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Learning from your boss’ mistakes
Christo Jacob
Monday, June 4, 2007
Too many cooks needn’t spoil the broth
Jaison Martin, SPGA specialist
Once we had to take up a project dealing with modems for a major government organization. Though my boss took it up as a challenge, he was not keen enough in optimizing the resources effectively. There were internal conflicts within the organization, and my boss was not prepared to include any other group in the project. If he had included the other group we would not have dropped the project half way.

Before taking up any project there should be complete planning and one needs to be aware of the resources available.

Designating is also an art!
Amarnath B, Client Support Executive Officer, Mach India
In an offshore project when my boss was onsite, a lot of projects were designated. The project was assigned to us because the officers in Singapore had left the company; and though it dealt with fixing errors, it was handed over to us without any proper documentation. Despite the transition files not having been handed over, the management was not bothered to look into the issues regarding guidelines for documentation. So we had to go back to the previous projects and this caused slow down of the work processes.
Small courtesies matter

Goura Kishore Pani, Software Professional, Intel
It often happens in a company that when a project is assigned to the employees or the team, the boss has a lot of expectations. If we perform upto the expectations and meet the deadlines they promise one with good focal ratings, but sometimes, we end up not receiving asper our expectation.

I had a similar experience once, where my boss had promised that I would be highlighted or given some perks if I performed well and completed the project as per expectations. However, he not only forgot about fulfilling the commitment but also did not bother to thank me. This should not have happened. Whenever a boss assigns a project to the employees he has to set expectations, and he must be fair enough to motivate the employees either by encouraging them or by rewarding them with perks.

Muttering about buttering
Ravi Kishen, Software Architect
Favoritism rules in most organizations. This has to be cut down from the top-level management. One of my colleagues had to butter up his boss in his previous organization. He used to praise his boss during the time of personal reviews. This in turn would favor him in the form of perks or other means in his career. However, such wicked moves should not be encouraged.

Unity in Diversity: A boss’s challenge
G. Srinivasan, Senior Software Engineer
When our team was assigned on a System Chip verification project, the boss expected a lot from us. The project required all of us to work us a team. However, most of the team did not know each other and were not interactive. My boss was neither keen in taking initiatives to make the team more interactive, nor did he bother to motivate us. This adversely affected the project.

Sometimes it happens that I have an issue and ask the customer for clarification. However, on the contrary, most of the members of the team were aware of the solutions and they were not keen in expressing their thoughts and ideas. This created a wrong impression among about us in the eyes of the customer.

It is very difficult to get the desired output when there is no interaction. If the manager had taken some initiative in making the team more interactive, this would not have happened.

I know that it is not fair blaming the manager entirely, but as a fresher to a team there are limitations. People are of different kinds and from different backgrounds. It is a manager’s duty to make the employees feel comfortable and motivate them.

Office Politics: The sad truth
Dinesh Bhat,Principal Software Engineer, Tesco Hindustan Services
When I joined as a fresher in one of the leading MNCs in Mumbai, I was not aware of the work culture of the IT industry. This was an opportunity for my boss to take advantage of me being a fresher. His intention was only to get the work done, and consequently he dumped a lot of work on me. He gave impossible timelines where I had to sit late nights in the office and work. He was not bothered about my health either. I was really frustrated and happened to escalate this to the senior management.

This resulted in me moving on to my next boss and I was assigned another project. Here also I had to undergo another trauma based on caste and regional politics. The project was an excellent one. However, the manager was playing the favoritism card based on caste and religion during the course of the project. I was the only odd man out in the team.

People Quit because of Bosses
Sneha Naidu, Security Analyst
Even after working to my best, the credit was given to someone else. This stimulated me to move out of the company. I look for some qualities in the manager. If I find someone who values my opinions and ideas, even if he does not accept it or if my objective is in line with my boss’s objective, then definitely I will stick to that organization.

Too much of a good thing is bad
Chandramouli, Consultant, Zinnov technologies
I have good professional relationship with my boss. This was because my boss and I were family friends right from the childhood. This personal element started affecting our professional interaction to somelevel. So whenever we had team meetings, we used to take more initiatives and we were involved in active discussions. This made my colleagues feel left out though the favoritism card was not played. This ended up in us having more internal problems amongst my colleagues and that created uncertainty. Therefore, a boss should keep aside the personal element of interaction while working with his/her subordinates. When I become a manger probably I would try to avoid such an instance.

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