As much as managers and team leaders may deny it, they all have a favorite employee. Favoritism in the workplace is something that cannot be avoided. That doesn’t mean it’s necessarily a bad thing, as long as this favoritism doesn’t show in the decisions a leader makes. If you want to find out more about favoritism in the workplace, keep on reading. We’ve collected the opinions of 4 leaders on the topic.
Favoritism in the Workplace: 4 Leaders Weigh in
#Should You Say No?
Most often than not, people focus on those that are left aside, as opposed to the people who are actually on the receiving end of workplace favoritism. These people are often blamed for this and thought to be ungrateful if they complain about it. Should you speak up and say no if you feel like someone is choosing you over the rest of the team members for no apparent reason? Definitely.
Jacquelyn Smith, Director of Content Strategy at Flexjobs and writer at Forbes, believes whenever the relationship between you and your superior starts to feel uncomfortable, you should find a way to refuse the favoritism they’re showing you. For example, you could suggest sharing an important project with another co-worker. This will give that co-worker an opportunity to shine. Moreover, it will give you the chance to politely get out of the situation.
#How Favoritism in the Workplace Can Damage Your Company
Now that we’ve looked at the effects favoritism in the workplace can have on the employees, it’s time to also take a look at the effects it can have on the company. Edward Fleischman, CEO and chairman of Execu|Search Group, explains how when the economic conditions become rough, companies tend to leverage favoritism more in order to keep top employees. Is this a wise decision?
No, according to Fleischman. Doing that can trigger a high turnover rate, which is precisely what you want to avoid. This is particularly relevant for small businesses that don’t have many employees. As a result, they might struggle with this issue more than larger companies.
#Keeping Emotions Aside
When it comes to favoritism in the workplace, career coach Melody Godfred advises people not to allow their emotions to interfere with their job performance. It’s normal to have an emotional reaction when your manager treats you unfairly and plays favorites. However, allowing your emotions to dictate the way you respond to this can cause more harm than good. Instead of reacting in an emotional way, Godfred says, evaluate the entire situation strategically. Then, see what you can improve about yourself.
#Taking the High Road
Ultimately, what is there to do when you come across favoritism in the workplace? According to Muse career coach Heidi Ravis, you should be the bigger person and not show your anger or frustration. Moreover, whatever you do, don’t badmouth your co-workers or your manager. Instead, try talking to them about why you would be a better fit for a project you really want to coordinate.
While you can’t avoid running into favoritism in the workplace, you can learn how to navigate the situation with the help of the 4 expert tips above.