Being a Boss – It ain’t easy

Being the Boss………It ain’t easy

While bosses are bosses, it is not just easy to be a boss. Bosses have their own problems, arising out of their responsibilities, and because of this, they often tend to be under stress. A list of the problems a boss has to face are listed below:

Manage subordinates

Simply because you are the boss doesn’t mean that you can have your own way, come whatever may. Managing the people under you is the biggest challenge for the boss.
The easiest way to succeed is to build a good relationship with those working under your guidance. If the relationship is good, you can sail smoothly. Relationship is like a garden, as mentioned by Gray, and needs continuous nurturing through watering, manure etc.

Make crucial decisions

Your ability to take decision is another quality in which you will be judged – both by your subordinates and also by your superiors. Here, one would need to take into account all relevant facts pertaining to the matter under examination. You have to also ensure that your decisions are the most appropriate in the given circumstance and leave no room for being questioned. You should also ensure that the decisions are not clouded by partiality or bias towards one set of people.

Ability to lead teams

It should be realized that whatever you achieve is the result of a combination of factors. The views and ideas given by your subordinates should be given due consideration and weightage and they should be able to feel that they have also contributed to the final decision, howsoever small that may be. Also such contributions need to be acknowledged.

Developing subordinates

Bosses should command respect. Rather than your proclaiming and trumpeting about your being the boss, your way of functioning should be such that you are able to command respect, and your subordinates should try to emulate you. . Respect should always be commanded and not demanded – the latter could amount to tyranny. Bosses need to train, guide, counsel and develop his subordinates to be able to discharge higher responsibilities as also fulfill their own ambitions

Set examples/be role models

Bosses should take care that their actions are exemplary and subordinates should look upon him as a role model. All your actions should match your preachings. You should always walk the talk. Like a magnet bosses should be able to attract and pull his subordinates towards him, and to be with him.

Ability to delegate

As a boss, while you may have an overall responsibility to manage your subordinates.
You should appropriately delegate your responsibilities, so that employees working under you feel empowered. They could also aim to grow through delegation. A boss who is able to get things done will get admiration and be really effective.

Manage the organization

To ably manage all the above tasks, bosses of course have in their hands authority and power. The authority and power are vested in him conforming to the status or position that he holds I’n the organization. These are the tools through which he could get things done, things for which he is responsible.


So, when you are due to move up the ladder in your career, with the responsibility to lead a group or a team, be prepared to cultivate the above qualities so that you are able to enjoy feeling ‘I am the boss now’. Forget about the stress factor, since this has a positive side too. According to a study by James Gross of Stanford University and six other researchers of his group (HBR blog ), the higher people go as a leader, the less stress they experience. This is because, while top leaders might have plenty of stress, they also have lots of rewards (literally activations of the reward centre in their brain) that offset this stress. They obviously have very high status, which is said to be more important in terms of personal happiness.’ So, move on to the top, to be the boss, to be the leader.


About cvsubramaniam

Former Director, Department of Electronics & Informatiin Technology, Government of India.. Authored Book on Human Resource Management. Published 80 plus articles on HR, Management, S&T, general topics.
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