What are Bad Junior Leaders Made Of?

By | August 28, 2022

[August 28, 2022]  Many books, articles, news stories, and such have written about bad bosses and all of us have spoken to one another about the poor leadership we’ve experienced.  And I’ve written about the topic before (see links here, here, and here).  Oftentimes leaders present a common picture of those traits of bad junior leaders who are simply bad at leadership.

Here is my take on what you might find in a bad junior leader, as distinguished from a more senior leader:

  • Lack of Respect (for those junior while doing the opposite for senior leaders)
  • Rude and Selfish Behavior (which often comes with a feeling of superiority and privilege)
  • Negativity (in many forms but especially when it comes to work interactions with junior employees)
  • Unethical Conduct (there is nothing worse than someone who willingly gives up trust and confidence to personal whims)
  • Laziness (physical and intellectual laziness means employees can expect little from that leader)
  • Quick to Hog the Credit (instead of sharing it, the bad boss believes only he is responsible)
  • Fails to Provide Rewards or Recognition (to those who deserve it)
  • Rarely Available (for leaders it’s about always being there for everyone, in particular for junior personnel)
  • Rejects All Feedback (feedback should be seen as a gift; otherwise you will not receive it)
  • Fails to Delegate (it has been said that a leader cannot delegate responsibility yet authority must be freely given)
  • Uses Discipline Inappropriately (oftentimes, simple positive communication is all that is required)
  • Causes Dissention (among and between groups)
  • Establishes an Environment of In and Out-Groups (inappropriately rejects some employees over others)
  • Impatient (desires immediate results)

You might have predicted, while reading this list, that those bad leaders would quickly learn from their behavior after receiving feedback from their senior bosses.  This is however rarely the case.  Either the junior leader rejects the feedback or uses it against junior employees.  The bad junior leader is also very good at hiding from responsibility; this is a common trait too often found.


Please read my new book, “Our Longest Year in Iraq,” on Amazon (link here).

Author: Douglas R. Satterfield

Hello. I provide one article every day. My writings are influenced by great thinkers such as Friedrich Nietzsche, Karl Jung, Aleksandr Solzhenitsyn, Jean Piaget, Erich Neumann, and Jordan Peterson, whose insight and brilliance have gotten millions worldwide to think about improving ourselves. Thank you for reading my blog.

12 thoughts on “What are Bad Junior Leaders Made Of?

  1. Edward G.

    Bad junior leaders. Plenty of them around. I hope they wake up and realize they could do better.

    1. Lynn Pitts

      If only! I had my share of them working in the garment industry. Too many were just too plain stupid.

      1. Forrest Gump

        Yeah, me too. The idea is that the institution teaches them to be better. But that does not work in a corrupt organization. And, we are seeing entire institutions corrupted today, esp. the FBI.

  2. Mikka Solarno

    Gen. Satterfield, thanks for what you are doing and continued best of luck on your book. I see that people are still purchasing it and enjoying your writing. Got my copy almost 6 months ago and have now read it twice. Amazing what you can pickup from a 2nd reading.

  3. Frontier Man

    Excellent thinking here. But I do believe most of us have figured this out by now. Or is it that the readers of this leadership blog are much more educated about the particulars of leadership than the average person who trolls the internet?

    1. Dead Pool Guy

      Let’s move on from here and just say that we are not better but more informed.

  4. Wendy Holmes

    Hey guys and gals, I just got Gen. Satterfield’s book in the mail and began reading it yesterday. His book, “Our Longest Year in Iraq,” is truly inspirational to me. I never imagined what would happen behind the scenes in a war. After reading a few chapters, I immediately got the impression that our media totally misled us about what was happening. Facts no longer matter to the news media.


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