My Boss Is a Nightmare! Stories of Terrible Management Techniques

nightmare boss In this era of high unemployment, it is amazing that there are still terrible bosses out there, people who treat their employees like they are bugs to be squashed.

How do these people keep their jobs when their training and management techniques are so awful? That's a mystery that is hard to solve, but one thing is certain: The following tales of nightmare bosses will probably make you believe that your boss isn't so bad after all.


The spoiled mommy boss

The worst boss I ever had was a very pretty and very pregnant blonde named "Ashley." I was 23, in my last year of college, and desperately in need of some extra cash, so I decided taking on a nanny gig would be a smart idea. Little did I know, this innocent part-time job was about to take over my entire life. Ashley was a stay-at-home mom in the truest sense of the term. What I mean by this is that she slept in late every morning, got up and changed into pearls and an expensive jogging suit and then spent the day painting her nails, watching daytime television and going to the gym for a pregnancy aerobics class.

The only snag in her perfect life was that she had a 10-month-old baby, so she took me on as a nanny/mommy's helper. The job, as she described it, was simple. I arrived at 5:45AM, got the baby up for the day and then hung out with her and fed her while her mommy did her own thing. Ashley assured me that working around my hectic college schedule was no problem, and since she had graduated from my rigorous college herself, I believed her. Silly me.

The first week went according to plan. I arrived on time and played with the baby until I had a class to go to. The baby was great, one of those cuddly, happy types, and I adored her. However, I wasn't really sure why Ashley needed me. Granted, she was pregnant and small tasks like carrying the baby up and down the stairs were difficult, but Ashley didn't do much of anything when it came to caring for her child. I would fawn over every cute thing the baby did, and if Ashley happened to be in the room, she'd just kind of nod and go back to watching 'The View' or eating her bagel (this woman lived on bagels; the entire six months I worked for her, I never saw her eat anything else).

Slowly, Ashley's demands started to add up. First, she asked me to wash some bottles while the baby napped. "Sure," I said. "No problem." Then it was vacuuming. Then starting dinner for her husband. Eventually, this spiraled into cleaning the entire house and doing all the laundry. Now, I would have been fine with all this, if I wasn't being paid a measly $8 an hour. To top it off, she started asking me to run errands for her when I wasn't at work. I didn't mind picking up a box of formula, but within a couple of weeks, I was doing the grocery shopping for the entire family. You wouldn't believe how many packages of bagels I purchased!

Finally, I had to call it quits when she started randomly not needing me for a particular day. Even when she said she didn't need me, she would often call and change her mind, and my work schedule just got way too unpredictable. Plus, my grades were starting to slip. I'd been hanging on, because I really needed the meager cash, and because I loved the baby. When I told Ashley I was quitting, she stayed true to form and hung up on me. I haven't spoken to her since, but my only regret is never getting to see the baby again. It's OK, though -- she probably turned out just like her mother.

– Susie Potter




My Boss Is a Nightmare The commission-stealing boss

My name is Jenny, I am 25 years old and have worked for Piercing Pagoda, a Zales Inc. jewelry store, for the past two years.

To say that my boss was unpleasant would be a gross understatement. I have never in my life encountered a person more self-serving and rude as this woman that I will call "Katie." Katie is a 50-year-old woman who acts like an immature teenager when things don't go her way. For two years she pawned off all of her responsibilities on me and another co-worker. Our store had approximately 3,000 pieces of jewelry. Every Monday we had to count every single piece. This was the manager's responsibility, but she would constantly make me do it and then take credit for my work. She was the queen of taking credit for anything good that happened in that store.

Every day each associate is given a "plan," the amount of money they are supposed to bring in on their shift. Katie was a master of stealing customers from her employees in order to make sure she made her plan quota every day. She would often interrupt me while I had a customer, send me to go do some menial task and end up taking my sale.

Even more underhanded, she would even steal our long-term customers. Customers are allowed to put their purchases on layaway and when the customer finally picks up their layaway, the sale counts toward the goal of the person who originally helped the customer and set up his or her layaway plan. If a customer came in to pay off their layaway item while Katie was there, however, she would cancel the layaway and put it under her own name. That meant the credit for the sale would go to her instead of the associate who actually helped the customer.

Is your boss a nightmare?
Yes2397 (72.3%)
No918 (27.7%)

"Tattling" on Katie and getting her into trouble was often more trouble than it was worth. On one of the occasions that I ratted her out, she gave me the silent treatment for a week. For seven full days she would not speak to me and wore her sunglasses at work so that we would not even make eye contact. Ridiculous events like this would occur quite frequently. And she was the boss!

