Dear Evil HR Lady,
The company I work for, like many high-tech IT companies, has a guy who is very skilled and inventive but who behaves like a madman. He insults embarrasses, and abuses fellow staff — to the extent that some of them get depressed and cry. He is never on time with anything, causing confusion, and he is tyrannical. Anyone who tried to work for him quits. Whatever prototype or half-finished product he has created may be novel, but they are typically unstable, causing dissatisfaction among our early-user clients and driving them to change suppliers. The products take 2-3 times longer than normal to get into the marketplace. He listens to no one, especially not sales and marketing personnel.
The executive management seems to think he is indispensable (like themselves), and our nightmare goes on year after year. I’ve seen IT staff at other companies who are twice who are highly inventive, develop products that work right the first time, and make money for the company. They may be on the nerdy and shy side, but at least they are nice. I think it is wrong and unethical to allow the above.
[My personal view is that] if the abusive IT person is retained, he should be carefully locked up in a lab and supervised by specially trained guards. In fact, they have put him in an an office that is far out of the way, but they forgot to chain him.
What is your view? What can be done?
To read the answer click here: What if the office ‘genius’ is really a nightmare?