7 Bosses Who Sound Nice — But Are a Nightmare in Reality

Woman stressed at work


AnnaMarie Houlis
AnnaMarie Houlis4.87k
Journalist & travel blogger

Not all bad bosses are created equal. Some bosses may seem ideal but once, you start working with 'em, you'll quickly realize that they're not the best bosses after all. In fact, they're far from it.

Here are seven bosses that might sound great but, in reality, are some of the worst types of people for whom to work. (Be careful what you wish for!)

1. The boss who wants to be your BFF.

While it might sound lovely to have an awesome friendship with your boss, working for friends doesn't always work out so well. In fact, when power dynamics come into play, it can seriously hurt your friendship. You didn't take this job to make a new best friend anyway; you took it to do your work and do it well. So keep your relationships in the workplace as professional as possible! And tread carefully when it comes to spending too much time with your boss outside the office; if you have a falling out or need some space, you don't want it to impact your career. 

2. The boss who doesn't care if you're late.

The boss who doesn't care if you're late also probably doesn't care if your coworkers are late. While rolling into the office well after 9 a.m. might sound beautiful, having to pick up your late coworker's slack because they're running behind schedule, too, doesn't sound so wonderful, does it? 

3. The boss who never shows up.

Woohoo! A boss who is never around to, well, boss you around. That sounds all well and good, but this means that your boss also is never around to, well, be a boss when you need them. If you have questions or concerns that require input from your boss, and you can never get a hold of them, that's going to do some damage to your workplace productivity.

4. The boss who is full of fun stories.

Story time can be fun, sure. It's inevitable that you'll exchange chit chat with your colleagues and even your boss at work, since you spend such a hefty bulk of your time with them. But you don't want to work for a boss who is full of stories all the time. After all, you need to get your work done at some point — and you don't want to end up at the office late because you spent the day dilly-dallying around.

5. The boss who never has a negative thing to say.

Positive reinforcement feels good; that's no secret. While you wouldn't wish that your boss has negative things to say, you should hope that your boss at least has the capacity to share the not-so-pretty things with you. Whether there's negative news happening  in the company of which you should be kept abreast or you need constructive criticism to better do your job, it's important that your boss has the communication skills to have honest conversations with you. Even when they're tough to have.

6. The boss who is super lenient with deadlines.

The boss who is super lenient with deadlines might sound dreamy, but if they let you get away with missing deadlines, they probably also let your coworkers get away with missing deadlines. And waiting on your team member to finish up their work can impact your own productivity and performance. Deadlines are in place for a reason. They help keep the work flow organized and moving forward. A disregard for deadlines will turn messy very quickly.

7. The boss who is obsessed with work.

Of course, you want to work for someone who is passionate about their job. That kind of energy can be contagious! But you don't want to work for someone who is so obsessed with their work, they don't know how to delegate it, they micromanage and they ping you at all hours of the day and night, even when you're supposed to be off. You want to work for someone who is eager to work for and excited about the company, but who understands how to let everyone else do their jobs without burning out.

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AnnaMarie Houlis is a feminist, a freelance journalist and an adventure aficionado with an affinity for impulsive solo travel. She spends her days writing about women’s empowerment from around the world. You can follow her work on her blog, HerReport.org, and follow her journeys on Instagram @her_report, Twitter @herreport and Facebook.