Poll Finds Rocky Worker-Boss Relations

October 13, 2010 (PLANSPONSOR.com) – Forty-five percent of those in a recent poll say their relationship with their boss has been affected by the recession.

A news release from the survey sponsor, Spherion Staffing Services, said of those who say their relationship with their boss has been affected, 74% reported that the recession has weakened their relationship with their boss. Thirty-four percent say they are somewhat or very dissatisfied with their relationship with their boss.

According to the news release, 38% of workers indicated their boss is somewhat or very uncaring when it comes to their career development, with 27% saying that their boss’s attitude about their career development has changed since the recession.  Forty-five percent say their boss has taken credit for their work, and another 37% say their boss has “thrown them under the bus” to save himself/herself.

According to the study, one out of four workers feels their boss is somewhat or very dishonest about their job security, and more than half (53%) feel their boss doesn’t respect them as a professional equal.

Open Communications  

The study found 46% of workers say they don't think they can freely and openly discuss unethical workplace issues with their boss, and 44% say they can't confide about sensitive or confidential workplace issues.

"At a time when workers arguably need added support and guidance to offset the uncertainties that come with a shaky economy, many bosses simply aren't stepping up to the plate," says Loretta Penn, President, Spherion Staffing Services, in the news release.  "Managers need to create an environment that fosters open and direct communication, offers unwavering support for workers, and demonstrates commitment to career development. Unfortunately, many of today's bosses simply aren't delivering on this responsibility."  

According to the study, 44% of employees feel they could do a better job than their boss, and 61% believe they possess better management qualities than their boss.

The survey was conducted online within the United States by Monster Worldwide between September 29 and October 7, 2010, among a U.S. sample of 231 working adults, age 20 years and older. Respondents represent those invited to participate in the survey, which includes full and part-time workers.