The Female Dark Manager

Some may find this sexist, but Dark Management knows not gender and the explanations provided can be used for either sexes; however, the Serengeti of Management is vast and once in a many moons arise female Dark Managers that stand out like a beacon in the savanna.

Bred by years of mongrel bitchiness the female dark manager exudes acrid egomaniacal obsession with control. Power is used to its absolute and no one may stand in the dark queen’s way.

Melodramatic...; absolutely, because melodrama is her middle name. The following are the prerequisite to being a female dark manager.

Use emotions and voice control to the fullest
There’s nothing like a loud voice to quell all manner of dissension. Shout and scream if you must. Remember to be wide eyed and flail about for emphasis.

Never allow anyone to cut you off or finish your sentences
Strike them down where they stand.

Cut everyone off, especially if their explanations get windy and wordy
You know, the type that asks a second question before you could finish with the answer...

Focus, focus focus – On 'your' train of thought.
Never allow the person to verve away from your topic of questioning, bring them back, raise your voice if you must but bring them back. Make them see what you see.

Accuse, Abuse & Refuse
Upon assessing the facts shrewdly, jump immediately into acrid accusations. Abuse their emotions, put them off their track and rightfully refuse any appeals and justifications. You are always right!

Logic is your best friend
Train very well on this, as it takes a sharp mind use this technique.
A perfect example of a female dark manager character trait -> Judge Judy :-

Pretty... Useless

I posted an entry earlier about how dark managers could just hire any pretty face as long as they can talk to manage customers.

We'll here's proof that a pretty face can only get you so far...

Wankers, Whiners & Trollers

The thing about management which I still find it hard to stomach is the overarching worship of the Peter Principle, to ad lib; people tend to get promoted to their next level of incompetence.

Naturally, being in Management, in particular IT management means that the person will be inundated with brainless bureaucracy and the act of covering ass, tai chi and such that he will be so far behind technology, incompetence becomes second nature to them. To compensate for this testicle lobbing experience the Dark Manager goes through a transformation.

The metamorphosis from a competent task executor, into a wanker.

Wankers are folks that live in the past, reminiscing glory days and how much tougher things were back then. I trust that most if not all of you have met managers that somehow swoop in a technical discussion and supply experiences (most of it unwanted) on how disaster recovery meant dislodging the 35 pound hard drive from the mainframe and hauling it to the DR site. Or how they use to write in assembly yada, yada yada…

The self gratifying act or rather “expansive” notion of falsely inflating their egos, not achieving anything, while feeling good about it is similar to wanking, hence the given name.

The act of “wanking” also kicks in whenever the Dark Manager receives suggestions which he/she perceives as territorial encroachment. E.g a Software Manager telling a Infrastructure
Manager that the applications need more RAM, leading to the Infrastructure Manager wanking furiously.

Whiners are managers that complain about what they “do not have” in order for them to get the job done right. But the moment someone else does it, they transmogrify into a wanker; along the lines of how he would have done it better.

Whiners don’t climb high up the leadership ladder as upper management eschews bad news; which indirectly makes them responsible to follow up on the status of the events. ( Remember selective amnesia) Dark Managers would rather not know that there is a problem, and prefers to a have a group sigh of:-

“WTF! Why did this happen, no one told me about this?”

Another characteristic of whiners are their lack of impetus to resign even after all the whining. Their tasks revolve along funneling responsibilities upwards while pushing tasks downwards.

These are overgrown wankers, the worst of the lot, typically appearing in general public to put down another manager for their achievements. If the project is successful, you troll about how many people resigned in the process. If it meets the dateline, you troll on the lack of quality assurance and adherence to standards. You get the general idea.

Whiner Wanker Complex
To summarize, you wank when someone else is shoveling the manure and you whine when assigned the shovel - Short of performing Tai Chi, and alas; Trolling.

Presentation & Powerpoint

Presentation skills are one of the most important capabilities for a Dark Manager. You have Guy Kawasaki spewing the 10/20/30 rule. Clearly specifying that a presentation slide should typically be not more than 10 slides long, last no more than 20 minutes and have fonts no smaller than 30.

Then again, through horrendously bad presentation meetings, you have this. The clip below summarizes presentation hells that I go through on a daily basis.

Or as Ram Charan says it, if you have to put your points across via Powerpoint there’s something fundamentally wrong with your communication skills. Quite obvious considering the amount of lies a Dark Manager hides and having the viewer look at the slides avoids them from figuring you out through Neuro-linguistic Training your eye movements and body posture.

I’ve also personally attended training on presentation which teaches synchronicity in hand movements and speech, and the rule of not making analogous movements or in layman’s terms, moving your hands and arms the same way every time you come to a point.
And then you have this, a classic example of overdoing hand movements.

Anyhow, practice enough and you’ll be able to lie through your teeth without flinching.

Surviving Nepocronyism

At the risk of creating an obscene neologism, the term Nepocronyism will be used throughout the article. Essentially, the practice of both Nepotism and Cronyism within the organization; I mean, it won’t be the first time that Uncle Bob’s nephew brings in one of his frat bros into the company and it won’t be the last time that the nephew squanders half the asset and still be chairman when Uncle Bob kicks the bucket.

