The Top Five Crimes of Crummy Managers

Or, you can simply console yourself with the fact that in these budget-conscious times, a boss who's all sloth and no action is on the fast track to pink-slip city.

Relying Too Heavily on Motivational Posters

In his last employee position, Barry, who's now a sales trainer and motivational speaker based in Helendale, Calif., had a well-meaning manager who was so misguided she made Michael Scott, the boss on "The Office," look like he had a clue.

Though most of her team were trying to watch their waistlines, Barry's ex-boss peppered the office with candy dishes. She also pumped in Muzak, much to everyone's dismay. But the icing on the cake, he said, was her hanging motivational posters throughout the office and requiring everyone to take a turn creating a mantra.

"She had no idea at all how to motivate people," Barry told me. "She was not a bad person, but she was in her own world. Completely annoying would probably be an understatement."

Again, I have two words for employees with equally clueless managers: workforce reduction. It happened to Barry's former boss, and if your company's cutting costs this year, there's a decent chance it will happen to yours too.

In the meantime, if you and your coworkers decide to complain to HR about any off-the-wall or overly inappropriate behavior on your manager's part, complain individually, Jansen said.

"Avoid that schoolyard approach," she advised. Better to let the complaints rack up and the evidence mount.

Then take solace in the fact that when you get promoted to a management slot, you'll know exactly what not to do.

This work is the opinion of the columnist and in no way reflects the opinion of ABC News.

Michelle Goodman is a freelance journalist, author and former cubicle dweller. Her books — "My So-Called Freelance Life: How to Survive and Thrive as a Creative Professional for Hire" and "The Anti 9-to-5 Guide: Practical Career Advice for Women Who Think Outside the Cube" -- offer an irreverent take on the traditional career guide. More tips on career change, flex work and the freelance life can be found on her blog,

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