The “Boss Paradox”


All of the managers who have subordinates know this: It’s hard to be a boss.

And how about being a good boss?

Well, that’s almost a Paradox.

Think about it this way:

What does your boss expects from you? Like all the managers he expects you to be the guy that gets things done, a motivated and ambitious employee, a problem solver, a loyal and a reliable person, to have good human relations, etc. etc. etc.

Exactly as you expect from your subordinates.

On the other hand, what do you expect from your boss? Let me guess…
You expect him to acknowledge and respect you as a person who is not only here to dedicate his life to his workplace. To understand that you have a life, a family, big dreams for the future, hobbies and a Yoga practice at 6PM.

Wait a second! Isn’t it exactly what your subordinates expect from you?

See the paradox?

When I first saw it, it blew my mind! As a young manager, I was so busy getting things done for my boss (by constantly throwing tasks to my people), that I’ve never stopped for a moment and thought about their expectations from me!

Although it might sound trivial, I believe that it’s important to be aware of it. The fact that there is an Inverse Proportion between the two expectations is not always in our mind.

So how can we solve it?

There is no simple solution, but I believe that the first step is a mutual understanding of both sides about this paradoxal situation.

After that, whether you’re my boss or I’m yours – let’s talk. I’m sure there’s always a way to find a win-win solution.

Alon Pakash