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My favorite boss (so far) was one I had many years ago, when I was first getting my feet wet in the field. She demonstrated many qualities you write about: selfless, devoted to her subordinates, generously shared credit, rarely angered, and promoted innovation.

Three years ago my family moved from another state, back to where we started. Not surprisingly, I requested (and obtained) a position working at the same organization. Under the same boss I had 10 years ago. She now regularly tells me she would gladly work for me.


My favorite boss was from one of my first jobs, as a summer temp at JD Power. I was shy and, as an art major, convinced I had nothing to offer in a business setting. My boss correctly interpreted my tendency toward sarcasm as intelligence overrun by insecurity, and made it clear he valued the insights I had on the job.

At the end of my time as a temp, he took me out to lunch and wished me well when I went back to college. My experience there made the prospect of working for a living seem much less terrifying.

Bob Sutton


thanks for providing such a great example. Indeed, more evidence that one of the best tests of a leader is what he or she does when people make a mistake.


My experience is from law enforcement where I had a great boss which I respect a great deal. I have many examples of his great leadership, but in one particular example that really impressed me was when I was found to have violated policy. I was clearly at fault and was to be officially reprimanded. He was able to sense that I felt terrible about the incident and rather than lecturing me on my error, simply explained his position and reaffirmed his confidence in me. I left his office with more respect for him and the organization. I will always remember the way I was treated that day.


My favorite "good boss" is Laura K. I started my marketing career quite green at a PR firm. I didn't know anything. I could write well, but I didn't know how to write for business. She patiently and consistently taught me everything in a very informal mentor kind of way. I'll always be grateful to her for that.

David Cohen

Bob - I've found "Good Boss, Bad Boss" to be quite applicable to thinking about schools and school districts. I've been fortunate in my career to deal with good bosses, but can see plenty of uesful tips for all. Will be blogging about it more soon!

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