Poynter’s Jill Geisler wrote that there are three things that supervisors will do that employees will never forgive. I am taking issue with one of these. According to Geisler, employees will never forgive their boss if they act like “one person around the troops and another person entirely in the company of his/her own superiors.” In my opinion, you should always act differently around your superiors. It’s called professionalism.
I believe that there should always be a small wall separating you from your supervisors. For the hierarchy of the workplace to function, there must be a defining line between those holding higher positions than you. I believe that line is drawn through mannerisms. For instance, I may go to happy-hour with my coworkers on Friday, but I would never invite my boss out to drink with me. There are certain unspoken rules about the workplace that need to be respected. It would be the same as if I invited Dr. Silcock to a fraternity party in Tempe. I act one way around my peers and another way around professionals.
Now I am not saying that bosses should be unapproachable. I believe that employees should feel like they can talk to their superiors and freely share ideas. However, I think that they still must respect a hierarchy. With a boss, there are times when your opinion does not matter. There are times when you should shut up and not talk. These rules do not always apply around your peers, with whom you can freely discuss anything.