Human Resources



Businesswoman success, hr

Do you think you’re better than your boss?

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The relationship between an employee and their boss can be a difficult one. Among other things it requires balancing leadership and friendship, subordination and initiative. It should be built on mutual respect, with both parties believing in the other’s capabilities.

Unfortunately for some bosses, they’re in trouble when it comes to the latter. In an ongoing survey of over 5,000 US respondents by career site Comparably, 34% of women and 37% of men said they think they can do their boss’ job better.

While the younger generation has a reputation for thinking they know it all, according to this particular survey it’s the older employees bosses may have to watch out for. Of employees aged 66 and over, 50% answered “Yes” when asked if they could do a better job than their boss. On the other hand, only 31% of employees aged 18-25 thought so.

Per the survey results, education and experience level don’t have the effect you might expect on people’s confidence in their own abilities. 49% of employees with a high school education level think they’re more capable than their boss, while only 32% of those with a Bachelor degree thought so.

At just over a third, a similar amount of employees at entry level as those who have been at their company for over 10 years thought they would do better than their boss.

An additional survey question answered by over 10,000 respondents reveals the areas in which managers could improve to limit the chances their staff think they’re better than them. When asked “What does your direct manager most need to improve?” 50% of respondents said “communication”. Accountability (20%), positivity (14%), honesty (9%) and work ethic (8%) complete the top five.

For those managers among us who think they have nothing to worry about since they’ve never received any negative feedback, we’ve got some bad news. Out of over 5,000 respondents, only 56% of women and 64% of men said they feel comfortable giving their boss negative feedback.

ALSO READ: Managers spend 15% of their time resolving conflict

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