Unless otherwise stated in an employment contract, managers can pretty much ask their employees to do anything that's legal. But that doesn't mean that they necessarily should. Cultivating a culture of mutual trust and respect is key to running smooth operations at the office, which is why emotionally intelligent managers know better than to ask certain favors of their employees just because they can.
Managers who have respect for their employees and treat them as equals would never ask these seven things of them.
Lying has no place in the office... ever. And a manager should never ask an employee to cover their back by keeping up with a made-up excuse or maintaining an embellished truth when speaking to other authorities, colleagues, or clients. Whether it's about the date received on a document, the day a check was sent out in the mail, managers should never encourage their employees to be anything but honest.
If a manager asks their employee to complete a task in a specific manner or by a certain timeline, and that method or timing doesn't bode well with authorities, a good manager would let their boss know that it was their idea, not the idea of the employee. A manager who respects their employee would never ask them to take the blame to keep them in the clear.
The reality is that toxic company cultures breed toxic relationships. And when a manager does not practice mutual respect for their employees, their behavior serves as an example for others in the workplace. Then they'll expect employees to put up with bullies of colleagues and clients because that reflected behavior doesn't phase them. An emotionally intelligent manager, however, treats everyone at the office as equals and encourages others to do the same. They reward positive behaviors and take care of workplace bullies so that their employees don't have to.
A true leader lifts others up with them, and part of the role of a manager is to advocate for and support their employees. Therefore, a good manager with a high level of emotional intelligence would never take credit for their employees' work. Instead, they would be proud to show off their employees' successes.
Sometimes, people fall sick. And, when they do, they need a break so that they don't continue to burn out. A manager well-fit for the role will understand that, when an employee is feeling under the weather, they need some time off to recuperate. They would never ask their employee to work while sick unless there are extreme circumstances.
Good managers are good communicators — they verbalize their expectations, concerns, and successes. They don't expect their employees to take their word without explanation because they have enough respect for their employees to keep them in the loop.
It's easy to burn out when working around the clock, and successful managers know this. They realize that their success is contingent upon their team's success, so they make sure to value their employees' time and support a healthy work-life balance to keep them from burning out. Of course, some businesses require odd hours but, if that's part of the job, it's to be expected and not sprung upon employees. A good, respectful manager would never ask their employees to work around the clock without breaks or a plan in place to ensure their health and safety.
AnnaMarie Houlis is a multimedia journalist and an adventure aficionado with a keen cultural curiosity and an affinity for solo travel. She's an editor by day and a travel blogger at HerReport.org by night.
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