The Rise of Incompetence in Today’s Workforce

You need no reminding that today’s global workforce and economy is rocked by instability. The sad part is the economic collapse in 2008 and 2009 gave companies a solid justification to reduce their respective employee counts. As those same companies earned record profits in recent years, the employees that were handed a pink slip were never hired back.

What is more troubling in this volatile economy is the rise of incompetent managers who don’t have the skill sets to manage employees and are simply doing the bidding of their unqualified leaders. Here are some hard truths.

1. It’s not about WHAT you know. It’s about WHO you know.

2. You may think you are performing well and will work hard to receive a favorable review at year end, but politics eventually comes into play and if you haven’t done enough brown nosing – despite all your achievements – those efforts will be useless.

3. The rise of incompetent managers is driving talented individuals to quit.

4. You are at the mercy and whim of your manager. This rule can be applied to any career level (i.e., entry, mid, senior).

5. Companies are not investing in their employees. Many people learn on the job and “fake it till they make it.”

6. If you try reporting a problem about workplace bullying, human resources will dance around the issue and ultimately point the finger at you. HR is their to protect the company. Not you.

7. Instead of promoting from within and offering an employee a decent pay increase, a company will seek external candidates who have no understanding of the company culture or inner workings and will shower them with an attractive salary.

8. During the glory days of the global workforce, employees would join a company and work there for the rest for their lives. Upon retirement, a person would walk a away with a golden handshake, a nice fat pension plan or both. It’s rare to find any of those things in the current climate.

9. Don’t ask us where we see ourselves in five years. We don’t even know where we’ll be next month. Our foremost mission is to hang on for dear life and defend ourselves from colleagues trying to sabotage our careers by dragging us down or stabbing us in the back – sometimes with the approval of management.


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