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How Common Are Bad Bosses?

Benjamin Artz, Amanda H. Goodall () and Andrew Oswald
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Amanda H. Goodall: Cass Business School

No 11825, IZA Discussion Papers from Institute of Labor Economics (IZA)

Abstract: Bosses play an important role in workplaces. Yet little is currently known about a foundational question. Are the right people promoted to be managers, team leaders, and supervisors? Gallup data and the famous Peter Principle both suggest that incompetent bosses are likely to be all around us. This paper's results uncover a different, and more nuanced, conclusion. By taking data on 35 nations, the paper provides the first statistically representative international estimates of the extent to which employees have 'bad bosses'. Using a simple, and arguably natural, measure, the paper calculates that approximately 13% of Europe's workers have a bad boss. These bosses are most common in the Transport sector and large organizations. The paper discusses its methodology, performs validation checks, and reviews other data and implications.

Keywords: job satisfaction; leadership; bosses; well-being (search for similar items in EconPapers)
JEL-codes: J28 I31 M54 (search for similar items in EconPapers)
Pages: 43 pages
Date: 2018-09
New Economics Papers: this item is included in nep-hrm, nep-lma and nep-ltv
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Journal Article: How Common Are Bad Bosses? (2020) Downloads
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