Management Entitlement: The Actual Problem At Your Company

Almost everyone I talk to these days who’s over the age of 50 always complains about the The Entitled Managerentitlement of young employees. Some have even gone to say that being “entitled” is the worst characteristic in a young budding employee. I’m not arguing this point, I think it’s valid. What I am seeing more and more of though is management entitlement.

You know these managers. They expect employees to work harder than they do because they’ve been around since the great depression and have more management experience that Drucker himself. The owner who thinks they can run their company in an autocratic style, fast-forward a couple years and this chap can’t figure out why none of his employees have ever invited him out for a pint and turnover is thru the roof.

You can lie to employees for a while and still make money as a business. But sooner or later the market will find out, it always does. Information travels too quickly.

The entitled manager spends more on training new staff and turnover than he does on creating a visionary company and incentivizing employees to help him grow the company.

You’ll hear the entitled manager say things like:

“Why would we change? We’ve been doing it this way for 30 years!”

“You should just be happy you have a job, do you know how many people would love to have your job?”

“You can make all the decisions you want but just so you know I have 51% of the vote, what I say goes.”

“A thank you? Their thank you is the paycheck they get every month.”

“Here’s why you’re wrong (insert pretty much anything at this point)”

Beware of the boss/manager who places blame on other shoulders. It’s easier to do that anyway. An entitled manager never thinks she’s the problem, always quick to come up with an excuse as to why it wasn’t her fault. The problem with blaming others though is that it gives you nothing to work on. If you’re always right, how do you get better? How do you improve?

If you have an entitled manager please do not send them this! That would be horribly embarrassing, instead send them a Ted Talk every day so at the very least they may start learning more? I don’t know. And how, good luck with that!

2 replies
  1. jephmaystruck
    jephmaystruck says:

    Peter, I’m humbled to have you on my website. I just finished reading Nice Companies Finish First, yes I’ll link to it. ( I loved it. So many great stories you tell in it, blog post is still to come. Your comment on entitlement in your blog post inspired the thought on entitled management, so thanks? And DUDE! I hear you on the Beancast all the time, you’re the funny one. Well you and George Parker, but only because he swears.
    I love your philosophy when it comes to business strategy, your book wasn’t just entertaining, there’s an underlying message of hope. Amazing.
    I still can’t believe you were on my blog, very cool. I’m going to give your book to people as a prize in the next little while. Thanks a lot.


  2. Peter Shankman
    Peter Shankman says:

    Awesome post and so true. I talk a lot about entitled management in my new book, “Nice Companies Finish First.” I won’t link to it here, this isn’t a promotional comment. But it’s so true – And when you look at companies that are failing or no longer in the lead, 99% of the time, you can trace it back to an entitled management force.

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