Top 10 Employee gripes about managers

Thought I would toss this one out to balance a discussion posted earlier inviting criticism of employees.Often, employee behaviors reflect the standards of the management. “Behavior ignored is behavior approved”, was taught to me long ago by a really smart manager who didn’t just sit back a sigh, “But what can we do!”So I’ll toss out the first verbal hand-grenade: I disagree with the management practice of not promoting qualified staff because they are “too valuable” in their current position. I see the excuse given to those employees whose value is that they are the only one that will work a shift or job assignment that no ones else will. Or that certain employees will ususally say "yes".The mistake is the management then burns that individual out by locking them into that position until the employee gets so fed up that they leave the organization for another one that will let them move to their next level of the career development.Oh yea, and to those who hate employees using their cell phones for personal conversations while on the clock: Hey mangers… leave your cell phone in the office if you’re going out on the floor!Any more contributions?Paul

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  • Paul,
    You basically dislike bad management. I do too. Everything you have listed is a prime example of things bad managers do. Just like bad employess, bad managers can destroy a company as well. I am a big big fan of it all starts at the top with the owner / CEO. Their attitudes, actions, and reactions will filter down through the rest of corporate management and right into the restaurants. I would add a corollary to "behavior ignored is behavior approved" -- "behavior observed is behavior duplicated". This is the difference between leadership and management. A famous saying from WWI, "no one ever managed someone out of the trenches". Truth! You lead by example both good and bad, you will foster the behaviors in which you yourself engage.

    One of the great things about working at Ted's is the demonstrated commitment to excellence. I have observed senior management in restaurants lending a hand, expoing food, running food, clearing tables, all the while encouraging and mentoring staff. No harsh words or yelling about what may have precipitated a situation where the CEO feels he needs to jump in, just lots of camraderie and helping hands. A good laugh afterwards and some constructive discussions about how to avoid similar situations in the future. Not every Ted's is perfect, but we are working to get them all closer to our ideal.

    If there is one thing I would say about our management is that we overload our operators with too much stuff, we need to work on our filters for rolling out initiatives and time things a little better. How much e-mail and documentation do we want our managers to read on a daily basis. We need to get them out on the floor not in the office reading the latest missive from corporate. As the IT guy, I am working on solutions for better communications.

    • David...
      Thank you for your reply.
      I think we're both on the same page here.
      The drawback to this post, as well as the one asking for criticism of employees, is that it just opens the door to a "bitch session" with no real goal of resolution.
      I do find it interesting that the post about employees drew quick and volumes of responses.
      It would appear that there are fewer challenges with management, given the responses so far.
      • Oh, I think a good "bitch session" can be cleansing and it is important to get things out in the open, if only for our own mental health.

        I think you will find that fohboh is management / owner top heavy. There are certainly servers and kitchen staff folks here, but the majority of what I see, I would say are management themselves. There are definitely challenges in and with management. Perhaps if we change the question to tell a story about bad management you may have observed at any restaurant and then to make it constructive, tell us how you would have handled that situation.

        • Thanks David...

          The items I noted in this post I have seen happen either as an employee or a guest during my 28-year career and before as a consumer. Unfortunately, most of these situations the hourly employees are pretty much helpless as their jobs could and have been threatened for complaining or reporting.

          That being said, FOHBOH is one of the few SBM groups that I have participated in the seems to have a good flow of professional discussion with minimal "*hit flinging" exchanges no matter how sensitive the restaurant topic.

          FOHBOH... it's a good place to be.

          Thanks again for your sharing your perspective.

  • Unfair application of discipline on regular and often offenses.

    Late for work
    Unprepared (never brings a wine-key)
    Lets food die in the window cuz they're talking or just don't run food unless it's theirs.

    Too often if you the MOD's pal, you can get away with all kinds of BS.

    Favoritism, nepotism, you give it whatever name that fits.

    Unfair and unequal treatment causes bad blood and does not foster a team spirit or loyalty to a company.

  • Managers-Owners that "sell the dream" and leave the staff to "live the nightmare".
    For example: running an ad or promotion but forgetting to let the staff know about it so when the guests have questions about it the staff look like dummies. (I've seen that happen to both FOH and BOH staff.)

    Starting a pomotion but failing to load it in the POS system so on roll-out everything comes to a grinding halt. It's like a coach giving a pep talk only to have the team blocked at the entry to the playing field because the door is locked!

    Promoting a "Special" and only preping enough for 5-orders on a busy weekend.
  • Management that ignore workplace bullies, skaters, and whinners.
    Very unispiring.
  • Operations that enforce a "no dating policy between management and hourly staff" yet the owners/execs are routinely observed hitting on on the staff who are on the clock.
  • Management-Owners who go to the bar after their shift, get really drunk, and then decide it's time to start telling employees and even guests "what they really think of them".

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