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May the workforce be with you – staff dread working for Darth Vader

No one wants to hear him say “I am your line manager”  (Gareth Cattermole/Getty Images f)
No one wants to hear him say “I am your line manager” (Gareth Cattermole/Getty Images f)

Darth Vader has topped a poll of fictional characters who would make the worst bosses in the real world, carried out via social media.

The wheezing dictator –  famed for his no-nonsense approach to managing star destroyers in the Star Wars saga – edged out Professor Farnsworth, Futurama’s bespectacled mad scientist,  to claim the title. Richard Webber, the alcoholic senior surgeon from Grey’s Anatomy, came third.

EasyOffices, the flexible working specialist, carried out the survey. It looked at the number of searches for famous fictional leaders and bosses, ranking them “according to their number of positive and negative reactions on social media.”

Having a good boss is an important part of employee retention, with “soft skills” the key to success according to further research quoted by EasyOffices and carried out via the corporate networking site LinkedIn. Soft skills are generally agreed to cover the ability to engage with, listen to and support staff. They outscored both “verbal communication skills” and “teamwork”.

With bad management one of the main reasons people quit their jobs, almost 90% of staff covered in the survey felt “a lack of collaboration and communication” is the leading cause of workplace failures. In the UK, over half of those surveyed said they were “planning to leave their job soon” due to problem bosses.

The EasyOffice poll contained further grim reading for the Dark Side’s least favourite manager. His arch rival Obi Wan Kanobi was one of the polls more positive potential bosses, alongside Vader’s own estranged daughter,  Princess Leia, an accomplished military leader in her own right.

Charistmatic elderly magician Albus Dumbledore -- who has senior executive experience running the Hogwarts School of Witchcraft and Wizardry in the Harry Potter books -- was the most favoured Brit in the poll.