Along with this she would frequently make rude comments to all of us that worked under her. She told me on several occasions never to come to work without makeup on because I was ugly without it. She also made a comment to another associate saying she didn't have a large chest, she just had a fat gut to hold it up that made it appear bigger. She would make derogatory comments about customers, mimic different languages and use racial slurs. On several occasions she approached African-American men and started a conversation with, "Yo Brotha, you want some bling-bling?"

I have honestly never met a more disrespectful human being. We tried to mutiny several times, but unfortunately as long as the store was meeting its financial obligations, the corporate bigwigs didn't care how the store was run. So instead, I became the ninth person in two years to quit and escape Katie's terrible, selfish management.

Best decision of my life.

– Jenny Falk




nightmare boss The screaming boss

An artist by profession, I decided starving was no longer an option and took a job working for an art dealer. I loved my job. Honestly loved the work. I restored documents, prepared art for auction and cataloged giant volumes of prints. In order to succeed though, I had to endure a 'Devil Wears Prada' meets 'Scrooge' boss of the worst kind. Since I was his only full-time employee, the brunt of his manic behavior fell on my shoulders.

There were several incidents that should have sent me running. Hearing him scream at utility workers, vendors and the postal service should have been a clue to his emotional imbalance. His tirades would last for hours when a document was misplaced or a package didn't arrive when expected. There was no real reason for my staying, considering that the pay was only so-so in exchange for the amount of special projects and irrational deadlines that had me burning the candle at both ends to meet deadlines. I'm still not sure why I worked for him as long as I did.

For example, Christmas was a major inconvenience. My request to stay home on both Dec. 24 and 25 was met with an eerie calm. And then, in one of his trademark moves, he set an unattainable deadline, a task due on Dec. 27. A task that could only be accomplished if I worked at home through Christmas. His excitement over the project and the promise of a big bonus carried me through, pulling all-nighters in order to both celebrate the holiday with my family and meet the deadline. In the end, the big bonus turned out to be a mere $25, and the immovable deadline I worked all night to meet was then extended a month, because he felt the market wasn't ready for the scope of the project.

As if that wasn't bad enough, my grandmother passed away that March. She helped raise me as a little girl and her sudden death was devastating. I took two days off to travel to the funeral. Alone in the car, I tried to process my emotions but was interrupted several times by frantic phone calls from my boss. He could not find a document and, apparently, I was to blame. With each call his anger was escalating. I could feel the venom oozing through my cell phone. By the time I arrived at the funeral home he was screaming in my ear. I set the phone on silent and ignored his constant calls through the service and gathering. When the phone calls stopped, I assumed I was fired. But, when I hesitantly checked messages later, it became clear I was still employed. The first few messages were the same escalating tirade only to be followed by a strangely short and calm one, "I found it in the bin on my desk." That would be the very same bin where I told him the document was placed no less than nine hours earlier.

Why I didn't leave at that moment, I cannot explain. Nor does it make any sense that I continued to work for the man when he shorted my pay or called me lazy when my family came down with the flu and I missed an afternoon of work. This same boss drove a portfolio of work to me while my son was in the hospital, since (of course) I was just sitting around. There was no end to his invasion into my life. He worked 24/7 and expected me to do the same. I prided myself on my ability to stay calm in the midst of a storm, on my work ethic and loved the chance the job gave me to work partially from home. In the end, the economy was my ticket out. When the market tanked, he told me he could handle it on his own and I was free.

– S. Colette



The take-your-money-and-spend-it boss

Tales of bad bosses are everywhere. From the ambitious corporate climber who takes credit for your accomplishments to the "Peter Principle" manager who has reached his level of incompetence, terrible bosses are easy to find in most organizations. In my opinion, among the worst practitioners of poor management technique are small-business owners who see their business as a personal fiefdom, and their employees as serfs rather than assets. Welcome to my nightmare.

At age 54, I have worked for both international mega-corporations and small family-owned businesses. For the past 10 years I have been employed by a small company that sells, installs and services diagnostic imaging equipment to hospitals and doctors. My company employs 14 disgruntled people and two owner/partners. I'll call them Ron and Edward.

My father, who was a small-business owner with a shop full of loyal employees, credited his successful employee relations to his personal philosophy of never asking employees to do something he was not willing to do himself. Concepts such as this have never occurred to Ron and Edward.

