Inside this episode

In today’s episode I am joined by Ken Corey Co-Author of the book behind todays question titled “Bad Bosses Ruin Lives, The building blocks for being a great boss”

Host: Aaron Rackley

Guest: Ken Corey

Book Recommendations:

Show Transcript

These transcripts where auto generated by Descript. If you see any issues, please do reach out and we can rectify the issues.


Ken Corey: [00:00:00] Even the greatest boss you can imagine has bad boss behaviors. Yeah. Even the worst boss you can imagine has some things they're doing right.

Aaron Rackley: Mm hmm.

Ken Corey: So, this is not a permanent state. You're not good or bad. Don't put someone in a box. Don't put yourself in a box. Um, these are all things that can be worked on that can be improved over time and iterated on.

Aaron Rackley: Hey everyone, and welcome to the Tech Leadership Decoded podcast, where through conversations, we unravel the intricacies of leadership in the tech industry. My name is Aaron, and I am a tech lead here in London, UK. And in today's episode, I'm joined by Ken Corey, co author of the book behind today's question, titled Bad Bosses Ruin Lives The Building Blocks for Being a Great Boss.

I really hope you enjoyed today's episode. And if you do, please can you take a moment to like this episode and leave a review on the platform you're currently listening to it on, really helps us reach more people like you through that algorithm. And with that, let's get straight into today's episode.

Enjoy. [00:01:00]


Aaron Rackley: Ken, and welcome to the podcast. Thank you for coming on today.

Ken Corey: No, thanks for having me, Aaron.

Aaron Rackley: Yeah, absolutely. We were introduced by a former guest on the, on the podcast, Steve Flyer. And, um, He graciously sent me your way, and then showed, well, between you and him, explained to me The book, Bad Bosses Ruin Lives.

And, um, that'll be the question for today. But before we start getting into the book and what we're here to talk about, can you just give everyone a little five minute history of who Ken is?

Ken Corey: Uh, sure. Um, Ken has had a lot of lives. No, I'm not going to talk about, about myself in the third person. That's I've had a lot of lives in tech.

I've done front end, I've done database, I've done backend, I've done. Uh, all sorts of stuff. Um, I had a brief stint, well, actually not all that brief, uh, as a CTO a long time ago and really, really, truly messed it up. Um, [00:02:00] and in my career since then, uh, I've been sort of working back towards that to figure out kind of why.

Uh, about eight months, sorry, eight years ago, uh, my wife started really campaigning, you need to get into management. And I, and I, at the time I was like, no, I don't want to manage people. It's like herding cats. You just can't get them to go in the direction you want. It's impossible. Um, I have flip flopped on that now, and I'm all about the people and not so much about the technology.

I, I still love getting bits under my fingernails and pulling up a compiler. You know, that's, that's still really satisfying, um, but not nearly as satisfying as when you can see, uh, someone start, they spread their wings, they start to take off and then they actually start soaring and that's, That's the part of my job that I find the most satisfying now.

Aaron Rackley: I've, um, been a tech lead now for, well, just coming on two years before that. I was like senior dev team lead, you know, that kind of stuff. And, [00:03:00] um, I think, um, a big part of the management of becoming a tech lead that I like is obviously the people and try to figure out how to build and Grow teams. So I was excited when obviously Steve introduced us on the email because as soon as I read the blog type, uh, the book title, Sorry, I was in just on the title of the book.

So the title of the book for everyone listening is Bad Bosses Ruin Lives.

Ken Corey: But it is important to say the second part of the title though.

Aaron Rackley: Yeah, go on then.

Ken Corey: The building blocks for being a great boss. It's not just my wife and I, we co wrote this book and it's not just the two of us going, Oh yeah, I had that one boss.

I know he was a real jerk. You know, it's not just us whinging about bad bosses. Because we can all do that. Yeah, yeah, absolutely. Absolutely.

Aaron Rackley: Um, yeah. So what inspired mainly the forming of the book? [00:04:00]

Ken Corey: My wife is in human resources, uh, has been for quite a long time. She's well known in that industry. She's one of the top hundred influencers in the UK and so on and so forth.

She's, she knows her stuff. Um, and, uh, I had the, the, the privilege to go for a dog walk with her every day for an hour. We've had dogs for 20 some odd years, and so every day we'd, we'd walk and, How was your day, honey? Oh, my, my day was really awful. I had this, my boss did this thing. How about you? And, and we would go back and forth and we would talk about these things.