It’s also quite the curiosity to note that Nepocronyism sounds a wee bit like Necropolis, the world of the dead in Greek mythology. Which directly translates to the career of most people in the organization, unless of course; you’re “in the family”.

My pet peeves with organizations that are blatantly Nepocronyistic is how they produce vision statements that are misleading, e.g.

“We are an organization of giants where every personnel will be given equal opportunity for success”.


“We stand by an egalitarian and democratic process of advancement”.

For some strange reasons, the Dark Managers in these organizations just can’t bear the bad press of calling the company XYZ & Sons or XYZ and Co. I mean, the biggest organizations in the world are Nepotistic by nature, and for extremely valid reasons -> it’s a family run business. Look at IBM (the first bunch of decades), Bankcroft Family's Dow Jones, Rupert Murdoch's News Corp, Sam Walton and Walmart etc.

As a Dark Manager, you have all the reasons to practice Cronyism. At the end of the day, it’s about who you can really trust in the company. With all the bad karma that you’ve been gathering, you’ll need the frat brother that shared a whore with you during sophomore. Heck, you still have pictures in case he runs out of line.

So here are a few hints on how to survive Nepocronism, in the event that the cards don’t play to your favour.

  • Drop names when you’re talking to a head honcho, like, “I was classmates with Barrack Obama in Indonesia”. Barack sounds like “berak” which means “to take a dump” in Indonesian, so make up a number of anecdotes about how you use to stand up for Obama when he was still a scrawny big eared kid and that you guys still keep in touch.

    Dropping names do wonders as it elevates your social status without having to prove anything.

  • Be chummy with them (Yes, you’ll have to go through an initiation of sorts)
    Be very careful with this advice, as it potentially means turning yourself into their servant dog and running errands. Being a blue blood all these years has helped them identify willing gophers. So be careful not to seem too obsequious. Secondly, you’ll have to shell out quite a fair bit of money to join in their leisure activities.

  • Marry into them
    Pick the ugliest cousin and suck in your dignity. I need not go into details.

  • Quit
    At the end of the day, if it’s really too hard and your manhood or womanhood just can’t stomach it, find yourself another company.
Better yet, start one with your friends, funded by your dad or a rich uncle’s money.

Managing Up while Shitting Down (Pun intended)

There’s a management afterthought known as the 80/20 rule. Some call it the Pareto Principle, I call it making excuses for not doing 80% of the work, by kissing up to the 20% of the customer group that are known as Platinum Customers.

What are Platinum Customers?
Within the scheme of managing and to an abominably lesser extent, leading an organization; platinum customers are the dark manager’s pot of gold – the key stakeholders. I’ve seen murder being excused when the dark manager is able to address the needs of the higher ups while ignoring the peons.

There was this project where the structure stood like the tomb of Ramses, a darn pyramid. The implementation involved 20,000 people, while the VIPs aka Platinum customers consists of only 200 odd individuals that happen to use old frigid female employees to manage their time. Something tells me it’s the psychological substitute of their wives, except they get to order them around.

Managing Upwards?
In summary, scramble when you’re summoned, always send your best looking staff to see the customers (see Image) and if the peons are getting a cheese burger value meal, platinum customers receive a super sized three quarter pounder with three helpings of cheese, extra fries and an extra large cup of Coke. Oh, and ice cream is on the house.

I have managers that swear by hiring at least 1 or 2 skimpily dressed ladies (which are quite pleasing to look at I might add). While the men that function within this purpose needs to be clean cut as well. There’s one trend that I noticed though, they rarely hire men who are taller than they are. Signs of a bruised ego perhaps…? Fundamentally, signs of a dark manager…

Secondly, hire someone with a British or Australian accent, Afrikaan works as well but they end up sounding like an Indian, so stick to the more esoterically pleasing ones. Men simply cools down when sizeable boobies and dainty eyes flutter at them. Scratch the English, no one pays attention anyway.

Finally, there’s nothing like a gift basket at the end of the implementation to thank them for all the time that they’ve spent allowing you to serve them; short of saying…
“I’m not worthy…”

Shitting Downwards
Shitting downwards is the antithesis of managing upwards; you treat your resources like the minions that they are. Even if a Platinum customer calls at 10:00pm, someone better be ready to pucker up for you to gain the resulting brownie points.

What happens to the peons, the everyday Joe customer?
  • Never promise anything to them in writing.
  • All promises are verbal
  • If they caught a lie, send in the Ken and Barbies
  • Maintain scarcity, i.e. ignore their emails, ignore their phone calls, but when they see you, always get ready with a punch line or two that cracks them up, but excuse yourself the moment things get serious. This works practically every time. The customer will look flustered, but he’s typically calmer as he just had a good laugh.

The take away, the Dark Manager has no shame, and borders between a comedian, orator, public relations officer, and would not think twice to get down on his knees to please…