When Your Friend Becomes the Boss

Making friends at work is a good thing but there is a chance that one of you will get promoted and even have to manage the other. If your friend becomes the boss, the dynamic in your friendship will change. Then what? Here are ways on how to deal.

Get a Handle On Any Feelings of Jealousy You Might Have
If you and your pal were equals before the promotion, you might be feeling a tinge of jealousy over their career boost. Perhaps you even were going for the same position and now your friend not only got the promotion you wanted but they will be your new boss. A double reason to feel envious, which is understandable, and all the more cause for making sure you get a handle on jealousy early.

Just because you feel the negative emotions associated with jealousy doesn’t mean you need to act on them. Don’t lash out at your friend (who will now also be your boss) and instead be supportive. You don’t have to pretend to be ecstatic, which your friend will know is fake, but be kind but genuine in your disappointment.
You could say something like:
“I’m bummed I didn’t get the job, but I know you will make a great boss. I’m happy for you.”
It may take you a while to work through your feelings of jealousy but in the meantime don’t pit other workers against your friend. Be the type of friend you’d want them to be if the situation was reversed.

Step Up Your Game at Work
Don’t slack off now that your friend is the boss. Your friend might not think you’re the best worker when it’s all said and done. Perhaps they listened to your gripes when you two were on equal footing, but now that they’re the boss they need to look at things more objectively and can’t give you preferential treatment.
What’s more, you’ll be looked at more closely for favoritism when your friend becomes the boss, so stop the gossip mongers in the officer cold but simply being a great worker who earns every kudos and raise. Become such a positive employee that there is no question that you are valuable, regardless of the fact that your friend is the boss.

Talk it Through With Your Friend
One mistake friends make during a promotion is to ignore it. They think they can carry on as if nothing ever happened. While that’s admirable it isn’t exactly realistic because feelings never go away just because you don’t talk about them.

Your friendship will change when your friend gets promoted so address it head on to make sure the boundaries in your relationship stay comfortable for both of you and to let your friend know what you’re thinking about the situation. It’s important to let them know you realize things are different now but you want to remain friends.

Keep Your Friendship Sacred and Don’t Spill Details of Their Life
When you are a friend, you hear things. Your friend tells you what they really think about their spouses or career, and you’re expected to keep these confidences to yourself always. Even when your friend becomes the boss.

It might be tempting to talk about certain secrets (especially if you’re irritated at your friend’s new position) but when you hear a secret it should always remain a secret. You owe your friend that.

Rethink Your Office Friendships
If you and your pal were office BFFs, make an effort to get to know the others in the office. Your friend will need to make some new friends at their management level and so will you. This actually helps you and your pal stay friends in the long run. With new people in your social circle you’ll be able to stay friends outside of work much easier.

For instance, if you and your pal used to go to lunch together every day, you have to admit that it probably wouldn’t look good for you to do the same thing now. If you have others in the office you can hang out with, you’ll be able to move through this new season of change quicker than if you resisted things and insisted on trying to keep things the way they were.

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Love Magazine: When Your Friend Becomes the Boss
When Your Friend Becomes the Boss
Love Magazine
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