Um, and, uh, Eventually, it, it turned out that the, Broad strokes procedures behind, uh, uh, an HR program is very similar to behind a feature in software. You have to, uh, plan ahead. You have to figure out who your customer is. You have to figure out what you're trying to accomplish. You have to, um, get it out.

You have to test it. Then you have to get it out there and then you have to test them. You see what I mean? [00:05:00] Um, now obviously the details are different. They use policies. We use compilers and so on. But the broad strokes were very, very similar. And, and when we realized that, that was a, was a, was a real watershed moment for us.

So we started really comparing notes and realizing that we're seeing, um, well, what we eventually called bad boss behavior, uh, in most of the bosses we were dealing with. Um, and. You know, as we gathered more experience, and as we talked to more people, the story was similar to with every person that we spoke to, they all said, Oh my gosh, you know, the, the, my boss has done this and, and that could have been caused by this and how do we solve it?

And whatever. So. That was really sort of the, the nucleus. That was the seed of the book. That's how we got started. Um, and as, as we've gone on, uh, in, in the, the survey to do the research of the book, um, in the, in the writing of the book, um, [00:06:00] much to my chagrin, Deb and I both realized that at various points of time, we've been every single one of the types of bad bosses in the book.

It's kind of autobiographical.

Aaron Rackley: It's interesting because yeah, as, um, Obviously, uh, for the listeners, the first. Part of the book, cause it's two parts, right? The first part is step into, I can't remember now. Is it 12, 12 types of 10, 10, 10, yeah.

Ken Corey: 10 major bad boss behaviors and 14 building blocks to, to, to use, to avoid this, this, this, um, bad behaviors.

Aaron Rackley: And as you say, a bit autobiographical, cause I found that as well, as I was reading for it, I was finding little parts of self reflection as it were. Um, I don't want to go through all 10. But do you want to pick out one or two that you think, uh, you know, one or two that you think are most common pitfalls, maybe?

Ken Corey: Absolutely. Um, we actually, I mentioned we did a survey. Um, we did, we did [00:07:00] it in both directions. If you were a, uh, employee, um, what are the most common types of bad bosses that you see? And then the top three, I'm not going to go into huge detail, but the top three are unappreciator, micromanager, and avoider.

Right in roughly that order. Uh, and, and it, and Unappreciated is a boss that doesn't ever give praise. Mm-Hmm. . They get a paycheck. Why do they need a, uh, a, a, a pat on the back, right? Yeah. And that's all, that's all soft affy stuff. Why do we need to do that? Micromanager. We all know what a micromanager is.

And avoider is a boss you can never find, is never there. , right. Um, now. I also wanted to say that, that these are not labels to paste, well, to tattoo on somebody's forehead and say unappreciator. Right. These are, these are guidelines. These are things to be thinking about as a manager to avoid doing. So an unappreciator is a manager that doesn't say, that never says thank you, that never comes along and says, Oh, you did a great job there.[00:08:00]

Right. Now, um, The problem with this is that, uh, most managers think that appreciation is either, uh, a soft skill. And I use that phrase intentionally because there's, there's a, there's a connotation that goes along with that. Soft, i. e. feminine, i. e., uh, we don't do that around here because we're macho. You world take, were whatever, right?

Um, and, uh, it's not the case at all. And, uh, un uh, uh, appreciation just as a bad boss type, uh, it has hard, factual, uh, uh, business results that, that come along when you do it. Um, 14% higher engagement, 30%, uh, uh, increase in employee, uh, productivity. It drives business results, it reduces burnout and so on, right?

There's a lot of. Uh, uh, real factual things you get out of it. One of the other reasons that, that people sometimes are not, uh, uh, appreciative [00:09:00] of their employees is that they're afraid it's going to cost money. I don't want to give a prize. I don't want to give an award, whatever, because it's not in the budget.

When it doesn't, you know, appreciation doesn't need to cost the earth. It doesn't need to cost anything.

Aaron Rackley: Yeah.

Ken Corey: Um, you just need to be really, really careful when you give it to be specific. Okay. But Bob, you know, you, you did this one action. You, you, you looked at my code review early, and that meant that I was able to deliver the code to production three days early, that actually turns into money for an organization, right?