Like many other businesses, our company was adversely affected by the overall economic malaise afflicting the United States in the last few years. Unfortunately, the owners of our business did not attempt to streamline operations to eliminate waste and unnecessary expenses. Their chosen course of action was to hold a meeting where they bemoaned the dire financial condition of the company and explained how we all needed to sacrifice if the company were to survive. Employees would be subject to a 20 percent pay cut or face layoffs. Given the double-digit unemployment rate and anemic job market in Detroit, Mich., where we live and work, accepting a layoff and looking for new work was not an option. The employees took the pay cut.

When asked if he was also subjected to a smaller paycheck, Ron replied he was not taking a pay cut because he "could not afford it." Seriously, he said that with a straight face.

The next day he and his wife left for a six-week vacation on the Mediterranean Sea. The following week Edward had a new motorcycle delivered to our warehouse. While the rest of us struggle to make ends meet on reduced pay, Ron's wife is driving around town in a company car with a company gas card. This is for real. I could not make this up.

The employees were somewhat less than thrilled at the idea of supporting the owners' lifestyles, while we were busy calculating whether it was best to pay the gas bill or the telephone bill that month. It was one or the other, not both.

Most employees dropped the company health insurance after the pay reduction because we could not afford the $50 weekly deduction from our checks. Rob recently reached the age at which he qualified for Medicare so he dropped the company health plan. His wife does not yet qualify for Medicare. She was added to the payroll at a pay rate of $200 per week, so she could stay on the company insurance (at no cost). In doing so, Rob effectively gave himself a $9,600 per year raise.

In the midst of all this, Edward told me that times were so tough he was going to have to drive to his vacation condo on Hilton Head Island rather than fly. Did he not understand whom he was talking to? I have not had a vacation in six years.

Though business has improved, the employees have not had their pay restored to pre-cut levels. Why do we tolerate it? This is Detroit, and it is a job. Ron and Edward count on that.

All the while they scratch their heads and wonder why employee morale is low.

– Robert Crachette


Next: Is Your Boss a Bully? Here's How to Deal


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beth

My last boss made my production look low because he did not want to pay health insurance premiums. Two weeks after my insurance kicked in he moved me to another location and said it was because my production dropped. I knew it did not drop and finally proved it when he made it look like it had dropped at the new location . The report that was given to me had errors that did not look like mistakes but looked intentional. When I asked about it and than finally went to the EAP about it a week later I was discharged for a frivolous reason.

Unemployment now denied me because of the reason and I do plan on fighting it. Of course I plan on getting legal representation and of course have all documentation fo email correspondence and the falsified production reports.

January 08 2012 at 3:15 AM Report abuse rate up rate down Reply
sheila cluff

Christen Brown you ripped off every client you ever had!!!! All your employees at On Camera and Yes Worldwide said the same and one even sued you because you would not pay him. You even tried to cheat DAVID your brother in law. He told me how you always tried to take advantage of him. I told you to be just with him but for you that was almost an impossible thing. You double billed Princess Cruises!
You changed the deal on every client. You also changed the deal on all your clients and would charge whatever you thought they could pay instead of one price for everyone and even when they agreed to the price you always upped it if you could by extras! You lye all the time! I know that you probably do not want to hear the truth Christen because you live in denial.


First read what the judge had to say about Christen Brown having everything to do with the Adoption International Program; business and how he found that she was complicit and was guilty of fraud and totally involved and how he ruled against her and would not give her one cent of the money she wanted that was to go to the clients.

The judge says it much better than I could. You can read the PDF file transcript of the courts decision at


http://law.justia.com/cases/california/court-of-appeal/2011/b221020/

Or check out:

http://cribsandcrimes.blogspot.com/




She also owns On Camera and Yes Worldwide! WATCH OUT!!!

January 04 2012 at 1:32 PM Report abuse rate up rate down Reply
sheila cluff

Christen Brown ripped off every client you ever had!!!! All your employees at On Camera and Yes Worldwide said the same and one even sued you because you would not pay him. You even tried to cheat DAVID your brother in law. He told me how you always tried to take advantage of him. I told you to be just with him but for you that was almost an impossible thing. You double billed Princess Cruises!
You changed the deal on every client. You also changed the deal on all your clients and would charge whatever you thought they could pay instead of one price for everyone and even when they agreed to the price you always upped it if you could by extras! You lye all the time! I know that you probably do not want to hear the truth Christen because you live in denial.


First read what the judge had to say about Christen Brown having everything to do with the Adoption International Program; business and how he found that she was complicit and was guilty of fraud and totally involved and how he ruled against her and would not give her one cent of the money she wanted that was to go to the clients.

