Managers: the Good, the Bad, and the Ugly (Part IV)


The Cowboy – The Ugly

One story tells it all …

As normal during a northwest winter, an ice storm was fast approaching the area. Freeways and bridges were on alert for closure and city officials were asking for emergency driving only. The manager, Mike, called each of us and told us not to drive until the storm passed. Safety is more important than working computers (as field engineers it was our job to keep the area computers running). We happy complied and hunkered down for the day.

Next thing we hear was that Mike was out on the freeways in his VW Rabbit doing cookies – the Cowboy.

That in fact was his management style. Always looking for the un-doable task so that he could ride in and rope it to the ground. The style was inspirational, but hardly thoughtful and organized. We produced the desired results in the territory but it was like working inside the OK Corral at times. We hustled from job to job, fulfilled promises, and worked in a helter-skelter manner.

Lesson learned – organization and planning create a better work place.