Meet Horrible Harry

Horrible Harry is a mid-level manager. Horrible Harry has been in the business for years and thinks he’s all that … and more.

Horrible Harry likes to do things like berate employees in public.  On a positive note, he does realize the inappropriateness of dropping the f-bomb during public shamings.  He saves those for private shamings. Actually, Horrible Harry drops the f-bomb liberally throughout a large percentage of any verbal communication.

Horrible Harry doesn’t believe in coaching.  Instead he keeps notes of all errors made (the list is only in his head, not on paper). Horrible Harry doesn’t ask why errors are made.  After all, there really is only one reason, right? The employee is stupid, uncaring and not motivated.  It would never cross his mind that perhaps the training wasn’t adequate or that expectations were unclear or inconsistent.

Horrible Harry doesn’t like his employees, but then again, he doesn’t really like his customers either.  Words and phrases like demanding, rude and ungrateful pop up regularly when he references his customers.  He thinks they ask stupid questions and doesn’t understand why they would be upset when a service promoted on the website isn’t available when they arrive.  After all, if they could offer it they would, but they can’t, so stop the whining.

Rather unsurprisingly, turn-over is high and morale is low in Horrible Harry’s department.  Customer comments are negative and when an employee does receive a positive mention, they never hear about it. Guess which ones they do hear about??

Sadly, dear readers, Horrible Harry is real.  Horrible managers, horrible supervisors exist, in all industries. They do things like send employees to customer service seminars in order to “whip them into shape” and then say things like “well, that was a waste of time and money” when customer comments don’t improve.

The mirror they look into every day is clouded. They don’t see that their lousy service and their poor attitude is the problem.  But of course, they are not the only problem.  They report to someone else, who allows that behavior to continue.  We’ll meet Harried Harriet another time.

P.S. To all the Happy, Helpful Harry’s out there, thank you for all the good work you do!

7 thoughts on “Meet Horrible Harry

  1. Pingback: And Finally …. Waffling Walter

  2. Pingback: Move Aside Waffling Walter. Today is Positive Friday.

  3. Pingback: Introducing Harried Harriet

  4. I know him, he was my boss. Emphasis on was. For instance, I was responsible for a research project which resulted in 1500 documents, a 64 page report I wrote in a week (half the amount of time allotted to my male coworkers I might add), all while working with a database that was still in development mode. I brought it in on time and under budget. His response? Let’s have a debriefing on what went wrong. Really? And he wondered why my enthusiasm for his business was less than stellar.

    • First of all congratulations for taking on a daunting challenge and coming in on time and under budget. I would venture to guess that if you had to do it all over again, there might be some things you would do differently. It’s all part of the process. But Horrible Harry’s tend to ignore all the good stuff, the successes, the accomplishments and instead nitpick and focus only on what they think should or could be done differently and then wonder why morale is low and turnover is high.

  5. I know a guy like this in my town….owns a few pizza places…he has zero regard for staff and is not nearly as careful about the “F-Bomb” as one would hope. Somehow, he stays in business. I guess pizza is a recession proof commodity.

    • They are everywhere! I actually hear comments from the Horrible Harry’s of this world that go something like “Look, we’re still open, we’re turning a profit, so what do you know?” And my response to that is .. “If you think you’re successful now, think how much more successful you could be if you treated your employees and customers with respect.” Employees and customers talking smack about a business means fewer people walking through the door. It won’t stop all, but it will stop many. There are some places I absolutely refuse to go to simply because of their policies and attitude toward their employees and customers. I am only one person, but I can influence others. Thanks for stopping by Ray. Have a wonderful weekend.

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