Um, by being that level of specific, who did it, what they did and what the outcome was, um, Even people who are uncomfortable with receiving praise are not going to be able to deny that. They're not going to say, Oh, you just don't know what you're talking about. You know, if I patted you on the back and say, uh, you know, Aaron at a boy, well done.

Well, for, for what, what does that mean? How do I use that? Why don't we learn from that? Right. But if I said, um, you know, Aaron, uh, well, in this case, Aaron, your podcasts, I, I love the [00:10:00] people that you have on there and I'm learning lessons and it's changing the way that I, uh, operate with the people on a, on a daily basis.

Now that's praise that means something, right? Yeah. Yeah. Um, I appreciate that. Praise. Thank you. Yeah. Um, uh, no, I said it that way. We're joking a little bit, but I said it before the show, but I mean, that is an example of, of, of what I'm talking about for appreciation that would make a difference. Yeah.


Aaron Rackley: Yeah. No, I, I am definitely one of those people to appreciate. being told a good job. I, I, I just, this, it happens to me a lot. If I spend months on something and it comes to an end, like a project for something, it goes on for six to seven months and it goes out the door and then it's just gone. And then your company's like, well, next one, work on the next one without any kind of anything around that ending.

You can, you, I've immediately feel defeated because that's, you know, Yeah. I'm like, well, what was the point then? So, yeah, [00:11:00] absolutely.

Ken Corey: So, uh, I think of all of them, unappreciator is the number one bad boss type that we need to defeat. Cause the benefits of being an appreciator are so significant. The costs are so low.

Um, why aren't we all doing this?

Aaron Rackley: I'm thinking it might be quite prevalent in tech, especially because. We, we tend to be a creative kind of problem solving bunch, right? So I imagine that we're not doing it for the paycheck half the time. We're not doing it for like, we just do it for the love of it. Cause we love solving.

We love, love building, love growing. Right. So I imagine that we do it to, to be like at the end, I've done it. Yes, I solved that problem. And, and to a little bit of, uh, you're like, Come on, appreciate that I did that.

Ken Corey: I think that's really perceptive, Aaron. I mean, I know myself, when I have solved something, when the computer finally bends to my will and prints, you know, hello world on the screen, I get a little glow.

Now for that, it would be a very [00:12:00] little glow, but I still, you know, if I get to do that in a new language, if I get to do that in a new way, I still get a sense of internal satisfaction. Yeah. And if I look around and I'm like, Hey, Hey guys, look, look how clever I am. Look, look, look, this is great. And nobody says anything.

Everybody's like, seriously, come on. We've got another, another task. Yeah. How are you going to feel? Right.

Aaron Rackley: Yeah, no, I totally agree. Um, I imagine, cause I know I wouldn't, but we don't intentionally set out to become a bad boss, right? I imagine we all start off with good intentions. So how does someone.

inadvertently become a bad boss, do you think? What's there?

Ken Corey: Such a good question. Um, the, the, we, we call them traps. The, the, the way that we fall into being a bad boss. First off, um, a lot of people are in a position of management because that's the next logical step. Uh, uh, step in the career ladder with an organization.

It's the, you know, [00:13:00] you've been there for three years. You have to get promoted. And when you get promoted, boom, now you have to be a team lead. Now you have to be a manager of some color and have people reporting to you. That's the only way to get that next step up the ladder. Um, and usually, especially in those organizations that don't provide a tech, uh, a tech channel to, to, to, uh, improve in, um, There's no training that goes in, goes along with it.

You're just, it's just assumed, boom, you know, we're going to promote you. And now you're going to be a manager. You better do good, good, good luck to you. Right? So there's no training going in. Um, there's no, uh, feedback going in. There's no, uh, support going in, in most organizations. So what this means is.

People are managing who don't want to manage. Um, they aren't supported, they aren't trained. Um, and so the, we're setting ourselves up for failure. If you're [00:14:00] asked to do a duty at work that you do not want to do, you're not going to spend any time thinking about how to do it correctly or very little time thinking about how to do it correctly, right?

You're going to do it the way that you were trained. Um, you know, when, when you went to school or when you had your first job or whatever, right? So the very first, uh, uh, uh, cause of this problem is no training, no support. And, uh, you were treated badly when you were a junior. And because of that, that's the behavior you think a manager is supposed to, to, to, to use.

I'm, you know, I'm going to pull out the stick, not the carrot.

