Power Implications and Off-Duty Conduct
Just Say No
Sometimes your managers can't resist getting social with their subordinates, but power dynamics are always at play. It's not uncommon for a manager to want to build more personal relationships with their employees, but the line should always be drawn somewhere. What my seem like an innocent request to the manager, may come across as undue pressure on the employee.
By definition, the title of manager comes with authority. Sometimes managers forget that "they're the boss" - but employees rarely do. That makes it hard for employees to say "no" to a manager - even in casual situations. This microlesson illustrates the power dynamics that carry over into after-hours work functions and explains that certain requests from managers can lead to a harassment situation.
- Managers want great relationships within their teams, but they can’t forget the authority that comes with their positions.
- If a manager forgets the power dynamic, they risk creating situations that feel awkward and even toxic.
- If intentions or communications get confused – people can feel coerced, harassed or threatened.