized because I set myself up to be a victim. If I worked harder on that 5,000 page spreadsheet, I would not have been publicly humiliated. Victims are really the ones responsible.
Manager: That’s right. Suck it bitch!
6. Not explaining your actions or sharing company data – A good way to keep employees on the right path is by not sharing information. Employees really respond to not knowing how they fit in the bigger picture. You also don’t want them asking questions.
Employee: So boss, can I see some of the accounting data so I can make my spreadsheet better?
Employee: But I noticed part of the budget problem was due to a million dollar error in…
Manager: You are asking too many questions. If I want to embezzle one million a year for hookers and blow, than that’s my choice. You are really invading my privacy when you ask for company records.
Employee: Jeepers boss, I didn’t know you could charge hookers and blow to your expense account.
Manager: It’s part of the Per Diem. I’ve got to attract new clients somehow. Don’t you watch Madmen?
7. Not honoring creative thinking and problem solving – Underlings will always tell you how to do your job. Don’t let them. You are the boss. You have way more experience than your employees. Try to lord that over them. Make sure you present their ideas as your own. They’ll appreciate helping out someone they deeply respect like you.
Employee: Boss! Boss! I figured out how to make your hookers and blow money look like a company expense. If we over budget the cost of everything, the excess is not only one but two million dollars!
Manager: You snot nosed punk. Don’t tell me how to run this! It will never work. Fuck off.
Next board meeting:
Manager: Gentlemen, I have the answer you’ve been looking for! I’ve figured out how to double our hooker and blow budget and expense it to the company!
8. Failing to provide praise – Once again, remember how ignoring people only makes them like you better. People will really look for your attention if you pretend they don’t exist. It seems to work for teenage boys and girls.
Close up on manager’s face.
Manager: The board was so pleased with my idea, they tripled my salary!
Zoom out to reveal manager tied to a chair. Employee is wild eyed and sharpening a large knife.
Employee: Your idea? Your IDEA?
Teenage Boy: This is stupid. I hate going to these stupid trainings. Who are you?
Teenage Girl: I’m your girlfriend.
Teenage Boy: So your that chick I see when I’m bored.
Teenage Girl: I know beneath your rugged exterior you’ll change, so I keep punishing myself with an asshole like you.
Manager: High-five buddy! You totally can do her whenever you want!
Teenage Boy: Yeah, bro! It’s awesome.
Teenage Girl: Can I borrow your knife?
Employee: I’ll tie him down.