Why I Rejected My Manager


  1. They are too busy being busy. Autonomy and creative freedom can certainly have its benefits, but it is a problem when you cannot reliably reach your manager (especially in times of escalation). Say for example, they are always in super important meetings because of their super important role and have no time for unimportant interruptions. It isn’t always intentional; it could be a vibe that is unknowingly projected.
  2. They don’t know what you are working on. For first time managers, it may take some time to balance personal workload and leadership expectations. I find it questionable when a manager does not know the role I play or the work I do. This is more of a cultural thing, and perhaps more prevalent in tech startups where wearing multiple hats is the norm, but it shows disorganization. It also gives me the sense that the manager doesn’t care, making it difficult to build rapport.
  3. They are never at fault. Another point that may be less obvious than it seems. Even when an individual makes a major mistake, my first reaction is always self reflection. What could I have possibly done differently to prevent this? Did I not communicate clearly? Did I not train the person properly? What role did I play in their error? I find it incredibly difficult to stand behind a manager who does not believe they are responsible for their team’s successes and failures.
  4. They do not know why. I like to understand the logic behind decisions or processes. When I hear the words: ‘I don’t know, this is just the way it is’ or ‘this is just what I was told,’ I can’t help but feel rebellious. It fuels my sense of independence and inspires me to figure things out on my own. Over time, I stop looking to my manager as a resource, and instead view them as someone that assigns work.
  5. They hire people exactly like them. It’s discouraging when I find myself on a team, in an echo chamber, where I don’t quite fit in. I’ve observed this a number of times, where individuals who are similar to a manager in terms of personality, working style, problem solving approach, seem to thrive. It takes experience and emotional intelligence to effectively manage people who are very different from you.
  6. They do not know how to compromise. In the scenario I described with Jane, part of the issue was the rejection of all my suggestions on how to improve communication. The conversations seem to always revert back to things I could do differently to work best with her, and not a “meet-in-the-middle” mentality.

“Our chief want is someone who will inspire us to be what we know we could be.”

— Ralph Waldo Emerson


Personal Growth

Sharing our ideas and experiences.

Mianya Ong

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shamelessly writing for validation. follow along if you like. and clap. that matters apparently. ¯\_(ツ)_/¯

Personal Growth

Sharing our ideas and experiences.