Favorite "Bad" Boss Story

Around here, we have a radio station that has a "Sweet Old Boss" contest. I was just curious if you have any "Sweet Old Boss" stories.

One of Mine:

I was hired by a man who looked a lot like George Kastanza (Seinfield) and was shorter than me. (important to the story later) After about a week, he stopped talking directly to me and began leaving me notes on my desk when I would go to the bathroom. He also would give me directions via voice mail - even though our offices were 10 feet apart. I would usually try to ask questions when he came and went to his office - which required me jumping up from my desk and chasing him down.

One day, I decided life was too short to work for this man any more, so I began wearing my tallest heels to the office and towering over him every chance I got. I began using the words, "little, short, small, shrimp" as much as possible. It was with relief when I resigned and began working elsewhere. By the way, he went through about five other office managers in 18 months before his boss decided he needed a new "little" career opportunity.

Your stories?



  • 24 Comments sorted by Votes Date Added
  • My boss (who I hope does not read this forum) is about 6 inches shorter than me and probably at least 100 pounds heavier. I have gained about 20 lbs in the past 5 years. He loves to make smart remarks about my weight gain and girth.

    How's that go? "The pot calling the kettle, black".
  • Mine is a former client story. I was working in a manufacturing company where the bosses spoke English and the employees spoke Spanish. Most of the first line supervisors spoke a little English. I suggested an English class for the first line supervisors as a way to help fix the communication problems which were creating all sorts of problems. The classes went along for months until the owner called the VP of Manufacturing one day and asked for Rigo, to which the response was "Rigo is in his English class". The owners response in unprintable and he said stop the classes - he isn't paying people to go to school. At my suggestion a contingent of managers went to the owner to tell him about how much more money he makes because scrap is down, etc. etc. He said "I don't care - I pay people to work, not go to school", even though it was only one hour per week. I fired the client.
  • One year for Bosses Day, one of our employees called all 26 of our locations and encouraged people to send our CEO Bosses Day cards. The CEO recieved hundreds of cards. He sent out a blanket voice mail to all employees thanking them but telling them "not to waste their money and to quit brown nosing."

    Margaret Morford
  • Wow! So far I think you're in the lead, Margaret!

  • During my last pregnancy, a fellow manager couldn't let any opportunity pass to remark about "how huge you're getting", "how many are you having? a litter?" - you get the idea. He also raised thoroughbreds (race horses) to which he constantly compared my condition. I finally resorted to my baser instincts. He was short and bald - as I told him, my condition would definitely end in a few months. What was he going to do? That would shut him down for a while.
  • Years ago, in one of my first jobs in America, as a Bookkeeper -
    the Boss gave me a cake for my birthday ~ and then told me I was being laid off...PS: that company went out of business eventually.


  • I worked for an eye specialist for a couple years. This doctor actually referred to me as "lunch lady" for the first year or so because he thought the only thing I did was get his ham-spread sandwich (without tomatoes) twice a week.

    Once I didn't check his sandwich (yes I opened it and checked it) and I missed the tomato. He came over, threw the opened sandwich on my desk and asked if I was happy that he couldn't eat now.

    There's more to this story..but let's just say he wasn't a nice person.
  • Mine is from my last employer. It was a small privately owned company with an owner who knew nothing about HR. Upon starting with the company, I questioned why he was paying the only male branch manager (there were six of them) 7,000 more a year than the women. The women ran larger branches, had more education, experience, etc. His reponse was that the male was the breadwinner in the family and the women had their husband's salaries to fall back on!!!!
  • [font size="1" color="#FF0000"]LAST EDITED ON 04-07-03 AT 09:55AM (CST)[/font][p]I can identify with you on this one! I approached my boss (former one) about why he was paying the Maintenance Guy more than me as an HR Director. He said that the Maint Guy had a family to support and since I was the wife of an attorney, I didn't need much money.

    He's the same boss who also told me that he hired me for my looks (in my younger days) so that I could persuade the Board Of Directors to do things his way. I gave my immediate resignation and was packing my office when he decided I was seriously offended and he apologized.

    He ultimately got an "Involuntary Career Opportunity" from the company and now practices his brand of leadership in Chicago.
  • I was interviewing for a technician opening I had. One of the applicants, under the influence of something???, pulled a knife in the middle of the interview and threatened to slash me if I did not hire him. My office was at the end of a long hallway and there were no people in the vacinity. Somehow I convinced him to put the knife away and I would forget the incident. As soon as he left I went to my boss and told him what had just happened. I asked if he could put a buzzer in my office that would ring in the plant manager's area if I had another problem. My boss looked down on his desk, picked up a letter opener and gave it to me saying, "Here, use this." I asked him if he was serious. He nodded and said, "Yes, now you can go back to work."

