Archive for July, 2010
Does Your Boss Trust You?
Workplace issues are never out of the public discussion. Here are some recent media highlights: CBS News talks on “How to Handle Toxic Bosses“; BusinessWeek discusses “maltweetment” – people using social networking to get back at their higher-ups and co-workers; Time analyzes a New York state bill that targets workplace bullying ; and AOL DimeCrunch highlights a new job market tendency, the “tempreneur,” that is giving many people a renewed feeling of job security.
In my recent Psychology Today article I talk about another issue that can give you trouble at work: bosses who have an “employee trust deficit.”
Does your boss pop into your office at the most unexpected times to check up on you? Does he ask endless questions, micro-manage your work schedule or demand to know exactly what you’re doing? Do you want to take on more responsibility, but your ideas get shot down?
Some employees prefer having dialog with their bosses over feeling ignored. But there is a fine line between frequent communication and micro-management. Very often, a hovering, meddling boss leaves little incentive for you to produce your best work – because you believe that in the final analysis the end product won’t be yours.
Ironically, many managers feel that they are providing a service to their team members. At times, managers with the best intentions may not realize that they are not being a devoted mentor, but rather an unwitting menace. You are left feeling as if there is little or no trust in your decision-making.
The trust gap between bosses and employees can be mutually self-perpetuating. The same lack of trust in your judgment begets mistrust in your boss. This gap is at the root of significant downtime in your job, which clearly isn’t helpful to you or your company.
Read more about the importance of mutual trust and find suggestions on how to handle the problem here.