Some people just refuse to listen until they get burnt. And if they have the authority, they often end up making decisions despite the better judgment of others that end up costing time and money.

For example, in this Reddit story, a man shares how his boss insisted that he come to work and do a presentation physically instead of virtually, even though this employee warned him that the commute due to unusual circumstances would almost certainly be bad. Scroll down and read all about his malicious compliance with this ridiculous request!

More info: Reddit

The ability to communicate is one of the most important criteria for any kind of leader, and nowadays, many of them lack it

Image credits: Lara Jameson (not the actual photo)

The boss insisted that the man do a presentation in person, and refused to listen to his warning about the commuting problems he was facing

Image credits: Maria Orlova (not the actual photo)

When the day of the presentation came, the traffic situation was even worse than predicted, as protesters had completely blocked off the road


Image credits: bobber18

The man got stuck in traffic and the boss agreed to him presenting virtually, to which the man replied that he should do it himself if he wants

The OP begins by saying that while his office is in San Francisco, he himself lives in the East Bay area, so the two cities are separated by the Bay Bridge and commuting on a usual day already takes around 2 hours. However, on the week of this story, San Francisco was the host city of the Asia-Pacific Economic Cooperation (APEC) Leaders’ meeting, and the traffic situation was anything but typical.

When the man’s boss insisted that he come into the office for the presentation, the conversation got pretty heated. It ended with the OP agreeing to comply but warning his boss that he would get stuck in traffic and wouldn’t be taking any blame for it.

The inevitable happened, and the situation was even worse than predicted. The protesters had chained themselves over all 5 lanes and the bridge was completely unpassable. 

When the boss realized his mistake, he started asking the man to do the presentation virtually instead. The employee replied that the boss could do it himself, as he was stuck in traffic and couldn’t do a presentation while driving.


Most people in the comments were very supportive, sharing similar experiences and agreeing that the OP’s boss is not very forward-thinking. Some were suggesting alternatives to how the man could’ve made it to the office on time.

Still, he had a counterargument to all of these propositions, saying that most of the hotels were already booked for the APEC meeting, and his company refused to pay for the other ones. He also appeared to heavily disfavor the Bay Area Rapid Transit (BART) system due to the craziness that tends to happen inside there and argued that the protesters could’ve just as easily shut it down.

The author also gave a short update in one of the comment replies, saying that the presentation ended up being postponed as both the boss and the clients weren’t able to appear on time either.

Image credits: Diva Plavalaguna (not the actual photo)

To get a few additional comments from the author, Bored Panda reached out to u/bobber18, who explained that, unfortunately, he couldn’t share any more direct details at the moment as they might be too revealing. All he could tell us was that there hadn’t been any more significant updates since the presentation had been postponed.

The author said that, as of yet, there hadn’t been any fallout either, but the heated discussion with his boss and some hurt feelings that came as a result of it were the main reasons that urged him to share this story with the Malicious Compliance community. “I love my job, but I’ve considered moving along. We will see how things work out in the new year.”


On the other hand, the OP later updated us that he had received an apology note from his boss, which might indicate an optimistic turn of events after all. He was also quite positively shocked by the community’s response. “I felt vindicated, to say the least!” shared the man in regards to almost all of the comments being positive and supportive.


Image credits: Dan Gold (not the actual photo)

Managers who don’t listen to their employees is quite a usual problem. It doesn’t matter if the topic is about new ideas, work environment, or, for example, presentation planning with traffic in mind. So, to learn more about how to deal with it, we did some research.

HuffPost tells us that, according to a survey by the Society for Human Resource Management, 84% of working people in the USA admitted that one of their biggest stressors is poorly trained people managers, adding that the most common issue found was managers’ lack of communication skills.

The article explains that many employees wait too long for things to change on their own or to find the courage to start the conversation themselves, so when they finally do get to that moment, they tend to explode. While in these frustrating situations, quitting might seem the fastest solution, there may be better ways to deal with it.


According to the article, it’s wise to begin by talking to other employees who deal with the same supervisors and look for insights into understanding your boss and what works when communicating with them. This can give you a better idea of whether this is a problem that you can solve.

The next step is to take this up with the person in question having a fleshed-out solution in mind. The article recommends being specific, acknowledging your feelings about how you were being unheard, and proposing a clear solution to fixing it. This way, the boss will know exactly where the problem is and won’t be left guessing about how to improve that.

However, some people are simply impossible to deal with. If that turns out to be the case, perhaps it’s time to consider a change. This doesn’t necessarily have to mean leaving your company or even your role, as you could try switching teams on the inside to get a different manager. But if even this doesn’t work out, it may be time to look for a new, better place.

We spend a lot of our lives working, and our mental health and time are a lot more valuable than money, so it’s only natural to expect a pleasant work environment and good relations with the people we deal with every day. Unfortunately, it’s not always the case.

Sometimes, like in this story, people can be very sure of something they’re very wrong about. It’s very human to make these mistakes, and everything is fine as long as they see the bigger picture, admit that they were wrong, and try to change. But if doesn’t seem to get better, the wisest choice might be to walk away.


How did you like this story? Do you have any similar experiences you’d like to share with us? Come to the comments below and let your thoughts flow!

People in the comments were very supportive, making jokes and agreeing that the poster’s boss is quite shortsighted