Chapter 5. On the Origins of Abrasion: Why They Do It

Abrasive bosses rely on aggression and domination to survive professionally and psychologically. They believe that intimidating coworkers into competence (by making you pay if you get in their way) ensures the preservation of their dominant status. This leads us to the inevitable question: why don't all bosses respond to incompetence with abrasive behavior? The answer is simple: not all bosses are personally threatened by incompetence. True, if your employees don't function adequately, that could threaten your production, but if you're an adequate boss, it won't threaten you personally. It won't change how you see yourself—it won't alter your self-image as a competent (good enough) boss. ...

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