Does Your Staff Consider You a Boss or a Buddy?

By Dennis McCafferty  |  Posted 10-21-2015 Email

Do your tech staffers consider you a boss or a buddy? If they're like the majority of professionals, they consider you more of a manager than a friend, according to a recent survey from Spherion. This is actually a good thing: The vast majority of employees describe their relationship with their primary supervisor as a positive one. They also feel comfortable initiating candid discussions about critical workplace issues with their boss. But they don't seek to hang out with their managers outside of work, and few will connect to their boss through their personal social media networks. Such boundaries help avoid what is perceived as favorable treatment for colleagues who cultivate a personal friendship with the boss. "Top-down friendships really come down to balance," said Sandy Mazur, division president at Spherion. "Given the focus on engagement and retention in the workplace, bosses should help establish a middle ground where employees feel they can approach them to discuss both personal and workplace matters. But there also are clear boundaries so that time spent at work is devoted primarily to professional conversations and tasks." Nearly 940 U.S. workers took part in the research.

Dennis McCafferty is a freelance writer for Baseline Magazine.


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