In one way or another, everyone in the professional wrestling industry has thought about what it would be like to work for Vince McMahon. As the owner and CEO of the WWE Universe, Vince is easily the highest profile executive in sports entertainment, such to the extent it could easily be argued wrestlers don’t become Superstars until he signs them to a contract. That said, not everyone is frothing at the mouth for the opportunity, and in fact, some of the best wrestlers in the world today are rejecting the company’s offers so they can continue working elsewhere.
Let’s face it – people don’t generally become certified billionaires due to a generous spirit. McMahon has loudly and proudly committed several acts of ruthless aggression in the business world that would cause any intelligent wrestler to think twice giving him control over their careers for any given stretch of time. Of course, it may all be worth it to experience the fame, glitz, and glamour that comes with being a WWE Superstar. That’s not to mention the fact that Vince’s bizarre eccentricities have also worked to his employees' advantage at time, as his madness may well be the source of their success. Keep reading for 8 reasons we’re glad Vince McMahon isn’t our boss and 7 reasons working for him wouldn’t be all that bad.
15 BAD BOSS: He Doesn’t Believe In Taking Days Off
At 72 years young, Vince McMahon still shows up to practically every Raw, SmackDown, and Pay-Per-View taping, and he’s hard at work devising storylines and otherwise running the WWE Universe throughout the rest of his week. Change a few of the specifics, and this is the exact same way Vince has been running things since the day he purchased his father’s company. Aside from the handful of times he’s been busy with court dates, by all accounts, Vince is a guy who simply doesn’t take days off, and he pretty much expects the same from his wrestlers. Sure, wrestlers get injured sometimes, and thus are physically unable to work, but when it comes to more run of the mill sick days or taking time off for personal reasons, Vince is far less understanding. Only his biggest stars are given free range with these “liberties,” and considering some people will take a day off if they even get the sniffles, this might be enough to stop their dreams of wrestling fame dead in its tracks.
14 GOOD BOSS: He’s Hands On And Passionate About His Company
Not everyone has experienced it given today’s wintry economic climate, when just about everyone has to fight to keep their jobs, but those who have know how irritating it can be to work for a person who simply doesn’t care about their business in the slightest. Not too long ago, a great number of wrestlers learned this fact firsthand when they worked for Ted Turner’s WCW. While an expert businessman in other respects, Turner paid almost no attention to WCW whatsoever, which is part of why that company was constantly off the rails. Luckily, the exact opposite is true in WWE, as one couldn’t find a more hands on business owner than Vince McMahon. To this day, Vince has some control over every single element of his company, and he’s highly interested in making sure it all runs smoothly, as well. There’s something to be said about passion for one’s work, as the feeling can often trickle down from employers to employees, a trend Vince has definitely proven through WWE.
13 BAD BOSS: He Pushes Injured Wrestlers To Work Through The Pain
It’s bad enough that wrestlers rarely get sick days, forced to at least cut promos even when suffering high fevers or common colds. However, just about everyone has kept working while sick for one reason or another, and it’s ultimately not that difficult a task to do. On the other hand, working while seriously injured is an entirely different story. Especially in a physical medium like pro wrestling, a seemingly minor injury like a sprained ankle or torn muscle can be a constant source of excruciating pain. Naturally, that pain increases significantly with the seriousness of the injury, and yet it seems like no malady exists that Vince McMahon won’t at least ask his wrestlers to work through. Granted, when the injury gets so bad it can’t be ignored, he finally acquiesces and gives them time off, but until pain reaches a medically documented level, WWE Superstars have to fight through it if they want to keep the boss happy.
12 GOOD BOSS: He’s A Creative Genius
Depending on what one does for a living, the idea of their boss being a creative type has pros and cons. There’s a reason Michael Scott’s antics on The Office made his employees hate him, yet that a similarly off-kilter creative brilliance is a big part of Vince McMahon’s success. While lesser wrestling promoters run the same old angles that McMahon made popular twenty plus years ago, Vince himself is constantly coming up with new and exciting storylines for his innovative and unique characters to act out. This may not sound like too big a deal for those of us working 9 to 5 office jobs, but in the world of pro wrestling, being unique and memorable is the most important part of the show. While nothing can guarantee a given pro wrestler will be successful, having a creative boss like Vince running the show dramatically increases everyone’s chances of finding and entertaining an audience.