Aaron Rackley: Yeah.

Ken Corey: Okay, fine. So you, you don't mean to be. You don't mean to be cruel. You don't mean to be destructive, but that's sort of the way it comes across, uh, to, to the employees. Um, the next thing that happens is you go to work as a manager and, you know, all of a sudden you realize that you are in back to back meetings all day long.

You've got no time [00:15:00] when you were an individual contributor, you complained about having two meetings in a day because it interrupted your flow. When you're a manager, now you're in back to back meetings all day long. You know, uh, the three amigos and birds of a feather and status updates and reports and blah, blah, blah.

I mean, just endless meetings.

Aaron Rackley: I have that, um, I say that joke all the time is that when you're a developer, you moan that your manager's always in meetings and you don't understand why. And then you can become a manager and you go, that's why.

Ken Corey: Um, and the problem then becomes, uh, you become an avoider.

You're a boss that can never be found. Nobody can ever see you. They can't get an answer from you. You can't, you don't have time. To answer your people's questions, to give them support. And the problem with these different bad boss types is they, they cascade. So you start out because you don't have time.

You're an avoider now, because you're an avoider. You're not giving your people the context and the information they need. You become an information [00:16:00] hoarder. Yeah, and because you're hoarding information at some point that turns into a crisis because your people don't have the right information and now you have to Storm in there's fires everywhere You become a firefighter because you're like stop what you're doing there work on this other thing over here So you can see how one leads to another leads to another


Ken Corey: I'm, I'm, I'm kind of going roundabout here. Let me go back to your original question of what, what happens, how do you, how do we become a bad boss? Um, the lack of support when you become a manager for the first time, lack of training, uh, no time. Um, and then also, uh, especially in tech, it feels, uh, to me anyway, um, no understanding of the importance of interpersonal skills.

Uh, I touched on these earlier, uh, there's, they're often called soft skills and a lot of techies go, well, soft skills, we don't need that around here. That's not even a little bit the case. We all need these things. [00:17:00] Even if you stay on the technical path, as you progress, eventually you become up to, you know, you become an architect and you still need soft skills to be able to convince people to follow your vision.

You still need to be able to, to, to communicate, you still need to be able to persuade and bring people along for the ride. And that, that's not the same thing at all as being the architect and saying, we're just going to use Java. We're just going to use this framework and, you know, it's not even close to the same thing.

Um, those are the biggest ones really.

Aaron Rackley: Yeah, no, it's, it's, it's one of the reasons I started the podcast and I've mentioned it a few times is in the podcast is that I read a lot of books since becoming a manager, um, but I wanted to have more conversations with people and peers that are doing the same job in different aspects and they all have different opinions because with all of this stuff, everyone has a lot of different opinions about the same thing.

And I like to try and get as much sides to the same [00:18:00] conversation before I try and make my own. You know, my own opinion on something. And I do find that sometimes, like you say, if you're working, if you come up in the same company and you go into the management spots there, you can kind of get stuck into the pigeonhole of what was there before.

Um, so apart from buying your book and reading it and understanding the 10, um, pitfalls, how can I start to notice, That I am potentially falling into some of these traps.

Ken Corey: Oh, man, you're lining these questions up so well for me. Thank you very much. Um, we have a website for the, for the book called badbossesruinlives.

com. Uh, on the, the website is a free assessment tool. It asks a series of questions. Uh, and at the end of, uh, those questions you end up with a report of which bad boss types you scored the highest in, the ones you need to focus on the most. Okay? Uh, for [00:19:00] the top three, um, we also list the building blocks that comprise those top three, um, uh, boss types.

So, one might be vulnerability, one might be feedback, one might be, uh, respect. Okay? Um, and, uh, uh, If you take the steps that are, that are detailed in the book, uh, you can, um, use those to improve the Bad Boss story. Uh, tendencies that you might have identified with, right? Um, now that we wanted that assessment tool to be free because we want you to, to re take it after some period of time, whether that's a month, a quarter, six months, whatever.

Um, we want people to take the test and get the PDF and save it at the end. Take the test again after some period of time, after, after having some motion of some sort, and see how, how you rate this time. Now, um, I wanted to also say that [00:20:00] you're not, you're never, this is kind of like security, right? Just like in a, in a, in a, in a, in a, in, in software, you never get, To be secure.