The judge says it much better than I could. You can read the PDF file transcript of the courts decision at


http://law.justia.com/cases/california/court-of-appeal/2011/b221020/

Or check out:

http://cribsandcrimes.blogspot.com/




She also owns On Camera and Yes Worldwide! WATCH OUT!!!

January 04 2012 at 1:31 PM Report abuse rate up rate down Reply
mark

I had a boss who would get up in your face, nose to nose. He would intimidate you with physical actions and threaten you verbaley.
One day I slipped a pocket tape recorder into my pocket, let him do his thing, in the middle of his speech other wise "coaching session" my recorder clicked off. I politey ask for a second, pulled out the recorder and flipped the tape over,and restarted the recorder! He never again got me off by myself, and I always kept the recorder handy.

March 21 2011 at 6:36 AM Report abuse rate up rate down Reply
Hey Beverly!

It's a Boss's paradise out there, Even the nicest Boss knows, the Economy is very, very Bad, jobs are not around, and very Hard to find, Unemployment is high. . A Boss good or Bad know's they can demand more work out of you, they can push work demands on us to the Brink of the Envelope. Why ?????because there 30 more willing workers waiting in line for your miserable job....Especially if you are living hand to mouth...they read our neediest...into there greediest.

March 20 2011 at 5:04 PM Report abuse rate up rate down Reply
zygoter

I have worked for some terrible bosses and have learned to handle them in different ways, you rise above them or you put up with them until you can find another job. As far as the Take Your Money and Spend it bosses as recounted in Robert Crachette's story...they were the owner/partners and they can do whatever they want with the company. Privately held companies don't have a board of directors or share holders to report to. They can do whatever the hell the want, get over it or find another job.

March 20 2011 at 1:11 AM Report abuse rate up rate down Reply
sharonleo1

never a promotion, just more work. i would ask my boss every week and monthly how I was doing and they always said you are doing a good job, then review time it was always needs improvement so they did not have to give you a raise and if they did they were 2 years apart. then the boss who was an idiot, dumb as a rock but knew the department manager when raises were frozen would raise the bosses level to give them a raise. I could write a book on all the different underhanded and dirty deeds the bosses did to me for no reason, I was never late, never took an unscheduled day off, never refused any work and treated everyone like i wanted to be treated.. and i was treated like dirt for 18 years at MIC (no union they can do what ever they want and they did to me). One example of harassment was when Sue one of my many bosses came over and told me I was screwing up because I was hitting the computer key wrong(not the wrong key) but I pushed the button wrong.

March 20 2011 at 1:08 AM Report abuse rate up rate down Reply
pennydanger555

I'ts really sick how some bosses keep their jobs. The most disgusting thing I've seen is employees supporting horrible bosses and remaining silent to keep their jobs while hospital patients were being abused. These bosses were informed of the incidents by me and in turn wrote me up to bury the whole problem. I had a choice to do the right thing or collect my paycheck in silence. Thank God I don't work there anymore!

March 20 2011 at 12:50 AM Report abuse rate up rate down Reply
sharonleo1

MIC stole many of my ideas and the managers tooks credit, they worked me like a dog and said if i did not like it there is the door. They screamed at me on the floor as loud as they could, tried to get me to quit many times, tried to have others lie to have me fired for harassement, sexual advances which were all lies. they put me working three different shift in one week for seven years. they gave jobs to new hires and would not even consider me, they stifled any attempt i made to transfer back to gm or to another unit. they lied so that I would not even be considered. They made up false aligations several times. I was smart enough to keep maticulous records, and documented every thing. This continue with boss after boss after boss, they all knew each other and conspired to get me fired or to have me quit.

March 20 2011 at 12:36 AM Report abuse rate up rate down Reply
sharonleo1

I worked for GM Assembly for 14 years on the line, some good bosses some bad, really liked my job. Thank god for the UAW UNION , they really kept the bosses in line. Then I made the mistake of transfering to GMAC's insurance branch which is called Motor Insurance Corporation. In 18 years there I had one boss worse than the next for the entire time there. They paid half of what GM paid, and no medical in retirement. Finally after 32 years I retired.
A year later I took a job at The Home Depot part time and it is like working in heaven, everyone is so nice.

March 20 2011 at 12:27 AM Report abuse rate up rate down Reply
1 reply to sharonleo1's comment
Padma Gyaltsen

Yeah, lets here it for the lazy overpaid GM worker. The unions are killing this country and the UAW is right a the top of the list.

March 22 2011 at 8:25 PM Report abuse rate up rate down Reply

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