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Last Updated: Wednesday, 10 May 2006, 00:29 GMT 01:29 UK
Bullying bosses 'rife across UK'
Stressed office worker
Bad management can have a negative impact on productivity
Bad managers and bullying tactics are rife in workplaces across the UK, a report has claimed.

Nine out of 10 workers said they had worked for a bad manager and 25% said management styles had become too harsh.

Half of the 1,500 people questioned by law firm Eversheds said their boss had been a bully.

"Strong and effective leadership should be at the heart of all good businesses, but these findings make troubling reading," Eversheds said.

The survey also uncovered a lack of communication skills among managers - with 97% of employees saying they would like their boss to set out their plans more clearly and directly.

Staff also called for an end to management phrases such as "thinking out of the box" and "singing from the same hymn sheet", which caused particular irritation.

'Lack of respect'

Eversheds chief executive David Gray said the report showed a "distinct lack of respect" for management - with one third of workers holding a negative view of their current boss.

"From the findings, it is clear that managers have got to achieve a fine balance," he added.

"Workers say they respond to managers who are straight-talking and honest, but also someone who is approachable and friendly."

Mr Gray also warned that companies that failed to ensure they have a good manager in place could risk losing money as there was a strong link between the quality of management and productivity.

A survey by the Chartered Management Institute suggests however that managers are also subject to bullying. Nearly half of all middle managers say they have been bullied - by both bosses and staff, while almost a third of directors also admit to having been bullied.

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