Career Lessons from TV

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Posts Tagged ‘trusting your boss

Lesson from “Royal Pains”- In Boss You Trust (or Not)

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While there may be many reasons for you to be at your job, it’s widely proclaimed that the biggest reason why you’ll leave is your boss. As the latest episode of  “Royal Pains” shows us, a critical issue that could come between you and your boss is trust.

When Hank learns that his de facto boss, Boris is keeping secrets from him, he forces Boris to come clean under the threat of walking away. Boris reveals to Hank that he’s keeping a shark in his basement for research, and the marine biologist Hank treated for injuries was studying it. At the end,  Hank realizes too late that the shark is linked to Boris’ health. Boris leaves on an extended road trip before Hank can pry any further. It was a no brainer for him to walk away from a situation where secrets kept from him affected the way he practiced medicine. If your boss keeps secrets that you suspect affect your work, you may consider doing the same thing.

Discover How Dark The Secrets Are

As Anthony Balderrama writes in “When You Don’t Trust Your Boss“, if you suspect your boss is keeping secrets, it’s important to identify the rationale behind your suspicion. Is it just perception and bias, or is there hard evidence? If you determine that your boss IS keeping secrets, figure out if those secrets go against your personal beliefs, or the law.  If the secrets affect your personal beliefs, make a decision on whether or not you can live with it as Hank did. If the secrets are of an illegal nature, or violate company policy, you may have to report it, but be careful because if you don’t know who to trust, it could blow back on you. The best defense, as Balderrama writes, is documenting the interaction between you and your boss.

As For Me…

If there’s one thing I learned in my work experience, it’s that you should always do your best to figure out where everyone’s coming from, especially your boss. Not only does it foster trust but also enables you to serve the company’s interests above and beyond what you’re told to do. At the very least, you’ll know who to be careful of, and if appropriate why you need to leave. If they are keeping secrets, it’s always a good idea to know why. In many cases, bosses have the best intentions, but the worst judgement in acting on them (again not ragging on any of my past bosses). If you value your current job and think it’s worth saving, you might try going to your boss to confirm their intentions, and possibly suggest more desirable and transparent options to best serve their interests. Do your best not to put them on the spot unless you have to.  Of course, it’s up to you if the trust irrevocably broken, but appealing to the better side of people has always helped me avoid stress related health issues. No, it’s not easy out there, and in times like these, people are more likely to look out for themselves than anyone else. However, if you can show someone that you’re not out to get them, secrets and trust won’t be much of an issue.

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Written by Reginald Bautista

July 27, 2009 at 3:21 pm