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Tips from Famous Fictional and Non-Fictional Bosses

Tips from Famous Fictional and Non-Fictional Bosses

By Eric McLean


Looking for some ways to keep your employees engaged at the workplace all year round? Fear not, we have the perfect piece to get them focused at work, even during the dog days of summer.

So sit back, and let these famous (some fictional, some not) bosses impart some knowledge that is sure to help you and your employees stay engaged at work.


Michael Scott (The Office)

Title held: Regional Manager of the Scranton branch of paper distribution company Dunder Mifflin Inc.

DON’T TAKE THINGS TOO SERIOUSLY. Now maybe don’t approach things the same way as the always affable, and rarely serious, Michael Scott from NBC's The Office, portrayed by Steve Carell. As foolish and misguided as Michael can be – his heart is usually in the right place.

You don't always have to prove to others that you're right, so lighten up. Knowing there is a more comical side to you and that you are willing to poke fun at yourself, invites your employees to become more open with you. You can’t be the big, bad boss all the time.

Going back to a previous Monster post on what makes a great boss, it’s important to stay loose and take a personal interest in the lives of your employees. This will show your employees their boss is caring and interested in who they are as a person – and in turn, this will hopefully make your employees more committed to their work.


Mark Zuckerberg

Current title: Chairman and CEO of Facebook

BE ADAPTABLE. Facebook has been so successful because of Zuckerberg’s flexibility and willingness to adapt based on consumer demands and financial opportunities. The company has never really changed beyond its core ideal of connecting people with one another. While it grew and shifted and modified to fit requests, the social networking service never quit being a social networking service. Because of this, Facebook stands as a perfect example of exercising a great deal of adaptability without ever having betrayed its initial intentions.

Adapting your leadership style to meet the needs of a changing business environment, the needs of different people, and a variety of opportunities is bound to be more effective than staying in your comfort zone. One way you can do this is to be an early adopter of a new idea. Rather than resisting change, be the first to embrace it. Find a helpful new technology, system, tools, or process that is relevant to you and your organization. Learn it inside and out and then introduce it to others. Employees will respect your ability to be nimble and adapt – it’s this type of forward thinking that will make them be proud to work for you.


Elon Musk

Current title: CEO and product architect of Tesla Motors

BE INNOVATIVE. From making electric cars the standard with Tesla to making space travel affordable with SpaceX, Musk is the Thomas Edison of our time. We are not saying you have to be as innovative as Elon Musk, but you certainly shouldn’t be afraid to think outside of the box when it comes to increasing employee engagement at your workplace.

Innovation is driven by exposure to new ideas, people and work. One of the keys to being an innovative leader is to encourage yourself and your employees to constantly learn. Encourage your employees to take courses to build up their knowledge on specific topic, or to help them finely tune their skillsets.

Listen to your employees, changing things up every now and again because of suggestions from your team shows you care about keeping your workplace full of ideas.


Jon Snow (Game of Thrones)

Current title (spoiler alert!): The King in the North

BE BOLD. Don’t be afraid to make the tough decisions.  In HBO’s popular series, Jon Snow has risen to the ranks of the King in the North, and his boldness in the face of adversity is the biggest reason why.

Be the leader that you want to be, don’t be afraid to make decisions just because you think it might make someone upset. If it makes sense for the collective, go for it. This extraverted form of leadership certainly has its advantages, as you are able to provide a clear sense of direction for your employees.  Employees who feel like they have a sense of direction or purpose are certainly more likely to be engaged while they are at work. 

For more tips on how you can increase employee engagement at your workplace, visit hiring.monster.ca.