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What Makes or Will Characterize a Good Boss?

Updated on June 7, 2013

Love My Boss


Bosses Are People Too

What are boss-like attributes that the employees enjoy? Does a boss have to be a remote, solitary figure whom no one can fathom? If someone lives as if he or she were entitled to special treatment because they are superior innately to the employees at work, this probably will not be the most popular manager or supervisor in town. All too often, bosses are notoriously unpopular and feared by their subordinates.

What exactly is likability as applied to the superior in charge of a company or a particular project? To make a boss into someone likable instead of hated, there must be something pleasing about him or her. This usually involves having a personality with which the employees can identify. It also means that the boss isn't someone who typically is going to give the workers a hard time about anything they discuss with him or her. In fact the opposite would be true of someone's favorite kind of boss. He or she would be a person whom the workers actually enjoy mingling with or conversing with about a broad range of topics, especially work-related matters.

Being noticed and appreciated by a boss is one of the key ingredients in making that supervisor a winner in the eyes of the workers. What qualities especially make someone well-liked at work? A characteristic smile can work wonders. But selfishness in any form is a poisonous ingredient in a boss's personality.

The good thing about analyzing what makes a good boss is that it's no different from saying what makes someone likable and popular. This is because bosses are pretty much the same as workers or anybody else you'd care to name or imagine. Although it seems hard to believe at times, a boss is just another human being like you or me.

But there are some intricacies involved in pinpointing the reasons why we like one boss but not another. I think the key difference is that good bosses are true to themselves. That is, they are trying to be the kind of boss they always wanted when they were in the role of the worker and someone else was the boss.

Of course this is only half the story, because it's just the viewpoint of the worker. So what makes a good boss from the standpoint of your boss's superiors? Workers may love a lenient boss, for example, but executives higher up might be losing patience after deadlines are missed and products fall apart.

In the end, that boss won't be very well liked at all. Workers will lose their jobs and feel betrayed; executives will have to admit failure and close down the company.

I think the same analysis will apply whether a boss is seen from above or below. A good boss has to be liked by everyone.

Walking a tightrope between workers and executives, the good boss has to take into account the preferences of higher superiors, be smart enough to interpret their orders and pass them along to the workers in just the right words and tone, and wind up keeping everyone happy and successful.

A good boss should not disrupt workers or scare them with angry demands. But workers can't always have their way, if giving in to them means angering the higher executives. In short, a good boss knows how to do the impossible, when the situation demands it.

No one is perfect, but allowing for a moderate degree of forgiveness in everyone involved, the "good" boss, ultimately, is popular with both workers and executives. This is because he or she can see things from both points of view, and knows how to steer around hazards that will ruffle feathers in either group.

A byproduct of being a good boss is to make one's own boss feel well-liked, the same as the workers feel. Well-liked by whom? By the good boss, of course.

Workers, assuming they are human, want to feel their boss likes them. The boss's superiors, strange though it may seem, are human also. So they even want to feel the boss likes them too.

It's almost like having two groups of jealous children, all wanting to feel accepted and liked. It's odd, but understandable when we realize we all like ourselves and think everyone else should too.

Of course there's another factor that's the enemy of all this goodness. It's meanness; and if it ever creeps into the scenario at work, everything will be lost. But how can we avoid it in a fast-paced, stressful environment?

Easy. Just avoid it. That's all. Avoid meanness like the plague, come what may.

What makes a good boss is what makes anyone good. Admirable traits must characterize the good boss.

Good bosses don't have to be perfect, but all in all, they should be the kind of people we like pretty close to all the time.

Being liked consistently by just about everyone is what makes a good boss. It doesn't have to be charisma, or any one personality trait. But making people feel comfortable, secure, and liked is what it takes.


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    • profile image

      Sara 3 years ago

      Excellent blog here! Also your website loads up fast! What host are you using? Can I get your atlifiafe link to your host? I wish my site loaded up as fast as yours lol

    • Barbara Kay profile image

      Barbara Badder 6 years ago from USA

      To me a good boss is a leader to his workers. He makes them want to follow him and his good traits make them want to be like him.

      Good hub.