I’ll work long hours, graveyard shifts, probably cook meals for the team in between shifts too, but will not tolerate working with a boss who has a partner in the same office.
I never imagined I would be writing on a topic like this. Especially because it could be perceived as a sensitive issue, or considered as making the world privy to the hardships I have gone through. Either way, I shall tell you why I feel so.
You’ll always feel naked
Well, figuratively. It’s like dealing with office grapevine that will only branch from your boss to his partner. Your grievances, thoughts, aspirations - basically the emotional baggage that you would otherwise be very comfortable sharing with a superior - will be shared with and mocked by someone else too. Soon, you’ll be a victim of eyes that basically look down upon you, perceive you and make you feel vulnerable at all times. Eventually, you’ll stop sharing things with the boss and your chances of being treated more as a friend and less as a subordinate will grow bleaker.
Tip: Don’t get overfriendly with the boss. Filter out what you want to share. Don’t make him privy to your personal affairs, especially your last hook-up, current girlfriend or someone you’ve set your eyes on.
Your appraisal will depend on what the partner thinks
You can count on this. It’s like sucking up to someone you can’t stand and could kill if given a chance. You’ll have to put up with that fake smile, concern and attitude that you’d buried long before college got over. Yes, that phony stance would surface in your life, and you’ll have to be bloody good at it – if you want a solid appraisal. Or else, you can just sit back with a straight face and relish that meagre appraisal that’ll only entitle you to a Kingfisher Ultra in lieu of a Kingfisher Premium.
Tip: Don’t go that extra mile to be nice to the partner in crime, but offer a genuine smile once you cross one of their paths. Try making some small talk, or giving some valuable information about the new phone the partner has purchased.
You’ll never get genuine advice
On the outside, your boss will always be available for you – emotionally, monetarily and otherwise. Probably, as a boss that is what you’re supposed to do, and be good at. However, when the boss has a partner in office, then you’ll be exposed to two devils at the same time. Both your boss and the partner will make sure they play around in a way that would seem spiralling out of concern, but be more of a deeply thought plot.
Tip: Don’t go to him when you need genuine advice. Go to him for petty things, for example, the pair of jeans you should buy, or discuss the next smartphone you would want to buy. These things wouldn’t cost you much, but will massage the boss’ ego at the same time.
You’ll always be at the receiving end
Well, every relationship has its share of ups and downs. Your boss’ relationship would go through such tough times too. They will be the hardest for you. The moment you walk into your team’s bay, you’ll be able to sense something shifty in your boss’ attitude. Yes, that is the time when you shouldn’t be walking up to him to discuss that brilliant idea you got last night that would help your company save 15 per cent on costs, or seek an holiday approval, or anything else for that matter. Basically, it’s the phase where you wouldn’t actually know how to react. You can see that your boss is feeling miserable after the bitter tiff he’s had, but you can’t do anything about it. Well, it is advisable you don’t address this at all. Why would you want to get your ass on fire if your suggestion/concern backfires?
Tip: Work harder during these times. Try not to get up from the seat too often. Finish all the pending work; check all the mails from your boss. Don’t give him a second chance - once he gets one, he’ll let everything out on you.
You can't ever gossip
Always remember – a boss is someone who has established himself as a smart, perhaps, cunning professional. That is why he/she is your boss and you are working under him/her. However, if your boss happens to have a partner in the office, then let me take the pride in informing you that your boss’ partner would keep a closer eye on you and your movements in the organisation. It would matter more to the partner to safeguard the boss’ integrity, name, and 50 other things that he/she would never think about. So be very cautious and alert about what you say with regard to your boss and in front of whom.
Tip: It’s better not to gossip about your boss within the organisation. Period!
You would end up working more
Come on, why would your boss stick around in office and break his head on tasks when he has a team of workers like you. More so, he’d walk in fashionably late, sit all day surfing videos on YouTube that’ll make him/her laugh and go for longer chai/coffee/cigarette breaks than you would ever do. At the end of the day, he’s the king, and you’ll end up being the slave.
Tip: Don’t have one. Kindly share if you get a way to beat this one.
PS: With due respect, I still love my ex-bosses.