Being TOO Friendly At Work…

January 5, 2010

Part of my brand is making sure that as a manager you are acting in the best interests of your CEO, owner, direct supervisor, etc. Although I am very interested in employee advocacy, I have learned the hard way that you can’t forget who you work for and, at the end of the day, whose signature is on your paycheck.

I’m not trying to sound cynical, just realistic. I have to protect the interests of my employer, and in doing so, I am protecting myself. I was hired for a reason, and that reason isn’t to make sure that everyone at work is my best friend. I have established relationships with my employees in the past, and at times it has made it difficult for me to be the best manager that I can.

There is a fine line between being friendly with your employees and being too friendly. Make sure that if the time comes, you are able to discipline employees or handle delicate situations without the relationship getting in the way. When it comes time to buckle down, hold a staff meeting, or just reign in some of the behaviors in the office, your “friends” at work can become argumentative, or not take you as seriously as they should. If, as a manager, you think that the friendship will not become an issue, remember that you cannot predict your employee’s reactions to your decisions or disciplinary actions.

This is a lesson that I am still learning. I want to create a friendly, pleasant environment to work in but at the same time I want to be respected and acknowledged as a leader in my office. If anyone has any experiences in this, please, feel free to share…Thank you for stopping by!


2 Responses to “Being TOO Friendly At Work…”

  1. sharonmarkovsky Says:

    I totally agree. While you need to care about your employees and work in their best interests, being their friend can lead to all kinds of problems. I think it boils down to maturity level of the individuals and how friendly is friendly. Great post!


    • Sharon,

      A person’s maturity level is a very good point. I have found that it is those who have not been in the workforce as long that tend to have a harder time dealing with managerial interference when it is not all fun and games.

      Thank you !


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