Bosses in any organization are supposed to be role models for their employees! They need to be fair, flexible and equitable in their dealings with employees. A healthy relationship between supervisors and sub-ordinates promotes pride for employees, enjoyable work place, high efficiency and harmonious growth. But in real life of most organizations, all what are highly desirable mostly remain only a pipe dream or decay on paper.
When bosses taste power, they do develop whims and fancies, likes and dislikes, which actually drive polarization of their opinions. There is a set of employees, whom they tend to favor and the rest invites their frustration or fury. Out of employees they favor, there would always some who are “yes men” or they generally don’t dissent, support their boss rather blindly and chemistry of their behavior and body language fit well with that of boss. These are the employees, who emerge as blue eyed boys or girls of the boss.
There are bosses, who are clever and keep their likes for blue eyed ones clandestine. They are likely to be far more vociferous in telling people about their impartial approach; but very subtly show favors to blue eyed ones. In the current age, such bosses are in big majority compared to those who are crude and clamor openly for whom they side with. Ironically, ethics policy of most organizations pronounces non-discrimination. However, such discriminatory and dishonest behavior of bosses goes on and on with impunity!
Unfortunately, bosses having equitable and empathetic flair for all are in minority worldwide!
Why bosses are seldom free from biases!
Look at the practical side of life – nearly all of us have biases. Bosses would have all the more, since they are far more vulnerable for following reasons:
- Power of human mind is such that if it is not harnessed in a right way, it would harbor biases!
Bosses rarely have time or urge to think of channelizing their mind power Harness, productively.
- If a boss is aggressive, he (no gender bias) is bound to relish power and command authority.
Such a boss is bound to be egotist. Employees, who can boost his ego, are bound to become his pat. But those, who hurt his ego, are bound to come under come under trouble.
- If a boss is submissive, he would be tempted to collect those employees around him, who normally take his side. He would use them to save his skin!
- A boss is expected to create hierarchy in his organization. Statistically, I have observed that bosses tend to fill key positions in this hierarchy by giving only 40% weightage on average to merits and 60% to his own comfort level with employees concerned!
Once selections are made for key positions, the boss go hammer and tong to defend his deputies. I have rarely seen bold bosses, who would openly admit mistakes in their selection and initiate a change!
- Many bosses like to treat some employees as their confidants, who could keep an eye on activities of other employees, especially the dissenting ones.
Are you surprised at above revelation? It is bad but true in corporate world!
- Focus of nearly all is on performance figures and not people values. This cannot but help promote prejudices and lack of pragmatism!
Why being blue eyed is a bad idea
If you envy those, who become blue eyed for bosses, you need to start rethinking.
Here below are banes of being blue eyed:
- You would be under shadow of your boss and hence, run the risk of losing your own identity!
- You would have poor knowledge of where exactly you stand by merit, since true picture is exaggerated by biases of boss in your favor!
Blue eyed ones often face serious difficulties, if they have to work for a new boss!!
- You would get opportunities and rewards on a platter, more than what you deserve or able to chew. This would not be a blessing, as probabilities are higher that you cannot cope up with same.
- You would be poor in conflict management and facing challenges, which are keys to success in corporate life.
- Your peers would feel alienated and may keep a distance from you!
- You can’t blossom, when you become a boss!!!
So, there is a dire need for every institution and organization to (a) mentor, coach or develop bosses to have unstinted flair for being fair and impartial to all and (b) encourage employees to stand on merit and shun favors from bosses!