Promotions are desirable, right? For the most part, yes. But there is one aspect of a promotion that can cause an unwanted problem…the situation where you suddenly become the boss of a coworker who was also a personal friend. Will the friendship survive?
Situational leadership training instructors have seen this situation occur many times and have some advice on how you, as the newly appointed boss, should handle it.
- Continue the skills of friendship…good listening, empathy and trust. These are also the skills of a good boss and manager.
- Be objective. Your commitment to your job is around achieving business results. You are now a leader and are responsible for the team and its goals. Personal friendship should not cloud your judgment when business decisions need to be made.
- Accept that roles have changed. You may end up losing a friend (although a true friend should rejoice in your promotion). In the end, your promotion may be the test of the strength of the relationship. If it fails, you should express your regret and move on.