THE ETERNAL LONELINESS OF BAD LEADERSHIP

It’s not really the misgivings about my abilities that have prevented me from applying for leadership positions. It’s more the burning fear and the fact that I would rather set myself on fire with wet grass using ice cream than occupy a position of leadership.

Overreaction, sure, but for me few things are as daunting as managing people. And few things are as important.

I’ve never had a boss that inspired me to be better. But lately I feel that the department of boss-quality-control has closed and emigrated to Syria. And it has made me all the more fearful of management jobs because it has reminded me how devastating the consequences of careless leadership can be.

Listen, words fail to describe how grateful I am that I have a job, bad boss or no. I go to work because the very thing I do gives me purpose. It allows me the platform to create a legacy so that when I die, I can say: Look. That is the thing I did…

It also gives me family. Those sometimes ridiculous, often infuriating colleagues of mine become the every-day-family that gets me through some every-day-tough-times…

And it gives me a place to go. Over the Christmas holidays I was on leave for more than a month and the loneliness and monotony made me feel like I was trapped in the Overlook Hotel.

So I love having a job. But one by one I see my colleagues be imprisoned by a boss who cares little for their opinion and even less for the fact that policies and rules of conduct are being manipulated to serve the agenda of an ambitious few.

So for once I stuck my neck out last week. I stood up when it appeared clear that one more travesty would damage the reputation of my employer. I was careful about the arrangement of my words and confident that I was a Joan of Ark in the Good Fight.

Meetings were scheduled and promises were made…

But today we were informed that all will remain the same and I was to accept the inevitable. No rhyme or reason given.

The ambitious few had trumped my objections.

So now I get to feel how it feels. That un-overcomeable sense of silence. I get to have a small, itty bitty taste of what it feels like to be disregarded.

I feel walls going up around me and I vow never to speak out again. I wallow in my self-pity.

And then I think: if this little episode has rattled me thusly, how bad must it feel to be harassed at work and have your boss do nothing? Or to be accused of harassment when you are innocent while your boss seems intent on believing your enemy?

How lonely must you feel to experience racism while your boss looks the other way?

How enraged must you be if your bosses steal your ideas to use as their own?

The reason bad bosses leave us lonely, I think, is because of the dehumanization of it. In an environment known for intellectual freedom and otherness we are now told to shut up…just do your job…don’t make waves.

I am not longer to be heard. I am no longer to be seen. Let’s take it all the way to the end of the spectrum, am I still worthy of love?

I’m tired tonight so I won’t ponder this much more. I’m brewing a chococino. I’ll sit down soon and think of the people of Earth. And I’ll pray that the fighters fight on, and the speak-outers speak out, and the meddlers keep meddling.

But tonight, I’m tired.

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