Yesterday’s New York Times featured an opinion piece on rudeness and incivility in the workplace and the high cost of mean bosses. It’s true, mean bosses suck. I’ve only had a couple, and most of my bosses during my low wage service years were pleasant overall or mostly absent, which is nice too. When I was a higher ed adjunct, my “boss” was the department chair. Technically they are not “the boss”, they are the people who have the responsibility to schedule classes and push some additional, administrative paper. And this is the problem with department chairs: they usually lack management training and leadership experience, academia is a loner gig. But this often means that department chairs run things based on personality; if they are an asshole, it’s going to be a rough few years.
I don’t work in academia anymore. But, I am job hunting and wondering what kind of boss I will have next. So, give “No Time to Be Nice” a read and wish me luck.
Julie Garza-Withers, former award-winning community college Sociology instructor who’s currently using Sociology to organize and research for racial justice in rural northern California. She was a facilitator in the film “If These Halls Could Talk” with Director Lee Mun Wah, and has published at Working Class Studies, and elsewhere.
Julie has a particular interest in class and classism as a form of social stratification, and the role of cussing and anti-intellectualism in stratifying society. A fan of cussing herself, she says she only “Cusses when necessary,” which is often. She considers herself a working class academic because she is a first generation college grad who grew up in rural southern California where her options post-high school included getting married or working at Del Taco and selling tacos to fast food customers until she got married.
Julie has an M.A. from California State University, Chico, where she studied how social class and gender impact work-place conflict between women. She lives in rural northern California with her husband Larry where they enjoy the forest, their dogs, and gardening.
You can follow Julie on twitter where she posts as WorkingClassTeacher, and also check out Julie’s anti-racism work at Rural SURJ of NorCal-Showing Up for Racial Justice. Currently an inactive author, awaiting a poke with a sharp stick.