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Rebels at Work by Debra Cameron, Carmen Medina, Lois Kelly

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Chapter 10. Give This Chapter to Your Boss

As a rebel, you may want to give this chapter to your boss so that she can better appreciate your value.

As a boss, you may want to understand how to support and lead people in your organization who are constantly trying to change things and introduce new ideas. Then again, you may be a skeptical boss wondering, “Just who are these rebels and what are their motivations?”

Dear Boss,

The first and most important thing to understand about managing a rebel is that this person is not your enemy or even necessarily a troublemaker. In fact, he could be your most valuable employee, helping you identify risks, solve problems, and create better ways to work. The second thing to realize is that many of the young, talented people coming into the workforce think that you want new ideas. They are native rebels who assume that part of their job responsibility is to find ways to improve things at work.

Leaders today talk about the need for more innovative and authentic work environments so that problems can be solved faster, unnecessary bureaucracy trimmed, and opportunities seized. This is exactly what rebels can help you with. It’s what they are especially equipped to do, intellectually and temperamentally.

That said, we realize as former managers of rebels ourselves how tiring it can be to supervise someone who constantly generates ideas, asks endless questions, provokes controversy, and occasionally shows frustration and anger that feel uncomfortable or ...

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