How to Be a Bad Manager

It has commonly been said that employees don’t quit their jobs, they quit their managers. That’s because managers have a huge influence over how their employees perceive their jobs. They  can really affect every aspect of an employee’s day, how they feel about coming to work, and even their overall career path. While good managers encourage productivity, boost morale, and increase retention, bad managers can do just the opposite. A poor manager can be highly detrimental for teams, departments, and companies. Therefore, it is important to understand the qualities and tendencies of bad managers so you can avoid them. Here are some qualities that most bad managers have in common.


Nothing is more frustrating to employees than a manager that constantly micromanages every function of their job. Although leaders often have what it takes to run a successful team, they also need to be aware that they are hiring talented and capable employees. Instead of micromanaging every aspect of their job, managers need to empower employees by giving them the freedom to plan and execute on their own. 

Avoiding Conflict

Addressing and handling conflict is not an easy part of management but it’s part of the job. Managers that avoid conflict or sweep it under the rug lose the trust and respect of their employees. This can lead to tensions in the workplace and great displeasure among employees. Rather, managers should strive to handle conflict in a timely and respectful manner. 

Poor Communication Skills

Managers with poor communication skills can have a negative impact on their employees. Lack of communication leads to confusion and frustration and it can definitely impact productivity. Poor communication can range from not providing clear instructions to failing to provide feedback on a regular basis. Ultimately, managers who are poor communicators will lose good employees. 

Demanding Authority

Some managers think they automatically deserve respect simply because of their title and position. This authoritarian style of behavior suggests that they are more important than their employees and that they have better ideas than their team. This can immediately lead to resentment and anger among employees and ultimately lead to the demise of the team.


If employees feel like they can’t talk to their managers about issues and concerns at work, this can create a barrier between them and their manager. Some managers may unintentionally  come across as unapproachable while others may claim to be too busy. Either way, this can discourage employees from sharing their feelings and frustrations which can ultimately lead to a number of problems. 

Lack of Empathy

Nothing inspires a team more than a manager who listens, understands, and cares about them. There are always going to be challenges for employees both personally and professionally so it’s important to have a manager who is empathetic and understanding. Managers who lack empathy will almost always lead to high turnover and low productivity. 

Failure to Give Credit

Who wants to work hard for a manager that never recognizes their efforts? Managers that fail to acknowledge their employees will almost certainly lose them. People want to feel like they are appreciated for their hard work and they want to know their manager is willing to recognize them and reward them. Whether the manager steals the credit for themselves or simply fails to give credit, this is a sure fire way to demotivate their team.