I am a long time devotee of manager tools and I am hoping that this community can give me some advice. I am a mid-level manager in a small company; I've been here about a year. I am struggling with my response to what I perceive as disrespectful culture in the upper management. Frequently, almost daily, I listen to what I feel are disparaging and rude speeches about other people that we work with or even directly to a colleague in a meeting. This makes me really uncomfortable and also very discouraged because these criticisms do nothing but put up road blocks and prevent progress.

Once I stated in a meeting, with all upper management present, that I felt strongly that we should all consider how our behavior affects our working relationships and that treating one another with respect would be more effective. There was a long awkward silence and subsequently I was avoided by some for a period of time. Obviously my behavior was not effective! It is not my place to give feedback to the perpetrators, I don't think. But I would really like to do something.

Any advice would be appreciated.


mmcconkie's picture

You may want to listen to the series titled Bad Boss #1The Angry and Demeaning Boss (it's a 5 part cast) The outline of that is that you should cope and stay cool, perform because they will use poor porformance against you (or others), and lastly decide what to do with your career. It sounds like you're doing the first two. Now you may want to consider how long you want to stay at the company. 

That may sound dramatic, but the reality is that you can't manage your boss or change your boss (see cast on Do NOT Give Feedback to Your Boss). Don't count on your boss changing. I'm not saying that you should leave right now - but you ought to consider your long-term goals baring in mind that the culture with senior staff is not going to change. 

Unfortunately, I've left a job because senior leaders were rude and spiteful. I was fortunate that the bulk of the judgement from them didn't fall on me - but I could see the writing on the wall that I didn't want to stay there long-term. I took 3 months to find a handful of companies that I would like to work for (the Choosing a Company to Work For series is incredible), purchased the Interview Series, and managed to get a couple of offers within another 2 months. 

Good luck!