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I wonder sometimes if anyone on this board has ever been a manager.

I was for a while in a small company, but it was a manager/engineer position, so I'm not sure if you would count that.

It's amazing when doing reviews how every single person thinks their above average.

I don't know how many people actually believe that, but few people are dumb enough to label themselves "average" in a review. Management is often full of positive-thinking marketing types. Ask them if any of the company's products are average, and you'll get an earful of superlatives - even if they know the product is so-so. In a review, you are the product.

If you were the manager, how many people would be saying the exact same thing about your choice? If of course, you were even allowed to make one. Anything but seniority based firings could lead to a lawsuit.

The last two companies where I have worked have had layoffs. In both cases, it came down to who the boss liked better regardless of talent. Seniority had no bearing on who was canned, and some very talented people I didn't particularly like were let go. It is well known at the latter company that individuals were chosen to be scapegoats for some poor decisions made by some of the managers.

There are decent managers out there, but the majority of my experience with management has been neutral to negative.

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