Home > management, uml > Unconscious, Conscious, Bozo, Helper

Unconscious, Conscious, Bozo, Helper

The following sparsely “bentUML class diagram (see the end of this post for a quick and dorky tutorial for interpreting the diagram) exposes Bulldozer00’s internal hierarchy of manager types. Yours may be different, especially if you’re a manager.

The Base Class

The hierarchy’s Manager base class supplies all the mundane operations that sub-classed managers inherit and perform. For example, all managers in this particular inheritance tree make project plans, track project progress, and monitor progress against the plans. The frequency at which these behaviors are performed, along with the exact details of how they’re executed, is both manager-specific and project-specific. For example, during performance of the “takeStatus” operation, one manager may require project members to write out detailed weekly status reports whilst another may just require informal verbal status.

The Sub-Classes

The second level in Bulldozer00’s morbid and disturbing manager class hierarchy is more interesting. There are two polar opposite sub-types; Bozo and Helper. In addition to inheriting the boring, mechanical, and necessary responsibilities of the Manager base class, these subclasses provide radically different sets of behaviors. For instance, the Bozo subclass provides an “ignoreDICs” behavior whilst the Helper subclass provides “listenToPeople” and “solicitIdeas” behaviors. Comparing the behavior sets between the two subclasses and then against your own manager(s), how would you classify your manager(s)?

As the diagram shows, there are two Bozo Manager subtypes: Conscious and Unconscious. There’s no equivalent subdivision for the Helper Manager type because all Helper Manager “instantiations” are fully conscious. Hell, since all the behaviors that Helper Managers exhibit are so extraordinarily rare, productive, and against-the-grain, there is no way they can be unconscious and not know what they’re doing.

In Bulldozer00’s experience, most Bozo Managers are of the Unconscious ilk. They continuously execute the counterproductive behaviors forwarded on to them via their Bozo inheritance, but they don’t realize how detrimental their actions and words are to the orgs they’re responsible for growing and developing. Since virtually all their fellow clique members behave the same way, they’re oblivious to alternatives and they can’t connect poor org performance to their own dysfunctional behaviors.

Forgive them, for they know not what they do. – Jesus

Lastly, we come to the Conscious Bozo Manager class. Beware of these dudes, of which there are few (thank god), because they are hell on wheels. These guys/gals know fully well that their behaviors/actions are both locally and globally destructive. But why, you ask, would they behave this way? Well, because they’re out to inflate their heads and wallets and there are no boundaries they wouldn’t cross to achieve their goals.


If you choose to embrace, internalize, and use Bulldozer00’s class hierarchy to evaluate and “privately” judge your managers, you might want to take these suggestions into consideration:

  • Run like hell from the Conscious Bozo types.
  • Do your best to bring consciousness to the legions of well meaning, but sleepwalking, Unconscious Bozo types
  • Attach yourself like a lamprey to the Helper type

But why the hell would you want to “buy into” Bulldozer00’s manager taxonomy? Great freakin’ question!

Appendix: Mini Class Diagram Graphic Tutorial

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  1. August 14, 2010 at 1:09 am
  2. August 15, 2011 at 4:27 am

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