Uh, security is an amount of effort. You tried, you put into a software to make it secure your head towards security, but you're never getting there. And the same thing for these bad boss types. Um, once you do the assessment, you're going to do some work and you're going to improve on, um, maybe vulnerability, but then, uh, that doesn't make you a great boss.

Really not yet because you've got other things you need to work on. Do you see what I mean? So, um, once you've, once you've taken the assessment and come back, there's going to be more to work on. You're never going to achieve 100 percent Nirvana, great boss.

Aaron Rackley: Yeah. No, I think, um, I'll definitely check that because I've read the book, obviously.

Thank you for sending me a copy. It's been very, very fun read during the, uh, train journey in the last couple, a couple of days. So appreciate that. Um, there was a bit that [00:21:00] shocked me actually, and I think is a good thing. So was obviously I mentioned earlier, the book is split into two parts, which is part one, you know, the types and then part two, I can't remember the title, but it's, it's The building blocks, right?

It's the building block part. And I thought it was amazing that that section is double the size of the first bit. Now that just instantly makes me think that you guys have spent a lot of time trying to think about how you, how you get out of those pitfalls and how you get out of those traps and problems.

So where do we start?

Ken Corey: Well, I really would say that the best place to start is the assessment tool, even if you have the book in hand, maybe especially if you have the book in hand. Uh huh. Start with the assessment tool. It doesn't take all that long and it'll give you an idea of what building blocks might help you the most.

I would also say there are 14 types of building blocks. There are 10 types of bad boss. [00:22:00] Do not try to deal with all of them at once. It would, you know, you'll never be able to achieve anything before. Uh, you, you run out of energy before you run out of steam. Um, so by all means, uh, take the assessment test, find out what, uh, bad boss type you score the highest in and pick the first building block there.

Focus on that for a month, focus on that for six weeks, whatever, and, and, and see if it makes a difference. And then pick the next one and then pick the next one. Did that make sense?

Aaron Rackley: Yeah. No 100 percent makes sense Um, you mentioned if i'm remembering it, right lisa, please tell me if it's wrong You have in your 14 building blocks.

You have like a foundation Few don't you and then the ones on top of that, right? So I thought maybe we could just talk about some of the foundation ones okay, um, so I think if you want to pick one or two of those That would be a good point to start, I think.

Ken Corey: Sure. Uh, the very first one I, I, I, [00:23:00] that, that I want to mention, of course, is appreciation.

Okay. Now that's not one of the core, uh, actually, now that I'm, now that I'm saying it out loud, I'm thinking, I'm thinking I'm not answering your question right. That's what I'm thinking. Hold on a second. The building blocks are in two parts themselves. Uh, the bottom six, the foundations that you mentioned are respect, trust, authenticity, vulnerability, empathy, and compassion.


Aaron Rackley: So let me quickly interrupt that then. Yeah. Why, why did you put those six at the bottom as the core?

Ken Corey: Um, because, uh, the bottom six are the things that you need to do, you need to provide, uh, to your people, right? Mm-Hmm, , um, trust is something, as an example. Trust is something that you want, uh, to have, you want to trust, be able to trust your employees, but you want them to be able to trust you as well.

Yeah. Um, trust is, is, is one of those ones that you have as a manager, you have to give it first, right? Because of the power imbalance. [00:24:00] Um, they're not going to trust you until you've proven yourself. And the best way to, to, uh, make yourself trustworthy is to trust them first.

Aaron Rackley: Right.

Ken Corey: Uh, it's one of those ones that even when they do make a mistake, you have to, to figure out how to recover, fix the problem.

Then trust them again, you have to do this, right? If you can't trust the people in your team, then maybe it's time to either put them onto another team or, or exit them from the business, right? Um, but the, the reason that those six are there is that they are things that you have to, to be, you have, there are things that you have to do to support your people.

Aaron Rackley: Mm-Hmm. . Yeah. I think, um. I think you mentioned it, you call it the core six pack, which, which made me chuckle.

Ken Corey: My wife was a gymnast back in, back, back in the day. Right. And, um, so for her, she, she, she strongly relates a lot of these lessons to, uh, her gymnast training, uh, or, or to physical [00:25:00] challenges. And, and so when she saw these six, um, uh, attributes kind of pop up, she goes, Oh yeah, that's a six pack.

