Great Boss? Where is HR?
So, you've got a new boss. How do you like him?
You do not know what to think of him. Let's call him Full Smith. He has been your new boss for a few weeks now. You have an open mind and you wanted to give him the benefit of the doubt. He sure comes across as assertive, not necessarily imposing. Just very assertive. Let's just say that lately, he has been qualified otherwise by one of his peers.
We will call him assertive and aggressive at tackling his business. Assertive to the point that by his first ten days on the job he had made 80% of the women in the department cry. Crying for what? Different reasons. They were either enraged or probably "just" offended. They all said they they felt demeaned however.
And you, you are a man. Not much of a man do you think because it came to your mind that maybe you should resign. This boss never acknowledges your little accomplishments. He points out at your failures. It is a constant reminder. By now you feel like a failure.That is his way of mentoring you. He makes remarks in public, as if he could never wait to snap at you.
The strange thing is that he does not see what such and such does or does not do. Would it be by any chance lack of objectivity?
It seems that he became very "touchy" also. The other day, while he was giving a feedback to one of the ladies of the department he told her that he did not like the "smirk" on her face! As a matter of fact, she said that he walked away from her and told her that he would be back when she would decide to take whatever he said seriously.
Where is HR?
As I watched Michael Scott throughout the seasons of the famous NBC series "The Office" I always said to myself: "I hope that nobody is like that in the real world!" He sure has his way of getting things done. He can make you smile, if not laugh. He thinks he his the Best Boss! And if you had to choose bewteen a Michael Scott boss and a Full Smith boss who asserts that he is very good at making things happen, which one would you choose?
And if you where HR what would you do?
Talent Management writes that:
"Eighty percent of respondents reported that the most important thing a boss can do is to solicit and value employee input, and 37 percent felt that it was also important for a manager to offer constructive feedback".
- Who hired this new boss? On what basis? Was it a good hire?
HR has a consulting role. It is crucial to let the hiring manager understand what would be a good fit. Metrics are only of value if they can be achieved through employees' engagement. The later will vanish if employees feel threatened, undervalued, and/or under estimated.
- Has the new boss being through On-boarding?
Proper on-boarding is crucial. It's not only about getting results but more about how to get the needed results. It is about blending with the culture of the organization. Was there a proper follow-up?
- Would it be possible that this manager's boss is a micro-manager?
Micro managers do exist. It is all about them: "do this now, do this this way (the only way, my way), why does your employee put this in his drawer? Why are you still here?..." Oh, believe me, there are some of those out there and they do as it pleases to them. This new boss could be just the reflection of his own boss!
As HR have you done anything? Or are you just counting the times this new boss gets reported to you and document until you would say that he is not a good fit? OK, as HR you are not responsible for that type of behavior. But whatever your title could be - and I am not talking about specialists here but the main HR chair - you are a business partner or a consultant, and you are accountable to that extent. ...and I sincerely hope that you do not believe yourself that micro-managing is the only way to get things done.