SURVEY SAYS – Dear Boss…

October 15, 2009 ( - With Bosses Day just around the corner, I asked readers what comments/counsel they would share with their bosses - good or bad - if they could do so anonymously.

Here’s what you had to say:

  • While my boss is good at getting the work done, she needs to realize that not everyone works the same way she does.   If she wants something in particular done first, then let us know.   Otherwise, let us get the work done in the order we do it.
  • That person that used to be the boss, tell him/her to ‘shut up’ sometimes 🙂
  • You need a better poker face!
  • your staff will do what you want without you telling them, it will be o.k.
  • I don’t think he is a great manager because he plays favorites and does not share information necessary for you to do the best job that you can do.
  • Thanks for believing in me and allowing me to flourish.
  • That I appreciate his hands-off approach with me – but wish he he would show more interest in what I do.
  • Overall, you’re a great boss. I would like to see you out and about more often, helping the team pull together more. Regular staff meetings would be very helpful.
  • Employees of a company are not the enemy, not just numbers and deserve more than disdain.   These employees should not be called to continual sacrifice in pay and benefits when not only do executives not make the same sacrifices but actually grant themselves perks.   (But I’m not bitter.)
  • I feel I am honest with my boss at all times- good or bad she is that type of boss
  • Grow a backbone!
  • Don’t leave.   I am not ready to train another boss.   There’s enough stress as is.
  • He’s a good listener and partner to our team and works hard to get initiatives that our team cares about accomplished at our firm.
  • I have the world’s greatest boss. I’ve worked for her going on 17 years now, and I don’t know how I’ll manage to work for anyone else when she retires next year. She’s personable, has a good sense of humor, supports me completely, and lets me run HR my way. She’s the best!
  • Please stop hoarding work/knowledge.   Nobody is trying to get your job.
  • Please be consistent.
  • Put into practice the things you know.
  • I'd like to tell her to zip her lips because the practice of confiding in a subordinate about the weaknesses of another subordinate does not engender trust, but rather the exact opposite.
  • He is fair and he listens well.
  • Loosen up, talk to people, yell at them if they need it.
  • Talk to me!
  • She needs a new wardrobe.
  • She can be a real bully.
  • He needs to communicate better, both in frequency and the content of his messages.   He need sto do a better job of putting himself in the place of the staff so that he understands how his minimal efforts will be perceived.
  • Nothing. I'm fortunate to have one of those rare bosses that I can say virtually anything to face-to-face.
  • I think she's great.   She tells me what needs to be done and lets me do it without hovering.
  • There are pills now that help manic/depressive disorders....
  • Grow up & take responsibility & act like a CEO (someone that uses his brain & not his emotions to make decisions)
  • Great strength of boyish sense of enthusiasm - just don't show it to me before I had my morning Mt.Dew (caffeine).
  • Walk around the office with your head up and say hello to everyone you see.   Ackowledge your assistant's efforts and accomplishments regularly.   Delegate the small stuff.
  • If you'd asked me that several years ago, I would've had a hefty laundry list of grievances.   But one of the few advantages of advancing age is the ability to put things in perspective and realize that my boss's good qualities far outweigh her annoying ones.   (Gee, I hope my staff can say the same about me!)
  • I like you...I like what you do...but HR has made it hard for you to do your job.   How do we change that?
  • I'm so glad you're not the hovering, micro-managing type. You're a great boss!
  • Get a clue.
  • Don't feel guilty about spending time away from your family anymore, go ahead and retire and enjoy your free time.
  • Above, that he has to let go to maintain the big picture and allow a few mistakes to occur for staffers to grow.

But this week's Editor's Choice of the anonymous notes to the various boss' was from the reader who said simply, "Don't leave.   I am not ready to train another boss.   There's enough stress as is."

Thanks to everyone who took the time to share some thoughts (that we can now all share with our respective bosses!)