7 Signs of Dysfunction
Jun 14 2012

Chinese Dragon

I recently read an article called Workplace conflict is a management problem via either my University of Texas at Austin Business School or the LinkedIn email newsletters.  That article linked to a couple of others called 7 signs of a dysfunctional company and 7 signs of a dysfunctional boss.  Check out also 7 Signs You May Be a Bad Manager.  If only there were just 7 dysfunctions!

We are all dysfunctional in some way (not sure if I’ve ever met a “normal” person) but when parents, companies, and bosses are exceptionally dysfunctional (i.e., abusive, extremely disorganized, inconsistent, non-responsive, abandon their kids/employees, have an untreated medical/psychological condition, have zero empathy, etc.), it has a negative ripple effect on everything around them.

Anyone who has managed people has probably had times in their careers where they were exceedingly dysfunctional for professional, personal, or medical reasons.  The best people I’ve worked with have done a lot of self examination/exploration, took time to learn from their mistakes, and can extrapolate how their behaviors effect those around them as well as the achievement of the goals of the organization.  This is why there are very few great leaders and managers and tons of books and articles on the topic written mostly by people who aren’t currently managing or leading an organization (or never have managed but are good academic observers and researchers) because they finally have the time to write about their experiences!


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6 Comments on “7 Signs of Dysfunction”

  1. 1 Aditya said at 12:54 AM on June 20th, 2012:

    the 7 signs of dysfunction here are popularised taking all the top management bosses……..but what if the dysfunction is within the person who is critcising his superior or what if he is not sattisfied with the way his peers are treating him…..so its not compulsory that only top level management is held responsible for everything……..

  2. 2 Glenis said at 4:55 PM on June 22nd, 2012:

    You are right, we are all dysfunctional in some way. I’m not what the signs of dysfunction are but life has a way of being crazy and learning how to function and get along is just life. Of course there are those that can’t get along. I think one of those was my last boss.

  3. 3 Aruni said at 8:18 PM on June 25th, 2012:

    @Aditya – I agree with you. Each person should look within themselves to see what role they are playing in the dysfunction as he/she might find themselves in a leadership position one day!

    @Glenis – I have run a cross just a few people who simply can’t get along with anyone and it’s mostly due to their personalities and insecurities. They are too afraid to look inside of themselves so they keep blaming others for all their troubles.

  4. 4 Tanya Willis said at 1:55 PM on June 28th, 2012:

    I think a lot of managers struggle with being defensive from time to time, but as one article you reference points out, becoming defensive as a manager can ruin your career and cause your team to suffer. I actually recently created a quiz for prospective managers that helps people determine if they’re management material. You should check it out when you get a chance – http://www.prosperityequation.com/quiz/category/business-development

  5. 5 Aditya said at 11:37 PM on June 28th, 2012:

    @ Aruni – Absolutely true,everyone has to be a leader some day and then only one will realise the importance of being there and responsibilities he will have.So from the begining he should analyse the pros and cons of it so he can manage his subordinates well and lead them with confidence.

  6. 6 Aruni said at 9:01 PM on July 5th, 2012:

    @Tanya – thanks for the comment and a link to your quiz. As humans it’s hard for us not to become defensive sometimes because as managers we can come under such scrutiny.