11 BAD BOSS: He Doesn’t Give Employees Health Insurance
Forgive us for repeatedly harping on the health care issue, but in the workplace, the issue of how an employer takes care of his or her staff when they get sick is an extremely important one. Not only does Vince McMahon not believe in sick days and occasionally push injured wrestlers to work too hard, he also doesn’t give the vast majority of his employees any help whatsoever when it comes to paying unexpected medical bills. Granted, Vince and his company do indeed pay for any expenses related to wrestlers getting injured on the job, as is legally required. However, if a wrestler happens to get seriously ill, or maybe pull a muscle while they’re working out, WWE has no legal requirement or desire to actually help them get treatment. This is in part because WWE Superstars are still considered independent contractors and not full-time employees, thus dramatically decreasing the number of benefits Vince needs to provide them with.
10 GOOD BOSS: His Door Is (Usually) Open
No matter what it is a person does for a living, chances are they’ve needed to talk to their boss about something or other at least once. It might be something as simple as asking for time off, or a more serious matter like discussing a raise or general work conditions, but the point is, having a conversation with the person in charge isn’t always easy. Many bosses can feel inapproachable based on their power alone, and luckily for WWE Superstars, Vince McMahon has done whatever he can to ensure his employees realize the person he is on TV isn’t the same as the WWE CEO. In stark contract to his angry, megalomaniacal character, most reports indicate Vince is actually very understanding about his employees, letting them openly and honestly discuss what they think is and isn’t working pretty much whenever they feel like it. Sure, there are probably times Vince is way too busy to deal with a midcarder’s random musings, yet the fact remains enough people in similar situations have claimed he was more than willing to lend an ear at the right time, which is definitely a plus for any boss to have.
9 BAD BOSS: He’s Notoriously Indecisive And Flighty
One thing just about everyone needs from their employees, not to mention just about everyone they work with, is trust. This is especially true in the sports entertainment industry, where wrestlers literally need to trust opponents with their very lives each time they step in the ring. They also need to trust that Vince McMahon will never force them to do something stupid or unnecessary, which is unfortunately a sort of faith most wrestlers simply don’t have. While McMahon is indeed a creative genius who tries to put on the best show possible, he’s also known to change his mind at the last second, scrapping months of planning for a random whim that only he truly understands. This can be torture to the wrestlers he instructs to act on short notice, as they obviously have no time to prepare for or even think about what it is Vince asked them to do before they need to do it, live on TV. By and large, the wrestlers at least trust Vince isn’t going to kill their careers in an instant, but the fact is, there’s really no reason why they should.
8 GOOD BOSS: He’s At The Top Of His Industry
Before we get too far into this entry, we’ll give the natural disclaimer that success in the entertainment world doesn’t always mean quality, and it might not even be possible for it to do so. After all, “quality” is a subjective term when it comes to scripted TV shows like pro wrestling, so it isn’t our intention in this entry to imply Vince is the best wrestling promoter in the world. He is, however, the absolute most successful person the sports entertainment business has ever seen, and this is more or less an irrefutable fact. Because one can hardly completely dominate an industry without possessing some knowledge about how it works, this fact makes it pretty clear Vince knows what he’s doing when it comes to wrestling. The fact is, some people are willing to work for whatever sort of madman is in charge so long as they’re truly in charge of an entire industry, which Vince definitely is in regards to pro wrestling.
7 BAD BOSS: He Treats WWE Like A Cult
In fairness to the WWE Universe, they’re hardly the only company in the world that tries to indoctrinate employees into believing they’d be ruined if they ever got fired. In fact, given the company’s success, it’s almost acceptable that Vince forces his employees to tow the company line at all times compared to, say, a fast food restaurant that tells staff to always wear a smile as a representation of the brand. Even so, whenever an employer demands his or her employees act a certain way even when cameras aren’t rolling and they’re at home during a day off, it could easily be said things feel less like a job and more like a cult. Vince McMahon also heavily fosters the idea that wrestlers can never become famous outside of his sphere of influence, furthering the mentality they need to do whatever WWE tells them at absolutely all times, lest their careers suddenly end without warning.
6 GOOD BOSS: He Never Asks A Wrestler To Do Something He Wouldn’t Do Himself
Pick any given moment of WWE programming, and fans are bound to find a wrestling doing something they would never in a million years agree to do. We aren’t just talking about the death defying stunts they perform in the ring, but also the outrageous antics that happen backstage, from merely embarrassing interviews all the way to humping mannequins in a casket. Yeah, Vince once really made a wrestler do that, and in fact, it was his own future son-in-law, Triple H. Bizarre as that sounds, Vince sold HHH on the idea the same way he sold countless weird angles in the past: by ensuring his wrestlers he’d never ask them to do something he himself wasn’t willing to do. Some might think this is hyperbole, but honestly, we believe him. Vince is just crazy enough to get in a casket with a mannequin, or any of the other insane things he makes wrestlers do, which both humanizes him a bit and makes it easier to accept the craziest ideas he asks of them.
