The word “boss” has virtually come to mean “bad boss.” Just take it from Steve Carell in The Office. If you know about “Terrible Office Tyrants” or TOTs, you know that everyone is capable of having their moments of being a bad boss or TOT. So that's why some self-reflection is always a good idea—to ensure we channel our emotions into manageable, socially acceptable ways in the workplace. Take the quiz below and see how you stack up on the TOT-meter.
We all witness regressions reminiscent of bad bosses, with managers, employees, clients, relatives, friends, clerks, and just about every mortal we come across. Why? Because we’re all human, and whether we’re two or 52, we still share all the same basic feelings of fear, power, love, hunger, anger, wanting praise, recognition, appreciation, and so on.
Outward appearances are different, of course. You won’t find your boss showing off his new tricycle; or coworker choosing apple juice in a plastic, pink sippy cup over a designer label caffe latte. But all in all, the core, parallel emotions are all there. (Could that be why emojis have so much universal appeal?)
So here’s a different slant on the subject. The anti-TOT (Terrible Office Tyrant) or good boss. How do you measure up, not just in terms of emotional intelligence, but also as a leader and mentor? Take this quiz and see how you score. This is not a scientific test, but it’s based on quantitative and anecdotal research compiled over more than 20 years by Lynn Taylor Consulting. How do these phrases and adjectives describe you in the office?
Mark Y for excelling at the trait. Mark N for needing to improve at the trait; and find out where you stand on the TOT-meter.
I am (or this describes me at work):
Now add up how many times you indicated “yes.”
- Did you score 57+? You are the anti-TOT…an amazing boss; congratulations!
- Did you score between 48-56? You’re definitely a good boss...and with some minor work, you could be an awesome boss.
- Did you score 35-47? You have some good boss traits but, caution; if you're on the lower end of the scale, you're nearing the TOT-zone. Consider reading about the subject, get some coaching and seek feedback from your team.
- Less than 34? You have landed in the TOT-zone. Definitely seek management training and/or coaching, solicit team feedback and do some reading on the subject of becoming a better manager. It will be well worth the effort for your job and future.
Just the fact that you took the quiz demonstrates you have the desire for self-improvement—the first step in becoming a better boss and advancing in your career.