One of the essential qualities of a good leader is being able to run a good meeting. One of the quickest ways to identify a BossHole is to watch how they run meetings. Good leaders don’t waste their team’s time. Bad managers don’t respect their team’s time. They need to Learn to lead.
I’ve worked for several bosses that had no idea how to run effective meetings. Probably the worst case of this occurred when I was on the buying staff at Sav-on drugs in Anaheim California. We had a team of 20 buyers who worked at least 40 hours a week trying to get the right products and services for the company. Every Monday morning we would hold a meeting to propose the items that would appear on the next week’s print ads for the chain. On a good day this meeting would last until about 1 PM and on a bad day it would last until about 5 PM. So, if you think about it all of the hundreds of vendor appointments the hours of research and analysis all had to be done in a 32 hour week.
But then we had a bad manager who was fond of holding meetings. So virtually every week the Bosshole came up with two or three other meetings that we all had to attend that would further erode into the 32 hours of work that we had available to us. Inevitably when the productivity wasn’t quite achieving what this knucklehead wanted he decided to hold a meeting to teach us how to be better time managers.
The quickest way to identify a BossHole is to attend a meeting that they run. Bad managers run bad meetings. Good leaders don’t need to constantly hold meetings. 90% of business meetings are a waste of time and do more to destroy productivity than improve it.
So if you can imagine, there were 20 members of the buying staff and 2 merchandise managers plus the vice president of marketing all stuffed around a cramped conference table to have a one-hour meeting on how to be better time managers. the room was hot, stuffy and seemed to be devoid of good breathable air. The only problem is the meeting was scheduled to be over at 1PM and as we were approaching 5 PM we were still being lectured about time management. The curious thing is during those five hours virtually no one spoke other than the VP of marketing. And for the last hour everyone was eyeing the door trying to figure out how to escape.
At the time my commute home on a good day was at least an hour. My wife was a pharmacy manager for Sav-on and had to work the late shift that night. This meant I had to commute from Anaheim to Torrance to get my one-year-old son from the babysitter before 6 PM in order to avoid the wrath of his babysitter and fairly substantial overtime charges. And,if you who know the 91 freeway westbound at that time a day, you know this was going to present quite a challenge.
Sometimes You Just Have to Say No to a BossHole
I worked as a buyer because I wanted to. I could go back to my career as a pharmacist at any time and make more money than I was making as a buyer. So I had a little bit of emotional leverage on some of the other members of the buying team who didn’t have the safety net of a professional degree in their back pocket. So as the clock struck 5 PM I interrupted the VP of marketing to say, “ You know what, I know how to practice good time management, I’m going home.” So I got up and left.
One of the first clues you have about whether someone is a BossHole is whether or not they respect your time. And how they handle meetings is a marvelous indicator of their lack of respect for your time.
Check out my fun video from the series, You Might be a BossHole on bosses and meetings.
Since 1977 the author, Dr. Greg L. Alston has owned and operated a variety of businesses, worked for hundreds of bosses and supervised thousands of employees. His no nonsense approach and clear informal teaching style will teach you how to Coach others, Command respect, and Create an environment in which your team can thrive.
Leadership is not a personality trait, it is a way of acting. Great leaders build great teams. Great teams achieve great things. The call to leadership is a call to action and this action begins when you buy the book, subscribe to the blog or view the YouTube Channel. Use Greg’s free tools to Rate Your Boss or Rate Yourself as a Boss.