It’s tough at the top, or so say those already there. But is that just a ruse to dissuade others from competing for the best jobs? Well, it certainly can be lonely at the top and there are other disadvantages to management. For a start, there is always someone after the manager’s job, the buck stops with the manager, there is no instant reward for a job well done and a manager has legal obligations that other workers do not have to worry about.
It may be a little extreme to suggest that nobody likes the boss, but a manager does have to be a little removed from other employees if they are to make the hard decisions objectively. If an employee is promoted to a management role, their former friends can become cold and distant very quickly. Even an experienced manager brought into a company from elsewhere will find employees more aloof than they are with one another.
Despite the relative solitude of management, there is never a shortage of employees keen to manage. Many of these would-be managers are convinced they could do a better job than the incumbent boss and will do everything in their power to get the chance to prove it.
Rivals Ready to Pounce
No matter how high a manager climbs within a company, there will others viewing that managers progress with envious eyes. In fact, as there are a fewer top management posts in any organization, there is more competition for them. Even the chief executive officer has people within their own firm and at other companies ready and willing to put them aside. One wrong decision and these rivals can pounce.
It’s not easy for a manager to gauge the quality of their work, either. Goals tend to be long-term perhaps quarterly or even annual, and it takes even longer to judge the real measure of a manager’s success, namely an improvement in their people management skills.
Of course, a good manager should delegate and allow employees to make many of their own decisions, yet the ultimate responsibility for any final decision, right or wrong, rests with the manager. On top of that, many managers have legal obligations to keep employees safe and ensure the workplace is free from harassment. If a manager fails in any of these responsibilities, they could be held legally liable.
Disadvantages of Management
Depending on an individual’s point of view, there are other aspects of management that can be seen as disadvantages. For instance, a manager may have to undergo additional training as and when the company sees fit, or listen to long-winded speeches at countless seminars. There may even be a need to provide hands-on training for other employees, a task that can deplete vast resources of patience and empathy.
Those still determined to manage, irrespective of the responsibility, uncertainty and solitude, have very probably found their calling. It is uncertainly not the right career path for everyone, but if the advantages outweigh the disadvantages, it may be worth taking the plunge.