An Honest Relationship with the Boss increases motivation
New Research by scientists at Michigan State University have discovered that employees have improved motivation if they and their boss have the same opinion about the state of their relationship.
The study, which was published in the Academy of Management Journal, shows that the correlation is equally true if both the employee and the boss think their relationship is not good.
The research looked at 280 bosses and employees across a number of different industries in the US including financial, automotive and retail sectors, but the findings about employee motivation were consistent across the board. The participants were interviewed separately so that employees and bosses could provide honest answers, and also prevent awareness about each other’s opinions before providing their assessments.
Those employees who thought they had a poor relationship with their boss, while the boss thought the relationship was good, had lower motivation. The opposite where the employee felt they had a good relationship while the boss didn’t, also showed low motivation.
It seems that employee motivation is much higher when both the boss and the employee see eye to eye about the nature of their relationship even if that relationship isn’t good. In fact the study goes further and explains the employee is more likely to go above and beyond their assigned job duties with marked performance improvement if the relationship between supervisor and subordinate is honest. Lead author of the study and head researcher at MSU’s Broad College of Business Fadel Matta said:
“Seeing eye-to-eye about the employee-supervisor relationship is equally, if not more important than the actual quality of the relationship. Some people would say it’s better to fake it, but our results indicate that the opposite is true. At the end of the day, it’s better for everyone to know where they stand and how they feel about each other.”