    I thanked him for the letter opener and gave 3 weeks notice. For a minute there, I thought he was going to ask for his letter opener back. x:o
  • thats the funniest one yet...lol
  • I used to work for a company whose owner really "took the cake". I was hired as the "office manager" but truly had very little authority. My office equipment consisted of a word processor (remember them), an adding machine and a one-line phone. Although he purchased a brand new computer for the business, he kept it at his "home office". This person had quite a temper (he had many people who worked for him in tears at one time or another - me included) and I remember one instance wherein he forgot some equipment for an installation - I called him on his cell to inform him of this. He did an illegal u-turn on the highway and received a couple of tickets. Upon his return to the office he yelled at ME and told me it was MY fault he got the tickets - and I wasn't even in the car!!
  • I once worked in position where I was overworked and underappreciated (not to mention undercompensated!)
    For example(one of many), at my boss' request, I spent a great deal of time and energy researching and then writing a suspicion based drug testing policy for our company. I was told to forward it to the President of the Co. I did so, and didn't hear one single solitary word about it. No "Thanks," no "we've decided not to go that way, but good work." Nothing.
    Until several months later during my Performance Appraisal when my boss, apparently lacking any real benefits to play up about my position (because there weren't any) told me how special I should feel because when I wrote that policy, I had a "direct, written link to the President of the company, and not everyone has that." I guess either she was too stupid to realize, or thought that I was, that a monkey could have written a policy, forwarded it to the President, and never heard another word about it. I put in my two weeks shortly there after, and she had the nerve to be surprised.
  • I arrived at work one Monday about 5 years ago and was stunned to find out my secretary had quit, and the message she left with the receptionist was that she "can't work for that @$$h___ anymore."

    After calling her house all morning to find out what I had done, I learned that I wasn't the culprit. My boss - who used my secretary more than I did - had a weeklong conference in Atlanta and flew out on Saturday. When he arrived at the airport, he realized he had forgotten his SHAVING KIT. He called my secretary at home, and ordered her to drive to his house, pick up his SHAVING KIT and take it to the airport.

    She actually did it - and then he berated her in the airport because it took her too long and his boarding number had already passed. Never mind that she hung up the phone, drove 10 miles to his house, drove 15 miles to the airport, parked, found the right terminal and gate, and delivered his SHAVING KIT - all in 30 minutes.

    I told my secretary to come in, and we'd go discuss it with the VP of HR. She did, and he "allowed" her to come back, on one condition. She had to switch places with HIS secretary, who wouldn't even go downstairs to the deli and get him a sandwich during her lunch. (not that she should... I'm paraphrasing his remarks)

    Anyway, I'm not sure who was the worse boss, but they both are right up there in my book.

  • Years ago I worked for a real piece of work. I was the supervisor of a small department and put in 12 hour days and ALWAYS worked on weekends (had a 62 mile commute too). After I had been there about a year the CFO left and was replaced by the piece of work.

    During her 1st 6 months she arrived late every day (15-30 minutes), took long lunches, left early (15-30 minutes) and was out of the office 2 afternoons a week to have her braces adjusted. During this time she would stand at my door and gossip for hours at a time. It took awhile, but I finally managed to hint that I had work to do (she didn't like it).

    I then bought a house and took 2 days off to move. This was the 1st time I had taken since I started working there. A week later my daughter became ill and I had to take another day off. I ended up running in to make sure a job was done that had some issues surrounding it (it still counted towards my leave time).

    The next day I returned to find I had been written up for excessive absenteeism (and the memo was full of misspellings and unbelievably poor grammer). When I confronted her about it, she was astonished that I would think anything of it since she had received those kinds of warnings all the time in her previous job and they didn't really mean anything.

    About 6 months later I finally told the Operations Manager that I had had it and was quitting. He made it clear she would go first, or, I could just be removed from having to report to her. That's when I found out that of the 4 or 5 departments answering to her originally, mine was the only one left. I opted not to report to her and stay with the company.

    Long story...but boy what a nightmare! She was still there when I left 2 years later, spending her time visiting with the CEO.

  • My boss had an affair with my secretary. I was the office manager/HR person at the time and it made my life MISERABLE. One day she called out sick and he sent the copy boy (who also worked for me) to take her two cream donuts to her house some 20 miles away! At one point her husband found out about the affair, hired a private detective, and brought in pictures and tape recordings of them together and passed them around the office!!!! I left the organization at that point. Not long thereafter he was accused of embezzling company funds and fired!!!!!
  • >One day she called out sick and he sent the copy boy (who also worked for me) to take her two cream donuts to her house some 20 miles away!

    What a romantic! ;)
  • Romantic? He destroyed two families and ruined his reputation to boot, not to mention hers. We all thought he was insane!
  • By the way... it appears that you don't feel she deserves any of the responsibility.
  • As they say, it takes two to tango. :oo
  • Sometimes three... but that's a topic for a different forum. ;)
  • And an entirely different web site - like the ones you simply do not go to at work! x:D
  • Frank, Leslie...

    Sometimes I worry about you guys. x;-)
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