That's a foundation. Just like you have to have core strength. To be able to do gymnastics, uh, you have to have these six to be able to to be a a great boss

Aaron Rackley: So one of the other core blocks, I think I wanted to touch on Touch on because, um, it's something that we haven't really covered on the podcast before, which is authenticity.

What kind of foundation do you think you need to build in authenticity and how can you grow that?

Ken Corey: Authenticity is number one, uh, being your true self, having the courage to show your true self, not only to, to, to yourself, but also to your people. Okay. Um, that is a, that's a big challenge. One of the biggest challenges.

That I've had during my career was figuring out what I wanted to be when I grew up. Um, uh, the answer is astronaut, by the way, but, um, [00:26:00] for, for, for in a, in a daily basis, for me, the answer is manager. Um, because, uh, as a manager, I'm able to help my people be successful. I'm able to help clear the path. I, I'm able to set them up for success.

So when they fly, um, I can, I can bask in the, in, in the achievement that they've, that they've made there. Right. Um, so, but it took a long time to get to that realization for a long time, I did not want to do that. Uh, I did not realize that was my goal. So for authenticity, the very first thing is you've got to try to figure out what's going to make you happy, what you really want from me, something I've noticed in a lot of my roles recently is, uh, people get the title of, um, IOS engineer, they come into an organization, they're, they're an IOS engineer, then a situation arises where they might need to take a look at some Android code or some backend code or, or web code.

And they, and they say, Oh, I [00:27:00] couldn't do that. I'm an, I'm an IOS engineer. They accept their limits. Right. Um, and that's a real shame because that may or may not be your actual set of limits. Um, myself, I was working in a place where I was an IOS engineer and then Some work needed to be done, uh, uh, on Android code and there wasn't anybody to do it.

Uh, so, uh, the limits went out the window and I learned Android code and I loved it so much that I switched over to Android for my next role.

Aaron Rackley: Okay. Okay.

Ken Corey: Um, so for me, part of my own authenticity was getting rid of those limits, finding out the things that, that, uh, that I love for me, it was, it's being adaptable and learning, um, in that, in that scenario.

So, uh, so I ran after it. I

Aaron Rackley: think the way that the book is structured means we could sit here all day and go into every single one of them, and I don't want to do that because go read the book. So I tried to, I tried to call us out little bits of snippets so that we can, [00:28:00] people can get the flavor of the book, um, and then go and buy it, and I'll put a link in the, uh, show notes because go and buy it.

Um, But I think an interesting point would be why, why, apart from just generally being a nice human being, why would I want to be a better boss?

Ken Corey: Can I, can I give you some statistics? Yeah, I love statistics, go for it. 57 percent of employees who have left a job say they left because of their boss. Almost 60 percent of people leave just because of their boss.

Okay, that's bad. Let's let's move on. 69 percent said that their boss had as much of an impact on their their daily satisfaction as their partner, as their doctor. Now think about it a second. The doctor could tell you you have cancer. A partner could say, I've cheated on you or I'm getting a divorce. Your manager can come in and have the exactly the same level of [00:29:00] devastation on your daily life.

That's crazy. A lot, a lot of managers think that's the way they're supposed to be. They're supposed to be hard, hard bitten and nitpicky and you know, no, no. Obviously you need to give good feedback and you need to support your people to grow in the right direction. But we really don't need to be giving the equivalent of those incredibly bad news messages as a manager.

Um, and then finally, uh, 70 percent uh, of, uh, bosses account for a 70 percent variance in employee engagement. So, you know, a lot of people think HR is responsible for culture. No, they set the stage, they might put up some props, but it's the manager that sets the culture for a team. It's the man, their manager that sets the culture for the department, their manager that sets the culture for the division and so on.

Right. Um, And you have to have an intent to build a good culture because if you do not, you will end up with a culture. Culture is [00:30:00] inevitable. You're going to get one. Yeah. But if you don't do it well, if you don't do it in a supportive way, in a, an open minded way, in a, in a, in a happy way. You're going to get a very bad culture.

Aaron Rackley: Yeah. It's interesting that those facts actually, because I knew, I know personally that I've left companies because of managers. Um, so to hear it's that high is, is not surprising, but surprising at the same time. Are you looking into this self reflection and looking at these pitfalls and traps that you tend to fall into?

I think it will also help you understand how the team's feeling, but also. And then not be surprised if they come to you one day and go, Oh, I'm leaving. Because I think there's a lot of times where managers go, I never thought, I didn't realize they were sad and it's going, well, yeah, like you're an avoider.