5 BAD BOSS: He’s Single Minded And Doesn’t Like Dissent
No matter how much a person likes his or her boss, chances are they disagree now and again on some small matter or another. Usually, this is no big deal, and they might even be able to speak their mind on the subject without the boss getting too mad about it. Not so in the WWE Universe, where Vince’s word is always final on absolutely every matter, with absolutely no leg room for disagreements or alternative ideas. This might sound like it contrasts with earlier points about how Vince’s door is always open, but that isn’t necessarily the case. Wrestlers are still allowed to talk to Vince and ask for a change when an idea is truly failing, but the idea of rejecting him outright is pretty much unheard of. This even applies to non-wrestling matters, as AJ Lee claims Vince was absolutely shocked when she rejected an offer to appear on Total Divas. Simply put, the man hates it when people say no to him.
4 GOOD BOSS: He Pays For Past Employees' Rehab
While the other items on this list has largely been run-of-the-mill behavior most decent bosses share, this next entry is one area where Vince McMahon truly excels past the average employer and genuinely proves he cares about his employees. No matter how long ago a wrestler left his company and/or retired, if they come to the McMahon family and admit to a drug problem that requires rehab, Vince never hesitates in paying for their treatment in full. In fact, it’s a noted company policy that any former wrestler seeking help will always be covered in this regard. Granted, it could be argued the McMahon’s are only doing this for PR, acknowledging that the wrestling industry has a higher than usual average for this sort of problem. Even so, there’s nothing that legally compels Vince to take care of the situation, making it a true act of generosity that he does so.
3 BAD BOSS: Only Top Talent Get Paid Well
Whether they like to admit it or not, there’s a good chance most people would immediately quit their jobs if they stopped getting paid, and no one would blame them for doing so. After all, that’s the whole point of going to work. No matter how much a person loves what they do for a living, the whole point is that they’re nonetheless doing it for a living, as being alive is a pretty expensive endeavor in and of itself. For this reason, wrestlers need a certain amount of restitution for their work like anyone else, and unfortunately, not everyone in the WWE Universe feels like they’re getting enough. Recently, some wrestlers like Ryback have even been speaking out about the situation, arguing lower-level WWE Superstars aren’t paid anywhere near a decent salary. This may be hard for fans to believe, until they realize Vince expects his employees to pay for almost all of their travel expenses, including hotels and airfare, leaving little room for day-to-day expenses, not to mention leisure money or a retirement fund.
2 GOOD BOSS: His Top Stars Get Paid Extremely Well
Okay, so the lower-level WWE employees don’t make a fortune each time they step into the ring, but isn’t that kinda how it’s supposed to be? Obviously, they deserve to make a decent living that will allow them to pay the bills, and a little bit extra for recreation isn’t unreasonable, either. That said, the wrestlers competing in the main event should probably get paid more than whoever appears in pre-show dark matches, and a Superstar that plays a role in every single episode of Raw deserves better restitution than someone who shows up once a month. Vince McMahon is really just being reasonable in paying top level talent more than jobbers, and looking at some of their contracts, he’s hardly skimping out on them. John Cena and Brock Lesnar both make millions of dollars per year, and others like Roman Reigns, Seth Rollins, and Dean Ambrose all come extremely close to these seven figure salaries. With his monopoly over the industry, Vince could be paying them all peanuts because they have few other options, so these incredible pay rates prove he’s not a total Scrooge financially.
1 BAD BOSS: He’s Vince McMahon, Damn It
Ultimately, whether or not a person would enjoy working for Vince McMahon comes down to the simple question of if they could put up with the most eccentric, insane, certified billionaire in the world today. Literally no other corporate executive on the face of the planet has walked onto a stage viewed by millions of fans, dropped their pants, and forced an employee to kiss his or her ass, but Vince McMahon has, and in fact, he’s done it about six times by now. The Kiss My Ass Club is just the tip of the iceberg with Vince’s absolutely unhinged behavior inside the ring, with countless other examples of his megalomania to choose from when pointing to why it’d be embarrassing to call him your boss. On the other hand, hundreds of wrestlers have decided Vince’s weirdness was more than worth putting up with if it meant becoming a Superstar, and there’s no shortage of people willing to do the same to this day.
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