The Impact of a Bad Manager on Employees

The Impact of a Bad Manager on Employees’ Mental and Physical Health

 Mental health and physical health of employees has become a very popular topic in recent years as we have seen plenty of evidence that work stress and feeling unfulfilled can have catastrophic consequences on a person’s mental health.

In the early stages of research into this topic, companies were encouraged to have processes in place to nip workplace bullying in the bud, to give feedback on their wellbeing and most managers now have to undergo frequent training to develop their emotional intelligence.

But what happens when managers and companies don’t make an effort?

Can bad management be deadly?

Bad Management is Heavy on the Heart

Stress and anxiety and emotional wellness has been the biggest topic of leadership in recent years, but it’s been discovered that the physical impact can be just as deadly.

Researchers at the Stress Institute at Stockholm University discovered that the risk of angina, heart attack and death increases when someone works under a toxic boss.

3,100 men between 19 and 70 years of age had their hearts checked between 1992 and 1995 and then had their hospital records studied up to 2003.

There were 74 cases of fatal and nonfatal heart attacks and bad bosses increased the risk of heart disease by 24%!

The longer the employees worked for a bad manager, the worse the effect – in fact, those who worked for a bad boss for more than 4 years were 64% more likely to suffer heart disease than those that didn’t.

Support Goes a Long Way

A study published by the Journal of Business and Psychology found that the amount an employee feels supported by their boss has a great impact on their happiness.

Bosses who support, help and facilitate productivity contribute to happiness and lack of support decreases it.

This sounds obvious in theory, but the researchers discovered through a series of surveys that 95% of managers did not understand that this productivity and progress toward a goal was the most important factor for employee engagement and happiness. Is it just as common for the boss to be a cause of stress unknowingly?

YES! A study by the American Psychological Association found that 75% of participants say their boss is the most stressful part of a workday!

Symptoms of a Bad Manager 

It’s important for employees and company leaders to look for the signs of a bad manager so they can step in before any serious health complications arise.

According to many different studies, employees who dislike their boss report similar signs:

  • Belittling and put downs
  • Temper tantrums and raising their voice
  • Unreasonable expectations and not understanding their employees are human with other obligations and values that don’t revolve around work
  • Failure to lead by example – bosses who don’t get their hands dirty are the worst

No one wants to work for a boss or for a company that’s going to deplete their mental health, or their physical health and the workforce is going to have a very large problem if sickness, stress and heart disease continues to increase.

That’s why it’s crucial that managers and leaders continue their learning with accredited courses, listen to their staff and take on feedback. What are you or your company doing to ensure a happy and healthy work team?


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