It’s sometimes rough getting along with a difficult boss, but for the health and welfare of most of us it’s even rougher being out of work. Therefore it’s important to try to adjust to your workplace even if you don’t necessarily get along all that well with your boss. Michigan State University reported on Nov. 21, 2014 your job performance may actually improve if you and your boss can come to grips with a poor relationship which may exist.
Business scholars at Michigan State University have found in a new study that workers are more motivated if they and their supervisors see eye-to-eye about a bad relationship which they may have than if they each have different views dealing with their relationship. Fadel Matta, the lead investigator of the study and a management researcher in MSU’s Broad College of Business, says that seeing eye-to-eye about the employee-supervisor relationship is just as important if not more important than the actual quality of the relationship which exists.
It has been suggested by past research that workers and their bosses often have differing views dealing with the quality of their relationship. Matta and his associate researchers decided to investigate whether that affects actual work engagement, or motivation to work. This affect has been found to be for real. In the study of 280 employees and their bosses it was found by the MSU research team that motivation suffered when an employee believed a good relationship existed with the boss but the boss didn’t see things that way. The same finding was observed when the boss believed the relationship was good but the employee did not.
It has been of particular interest to note that employee motivation was higher with the employee more likely to go above and beyond his or her basic duties on the job when the worker and supervisor saw eye-to-eye about the nature of their relationship, even when the relationship was poor. This study investigated a wide spectrum of employees ranging from cashiers to senior managers in various industries which included automotive, retail and financial services.
Matta feels it’s very important that supervisors and workers don’t misrepresent the feelings they have about their relationship. He says the results of this study show it’s not a good idea to fake feelings in this context. At the end of a hard work day it’s better for everyone to know where they stand and what feelings they share about each other.
This study has been published in the Academy of Management Journal. It has been observed in situations where leaders and subordinates each evaluated their relationship as low quality there was an association with higher work engagement in comparison to situations of disagreement where only one member evaluated their relationship as being of high quality. This effect was found to be consistent regardless of whether leaders or subordinates evaluated the relationship highly. Seeing eye-to-eye about the boss employee relationship was what was seen as important.
We often find psychiatrists advising people money is not the most important thing in the world as they lure and trap people into destructive relationships with them which are highly lucrative only for the psychiatrists. Anyone truly interested in leading a healthy, productive and happy life should therefore never trust psychiatrists and should take this study seriously. Careers and the money which comes with careers are essential for health and happiness for most of us since most of use are not born independently wealthy.
Therefore, keep in mind what’s important is that you and your boss see eye-to-eye about the nature of your relationship and that you work hard to do a good job no matter what the nature of that relationship is. Management and owners should also keep these points in mind in order to nurture productivity in a mutually beneficial way with employees.