If you were having a personal crisis - how likely are you to tell your boss?

2019-08-01

NEARLY ONE IN THREE KEEP A PERSONAL CRISIS TO THEMSELVES RATHER THAN TALK TO THEIR BOSS
Sample: c250 UK-based Senior Professionals, August 2019

A sample of senior professionals based in the UK, representing a variety of industries, prefer to keep their personal problems to themselves according to our latest Pulse looking at the role of truth in our workplace in 2019.

One leader said, they were unlikely to strike up a conversation with their boss about a personal problem citing, “Unless it noticeably impacted on my delivery, I would keep it private.”  Another senior manager suggested their boss would not be interested claiming “He simply wouldn't care…”.

That said, over half (52%) said they would be ‘Quite likely’ to speak up with one Director observing, “I’ve found it’s easier to negotiate the flexibility you need in a personal crisis if you are honest with your boss about what is going on,” and another stating, “If you are not open and honest about what is going on in your life, allowances can't be made for workload and commitments. We're a team, and everyone has challenges at different times. It's important we can work together to ensure clients get what they pay us for, however we need to juggle things internally to achieve that. What we don't know, we can't manage.”

The role of trust emerged as a key theme with one senior professional who offered, “Because my work self and my personal self are the same person...I need to feel I work in an environment where I can trust and be trusted.”

Ultimately it comes down to the character of the boss you have.  A view put forward by another leader made this point, “It would depend entirely on who the boss was at the time. I've had bosses who were very sympathetic and understanding in difficult situations (such as terminal illness of a near relative).... and some who were not.”
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