Do Your Employees Fear you, or Respect you?

Mark Gordon Brown By Mark Gordon Brown, 28th May 2010 | Follow this author | RSS Feed | Short URL
Posted in Wikinut>Business>Employment

Most Employers say they want their staff to respect them, however they behave in old style ways where they “boss” their employees around and belittle them. This does not earn you respect, and will result in negative employee actions, and a loss of productivity.

Fear Based Management

This method of management has its roots in two of the most heinous aspects of humanity. Control through fear exists in slavery and the military mindset that accompanies war.

Employees are controlled through witnessing poor treatment of their co-workers and a fear of the same occurring to them if they complain or step out of line.

This disallows honesty in the workplace for fear of the whip, firing squad,or in modern times – firing, loss of a job. Employers and Employees in this system can never truly be honest with each other. This system allows the manipulation and resentment that comes about through the practice of “Brown Nosing”. This system promotes the employees who sabotage one another, and at times their employer. In this system a business can not reach it's best potential because the egos of employers and management will not allow them to hear complaints or suggestions . Employees are either afraid to make suggestions for improvement, or punished when they do make suggestions for improvements, or point out overlooked errors, because it hurts the employers ego.

These employers do not want to hear complaints or dissatisfaction remarks from their staff. They only want to hear good things. Only hearing good things does not allow improvements to be made or errors to be amended.

You may think you know your employees when you run this system, but you really don't. Fear based Management means that you will never know anyone truly, and no one will ever know you. This leads to all manner of social and personal ills. Slavery in most of the world has been abolished and the militaries are of the world can only hold their power with the threat of death or court marshal. Do you really want to run your company this way?

Fear Based Management leads to higher employee turnover and thus loss of capital, investment, time and resources. Higher turn over of staff increases training expenses of new staff. Also it creates resentment of the employer and may lead to staff theft and disloyalty. Production is lower because employees really don't care if you succeed or not, and may actually want you (personally) to fail.

Many employers who act in this style of management may not even be aware of it.
They behave this way out of fear themselves, as they are fearful that if they cut their employees any slack, the employees will take advantage of them. Perhaps some will, its a simple matter of repremanding those employees privately or getting rid of them if they continue to abuse their rights. However, if they treat their employees as people, they might actually see a benefit instead.

Respect Based Management

There are very few companies, or employers, who have enough self esteem to follow this method. A respect based employer is decent and fair. A respect based employer willingly listens to the complaints of their employees and recognizes that not everything is always perfect.

Very few people in the world are totallly honest. People hate honesty as it is a hard pill to swallow. If an employer wants their business to reach it's best potential then they must be willing to hire people who will tell them the truth. “YES-Men” or Women should be sent packing. A good employer needs to be able to see through the brownnosing.

Employers must be willing to listen to employees that will tell them “No, this can not be done like that”, “This is not working right”, or “Customers don't like this” without taking it personally. If management takes on a “God-Complex” they will lose respect and foster resentment.

If you want every thing “simple and to the point” and everything “sunshine and roses”, then management most likely is not the ideal position for you. Simply because somethings are not “simple and to the point”. “Bottom lines” are not always concrete or accurate. If you are a person that just wants the “bottom line”, let's hope you have a lot of money already and all those above that bottom line have personal integrity. Because the “Bottom Line” can be deceptive and often is.

Management should always remember that brown nosers and workplace saboteurs will stab them in the back just as quickly as they will their fellow employees. Management should, just as Judges, never except gifts, cards, or anything to that effect from individual employees. An employee who sucks up to their boss does not respect the boss, and other employees see it. This is one of the biggest reasons for workplace trauma and drama.

To gain respect a boss needs to be faiir, willing to listen to everyone, and not play favorites. They need to understand that if an employees work is done there may be time for them to stand around and rest, or talk to their co-workers, without fear of being yelled at or told to find something to do just to look busy.

A respect based employer realizes that everyone has bad days but does not let people walk all over them taking advantage of their good nature. A respect based employer has rules based on logic, not power.

Of Course, Respect works both ways...

An employer who respects their staff does not talk down to them and does not “micro-manage” them. An employer who respects their staff allows their staff to have input on how the business is run.
An employer who respects their staff willingly admits sometimes an employee may know more than they do.

Employees who respect their employer will be harder working, more loyal, and will stick around longer.
Employees who respect their employer will not look for opporunties to slack off or steal from their boss, they would feel guilty to do so (not scared).


Employ, Employee, Fear, How To, Improve, Job, Manage, Management, Manager, Motivate, Motivation, Respect, Staff, Style, Work

Meet the author

author avatar Mark Gordon Brown
Raised in Michigan, I have a son who recently joined the Military. I am living in Canada with my wife where we have a hobby farm.

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author avatar PR Mace
28th May 2010 (#)

I think a good manager should have your respect but most I have worked for or have seen, seem to like fear.

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