You may not hate your boss — or you may want to murder him — but there’s a decent chance you don’t think he does a very good job. That’s because a recent study found that one in three employees don’t believe his or her boss is effective. That’s an awful lot of supervisors who aren’t teaching their employees much of anything.
Or are they? It might all depend on how you view your boss. Since there are plenty of movies that revolve around obnoxious, stupid, or truly sadistic bosses, we decided to ask Lisa Rangel, recruitment professional and Managing Director of Chameleon Resumes, to give us her take on what you can learn from some of moviedom’s most horrible bosses. (Including one from, uh, Horrible Bosses.)
BERNIE LOMAX | WEEKEND AT BERNIE’S (1989)
The story: Two underlings are commended for uncovering a $2 million fraud, then double-crossed and almost murdered by their jerk boss who was behind it all.
Rangel says:“Bernie fronted like he was happy to learn about the fraud but, in the end, he was more interested in protecting his best interests. You may be friends with your boss or get props from your boss. But if it comes down to you versus his business, you don’t stand a chance.”
MIRANDA PRIESTLY | THE DEVIL WEARS PRADA (2006)
The story: A notoriously difficult magazine editor makes life hell for an eager young assistant who finds herself getting caught up in the fashion world’s goofy superficiality. (Her disapproving boyfriend is played, ironically, by a guy from Entourage.)
Rangel says: “Don’t look to your boss to inflate your ego. You must make yourself happy and not expect your boss to recognize you. Use the experience to discover your strengths, and take pride in your performance in other ways. And leverage the position to land your next gig.”
ERIC LASSARD | POLICE ACADEMY (1984)
The story: Good-hearted, completely incompetent, super horny police recruits deal with the clueless eccentricity of their Commandant.
Rangel says: “Who wouldn’t want a boss like Commandant Lassard? He has shown that he can be easily stroked to get what you want. It doesn’t hurt to know how to play a good political game in the office.”
KENNY “PIG VOMIT” RUSHTON | PRIVATE PARTS (1997)
The story: Radio host Howard Stern butts heads with his epicly douchey program manager at WNNNNNNBC!, and the only way Stern can beat him is to beat all of the other radio stations in the ratings.
Rangel says: “It’s painful to work for a corporate pawn, but it can be motivation to get the hell out and start your own business. Think about all the things he did wrong, then do the opposite when you’re in charge.”
FRANK CROSS | SCROOGED (1988)
The story: Cross is bears a striking resemblance to Ebeneezer Scrooge from Charles Dickens’ A Christmas Carol, complete with cold-hearted employee dismissals and general dickishness. So he’s visited by three ghosts who set him straight.
Rangel says:“Don’t waste your time trying to change the boss — if you’re looking to change them and make them socially conscious, it won’t work. Instead, if your goal is to climb to the top, align your goals with theirs and learn how they became successful.”