Website of the Week: eBossWatch

Many readers of this blog are familiar with eBossWatch (link here), the popular website founded by businessman Asher Adelman that chronicles the stories of bosses you’d least like to work for, but for the uninitiated, I’d like to call this to your attention.

100 worst bosses

Every year, eBossWatch assembles its list of the nation’s 100 worst bosses, as judged by a panel of experts in employment relations, organizational behavior, and workplace consulting. It serves as an important reminder that bad bossism remains a part of the work experiences of so many workers. Through links to relevant news stories, we also learn more about specific situations that led to including someone on the list.

Two Bay State bosses on the 2010 list

Two Massachusetts bosses share the dubious distinction of making 2010 “Worst Bosses” list (link here):

  • Dentist Nelson Wood of Affordable Care, Brookline, MA, is No. 22.
  • Lieutenant Barbara Bennett of the Massachusetts State Police is No. 87.

Next step: Understanding organizational cultures

Most bad bosses also happen to work at organizations that enable and/or protect their behaviors. In fact, some of the accounts of bad boss behavior detail how employers ignored complaints from workers about sexual harassment, bullying, and ethical lapses.

eBossWatch serves a valuable function in highlighting the continuing abuse that workers experience. If we want to tackle these horrible behaviors more pro-actively, we also need to get at the organizational cultures that fuel them.

2 responses

  1. I’ve known about eboss-like sites, but I’m curious. If the bad bosses are named along with their companies, is there a potential for legal backlash for libel?

    (Even if you state your specific experiences)?

    • If statements are defamatory — i.e., knowingly false and harmful — they may be grounds for a libel suit. This is a legitimate and serious concern for any site that attempts to identify the “worst of” anything. But it appears that eBossWatch is careful to ground its rankings and lists in accounts that have been verified by a respectable news source or a findings by a court or administrative tribunal.

      It is telling that most of the listed bosses are engaging in activities such as sexual harassment or discriminatory treatment. Because so much workplace bullying is not prohibited under modern employment laws, many of the worst bosses escape accountability in a public forum such as this one.

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