Three Glaring Signs That Your Management Is Abusive

2 min read · 6 years ago


Recruiting agencies are
charging up to 30% first year salary placement fees these days. At the
top of that fee range, a new hire could cost a company $30,000 just to
hire someone making an annual salary of $100,000. Good talent is hard to
find, even harder to keep, and very expensive to acquire. But, think
about how expensive it is to lose good talent once they’ve been hired,
or to have good talent avoid applying for jobs with your company because
of a reputation for bad management.  

has always been a subject of fierce debate, especially in a country
like America, where people do not like to be told what to do. But, there
is a fine line between employees following orders and feeling abused.

of start-ups are in a vulnerable position when the company gets big
enough to begin hiring professional managers. They think managers are
there to do whatever it takes to meet goals, increase productivity and
ultimately increase profitability. So, if it takes a little arm
twisting, intimidation, and threatening, they might be inclined to
overlook it, at least while revenues are growing. What small business
owners may not realize is that managers can use a few scare tactics out
of the ole trick box to increase revenues short term, but, long term,
all of those Gestapo methods will probably backfire.

recognize some of the signs of an abusive management, small business
owners need to keep an eye out on these three glaring signs:

Silence. Step in on your management’s next meeting with staff, and see
what kind of Q&A there is afterwards. Even better, listen out for
any criticism. The lack of openness and feedback among staff may be an
indicator that they are afraid to share their thoughts, for fear of
being fired or punished.

Monitor Company Ratings. Check websites like for employee
feedback on work culture. There are always a few complaints, so don’t
read into a single negative post, but look for trends, and common
complaints across many posts.

Creativity Plunge. One of the first things to go when management is
abusive is the creativity among staff, the will to try new things, and
innovate. When it feels like the company is mired in convention, and not
able to keep up with current trends, it may be a sign that it’s time to
replace management.

are many other red flags that arise at the outset of poor management,
so it’s important for small business owners to stay vigilant in
monitoring how employees feel about working at their companies. The
feeling people have about where they work creates the company culture.
The difference between good and bad management will determine the
success or failure of a company’s culture, which has a huge impact on
long term profitability.  

Contact Jonathan Poston at