Yeah. You never come to talk to us. You didn't ask or, or,

Ken Corey: or the manager didn't make it possible for you to be able to, to, to say something that wasn't [00:31:00] great news. Right. The manager might have set the situation up so that you couldn't, um, tell the manager that you're, you're, you're, you're unhappy. You're deciding to shop around.

Aaron Rackley: Yeah. No, interesting. I've, um, at work, I've just had my yearly review and, uh, one of the, if you're listening and you're one of my people on my team, sorry, I had my review and, um, one of my aspects for improvement is, uh, communication with the team. Sometimes I can be a bit. rough, a bit blunt. Um, so that's something I'm going to be looking into and I will be looking through the rest of this book, um, and rereading it again and then I'll be doing the quiz because there's a lot of stuff in here that I didn't even think about as being a potential problem or a potential negative.

Um, And now I want to solve them and I want to make myself better. [00:32:00] Now,

Ken Corey: I do want to point out that the book is designed so that you can do it bit by bit. You don't have to read it from the front to the end and then do it all over again. Right. You can, you can find the one kind of boss that resonates with you and read that, which is, I don't know, three to six pages.

You can find the top three building blocks, which are three to six pages for each one of those. It's, it's meant to be taken in bits and bites and chunks rather than one, you know, war and peace read.

Aaron Rackley: Yeah, that's just how I absorb information. I've got a shelf of books up there that I read through and then I read through them again.

But also because I have slight ADHD, I forget what they say after a little while. So I have to read them again.

Ken Corey: By the way, I've got a bookshelf because of your bookshelf. So thank you for that. Thank you very much.

Aaron Rackley: I think I'm going to end there for us talking about the book, because I just think people need to go and read it, essentially, and there's a lot of [00:33:00] great information in here.

And I imagine there's even more great information on the website, so I haven't had a chance to look at that. One thing I'd like to ask all my guests that come onto the podcast is to recommend a book. And I'll recommend this one so you don't have to, but, um, it doesn't have to be a tech book, doesn't have to be management related, but it can be your childhood favorite story from when you were four years old.

It doesn't matter, but it will go on the bookshelf for people to buy. So

Ken Corey: what would you recommend? Um, let's see. I wanted to recommend, um, first off, uh, I was absolutely gutted when somebody recommended turn the ship around. Cause, uh, top, top marks on that one. That one is one of the ones that I really, really enjoy.

Um, I also wanted to talk about leadership is language, uh, by David Marquette, but I think that might've been chosen as well already, hasn't it?

Aaron Rackley: Uh, yes, it has. Yeah. Yeah.

Ken Corey: In that case, um, then I want to talk about, uh, Sean Acor, uh, A C H O [00:34:00] R. Um, the happiness advantage.

Aaron Rackley: Okay.

Ken Corey: Um, his, his whole take on, uh, on happiness as a core principle that helps organizations, um, come together, uh, become engaged, uh, deliver at a more productive rate, uh, uh, it, it, it enables communication, um, it, it has an awful lot of benefits.

And, uh, I really think that, uh, Happiness is not one of those warm, fuzzy things. And we don't want to force, we don't want to paste happiness on top of problems. Um, but I think if we could actually find a place of happiness within the organizations, I think it really will help things. Moving forward.

Aaron Rackley: Awesome. Well, that's going on the list. Fantastic. I'll add it to my Amazon basket after the call. I tell you, since starting this, I've spent so much money on books, more than I, more than I used to, which was a lot before that. But, [00:35:00] um, so. Where can everyone find you and the book online?

Ken Corey: Uh, it's it's all the information is on the website badbossesruinlives.

com Um, my wife's email my email address are on there. Uh, you could buy the book from there. You could take the assessment from there Um, we're both on linkedin. Um, Ken Corey and Deborah Corey, uh, you can find us there But really the website's the best place to go. Awesome.

Aaron Rackley: Brilliant. I'll make sure to win the show notes and thank you for coming on

Ken Corey: Aaron, thank you very much for having me.

I really appreciate it. Um, yeah um It's been a real pleasure. And this is one of those topics that I just, I'm so passionate about. It's really, uh, good to, to hear that people resonate with it, with some of the messages. So thank you very much.

Aaron Rackley: Thank you.