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Can You be Friend with Your Boss? Pros and Cons


Having a close friend in workplace is a good thing to help you stay motivated at work. But what if the person you befriend is your boss? What are the pros and cons of becoming a friend with your employer? Let’s find out.

An employer plays an important role in how employees improve professionally as they can act as a role model in the workplace. According to David Stewart at BizFluent, various studies found that managers and supervisors have a great influence on employee satisfaction. They should be able to provide opportunities for employees to develop and expand their expertise. A boss is also responsible for appraisal reviewer and delegation. Thus, without a manager, the company will not run well.

So, what does it have to do with office friendship?

Let’s see the definition of a friendship first. Collins Dictionary defines friendship as a relationship between two or more friends - very simple. Meanwhile, Wikipedia defines friendship as a relationship of mutual affection between people that is a stronger form of interpersonal bond than an association. It means having a friend is good as you will understand each other better. However, this kind of relationship can affect professional development as well.

See also: How Your Personal Finance Affects Your Future Job & the Solution

That being said, being a friend with your boss can result in negative and positive development. What are they? Here are some advantages and disadvantages of being your boss’s best friend.


·         You get a new friend – Congratulations, you have got yourself a new friend. Having a friend, especially a reliable friend will likely boost your happiness. You have someone to share all the stress and someone who will understand you better because he knows how hard it is to work in that company.

·         You will likely meet more professional people – Being a friend with a professional, especially high-positioned person is nice because you will likely be invited in their professional gathering. You can meet high-class people and leverage your networking to the next level.

·         You will understand tasks better – Because your boss is your friend, you can ask everything more personally, including the task assigned. There will likely less miscommunication about it so you can and should perform better than the rest of the employees.

·         You will hear more than your colleague does – Manager practically knows more than everyone in the company. He knows the secret you might not know about the business. Thus, being his best friend means you will hear more than you think, especially about organisation and its people.

·         You can develop yourself better – If you make use of the friendship better into your professional level, you can be a better employee. Yet, it should come with you and your boss act as professionals in workplace. Both of you should never mingle between personal and professional things.


·         It will be hard for you to get constructive criticism – Criticism is crucially needed in a professional level as it helps you develop as a professional person. However, if your boss is your best friend, it might be less inclined to get negative feedback when you didn’t work to your full potential. Unless you want to risk your friendship, criticism and negative comment are always hard to give, especially to a friend.

·         You will be your boss favourite – A manager will be the person to recognise and praise their employees to boost productivity and motivation. An employee of the month trophy or reward is probably given as well. In this case, there is a risk of favouritism toward friendship. Think of you as a friend, you might get that promotion or a raise where other employees think you might not deserve it. So, your coworkers might start making an accusation of favouritism.

·         Your peers might not like you – In line with the previous point, your coworkers might dislike you since your boss always calls you for important matters. Jealousy might arise from such cases. So, you might get along well with your boss but you will have a hard time to fit in the circle of regular staffs.

·         You can be less productive – Because you know that your friend, who is a manager, will forgive you for that late report, you are likely to delay what can be done early. And if it happens continuously, your productivity will decrease drastically.

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