There are many ways to burn bridges with coworkers. But one CEO's shenanigans stand out in my mind.
A few jobs and some years ago, I worked as the IT director at a company where I reported to the CEO, who had hired me a few years prior and thought of IT as a very important component for the business. I enjoyed a very good working relationship with him. He valued input from his managers and treated us with respect. However, he moved on one day and the board began looking for a replacement.
[ For stories about mistakes IT pros have made, read "True tech confessions II: Sinners and winners." | Follow InfoWorld's Off the Record on Twitter for tech's war stories, career takes, and off-the-wall news. | Subscribe to the Off the Record newsletter for your weekly dose of workplace shenanigans. ]
I wasn't involved in the hiring process of this new CEO, but I had a chat with "Al" when he came by the office once, I was encouraged that he seemed to have the same view about IT as the outgoing CEO. He also seemed willing to work with us department managers.
However, when he officially started the job a month later, it was a different story. I expected him to schedule a meeting with me to talk about IT. But weeks passed, and it never happened. I even asked him a couple of times informally if he wanted to talk to me, but he said he was busy. Checking with other department managers, they too were getting the brush-off from Al.
I guess he was busy -- in the interim, Al had hired three new directors and two new managers for positions that really weren't necessary and in a time when neither the economy nor our company were doing so well.
The other strange thing was that Al was rarely in the office. Much of the time, even his newly hired executive assistant didn't know where he was -- just that he was out doing something somewhere.
At this point, my opinion of Al was very negative. Other managers felt the same way; we tried over and over to connect and work with him but were constantly rebuffed. Instead, he worked with his new hires during the short stints he was actually in the office.