How to Poorly Manage Employees

Do you want a good laugh today? Do you want to feel better about yourself as a manager or supervisor?

Then compare your management style to Edward Mike Davis, who ran Tiger Oil Company in Houston during the 1970s before the company went bankrupt during the oil bust of the 1980s.

“Tiger Mike” wrote some now very famous memos that are the epitome of poor management. However, I never found anything blatantly illegal in his memos. He was an equal opportunity bully, harassing and demeaning all of his employees.

Of course, his kind of supervision gives employees an powerful incentive to find something about which to sue. That incentive is known as vengeance.

Tiger Mike’s memos include such gems as these:

  • “I have the privilege of swearing publicly, in front of anyone, or doing anything I want to because I pay the bills. When you work for me, you don’t have that privilege.”
  • “We do not pay starvation wages, and there are some people left in this world who want to work. I am not fond of hippies, long-hairs, dope fiends or alcoholics. I suggest each and every person in a supervisory category (from driller up to me) eliminate these people.”
  • “Anyone who lets their hair grow below their ears to where I can’t see their ears means they don’t wash. If they don’t wash, they stink, and if they stink, I don’t want the son-of-a-bitch around me.”
  • “Do not speak to me when you see me. If I want to speak to you, I will do so. I want to save my throat. I don’t want to ruin it by saying hello to all of you sons-of-bitches.”

For more of Tiger Mike’s amazing memos to his employees, click here. After reading these, you can congratulate yourself that you are a much better manager of your employees. If not, then you better put an employment lawyer on speed dial!

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