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One in ten people have imagined killing their boss

Hannah Whitfield

Nearly a third of retail workers hate their jobs – the highest percentage in the study. As the UK workforce returns to the office on a post-Christmas comedown, Expert Market, a leading B2B online comparison site, has released new research revealing what we really think of our bosses. Contributor Hannah Whitfield, Head of  Research – Expert Market.

The report sheds some light on why so many of us start off the new year desperately on the hunt for a new job – and the results are alarming to say the least. The study, which was facilitated by independent survey company, Vivatic, quizzed 2,200 people about their relationship with their managers to determine the industries with the best and worst bosses.

Murder on the Construction Office Floor
Shockingly, the report found that one in 10 people have gone so far as to imagine murdering their boss. Construction workers emerged as having, the worst relationship with their line managers with nearly a quarter, admitting to murderous thoughts (22 percent), followed closely by those working, in the media industry (15 percent).

Overall, the report found that more than half of respondents (52 percent) said that they hate their job specifically because of their boss. In fact, one in five workers said that they would actually turn down a pay rise in favour of firing their manager and it’s because people think their boss is not fit for purpose.

The majority of those asked (73 percent) believe that they could do their boss’ job far better than them, particularly those in the energy and entertainment industries; 86 percent and 81 percent, respectively. Retail workers were the most negative about their jobs with nearly a third saying they hate their jobs. They were closely followed by more than a quarter (27 percent) of construction workers and 25 percent of those working in the public sector.

Workin’ 9 to….?
All in all, more than a third of people admitted that they dread going to work every day and nearly 60 percent said they felt pressure to catch up on tasks during non-work hours. A fifth of people even admitted to working four to six hours extra every week for free, with one in ten working seven to nine hours extra with no additional pay, suggesting that employees are being overworked and underpaid for their efforts.

Disappointing interpersonal relationships with bosses were further highlighted when respondents were quizzed on day-to-day interactions with their seniors. Nearly a quarter of respondents (23 percent) said they would ignore their boss in the street, nearly double (41 percent) say they avoid their boss at work events and nearly half (45 percent) say they would classify their boss as a control freak.

Other key factors for job dissatisfaction highlighted by the survey include: 44 percent of people say their bosses set them impossible tasks; Half of respondents said they had taken the blame for their boss’ mistakes; 44 percent of people felt a lack of recognition from their boss; 45 percent of respondents said they had been ignored by their boss; 48 percent said that their boss has claimed credit for their work

Hannah Whitfield, who headed up this research for Expert Market comments: “The average cost of hiring a new employee in the UK has been calculated at a whopping £25,181, and rises each year. Employees are said to leave bosses, not companies – so our survey paints a rather bleak picture for certain industries. If ‘horrible bosses’ don’t up their game, they could end up costing their companies thousands in hiring costs.

Investment in employee engagement is a prudent way to combat tension in the workplace. In our business, we’ve proven that encouraging strong working relationships and promoting a healthy work life balance makes our teams more productive, so businesses should take note!”


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