Rule No. 1: Sometimes you can complain about the company to your peers, but never complain about the company to your subordinates or superiors. Learn what else you can do to become a better manager. 

Rule No. 1: Sometimes you can complain about the company to your peers, but never complain about the company to your subordinates or superiors.


Think about it as a manager. Are you going to promote someone who continually complains to you about the company? I think not. Now let’s look at the other side of the coin. How motivated would you be if your boss was continually saying the company is lousy, doing poorly and is badly run? You may be motivated to update your resume and find a new job.


Remember, as a manager, you’re part of the management team. This means the following:




You’re the voice of the company to those who report to you.

Your job is to assist senior management in meeting their objectives.

It’s your responsibility to take senior management’s vision and adapt it to your department.

You’re a representative of your company to vendors, clients, government agencies, and the press.

If you don’t follow company rules and/or work to support company goals, it will affect your raise, your bonus, your upward mobility and possibly your job.

That said, if your company is doing something dishonest or illegal, it is a different matter. But you cannot ignore your company’s new marketing plan or vacation policy because you would have, personally, designed them differently.


A number of years ago, I reported to one of my favorite managers. When she made decisions I didn’t like or agree with, she allowed me to raise my concerns. Sometimes she agreed with me and the decision was modified. Other times, she stayed with her original decision and I would work diligently to follow her instructions.


This worked out well for both of us. I knew I could safely present my concerns without fear of punishment, and she knew that, once a final decision was made, I would follow her direction regardless of my personal feelings. When working with your staff, I suggest that you treat your staff the way my boss treated me, with openness and respect.


Other decisions may be made above your manager’s level, thus making it very difficult, or impossible, for you to directly challenge or affect new company policies, procedures and/or initiatives. In these cases, consider the following:




Follow the internal rules and procedures on company-wide hiring, performance review, budget planning and other processes. These systems can only work efficiently if everyone in the company does them the same way.

Support official company policies, even if you don’t personally like them or agree with them ­­–– it’s your job as part of the management team.

Talking bad about your company to other employees may be viewed as very unprofessional, particularly to those who like or agree with the policy/procedure that you are badmouthing.

The primary advice and takeaway for today’s column is to know that:




Managers of all levels are part of the company management team and must work to help meet corporate goals and objectives.

As part of the management team, you represent your company in all vendors, clients, government agencies and press interactions, so act accordingly in all circumstances.

You’re the voice of the company to those who report to you. As a result, your interaction with your staff must be consistent with company policies, practices, and procedures.

Until next time, manage well, manage smart, and continue to grow.


Eric P. Bloom is president and founder of Manager Mechanics LLC, a training company, and author of “Manager Mechanics: Tips and Advice for First-Time Managers.” Contact him at eric@ManagerMechanics.com or visit www.ManagerMechanics.com.