Employees distrust their boss?


Boss is one of the most important factors affecting employees. Since their careers depend on bosses, subordinates will do anything to serve, satisfy or get along with their bosses to build a harmonious and effective workplace. However, according to American Psychological Association’s 2014 Work and Well-Being Survey (US) and The Yorkshire Building Society Trust Study (UK) reveal that half of employees do not trust their bosses and think that their company is open and honest with them.

Honesty and transparency are the top reasons of distrust. 48 percent of employees do not have faith in their boss integrity. Employees want to see no politics and hidden agendas in the workplace to make sure that they will get an accurate advancement and nothing obstructs their work stability. Some of them don’t trust in their boss’s potential and skills. Some of them, moreover, distrust their colleagues. Apart from honesty and transparency, what else can be the reasons why employees don’t trust their bosses?

–       Lack courage. Bosses are supposed to stand up for what they believe and want to do. Be confident in their skills and potentials in order to make subordinates feel confident as well. Boss that has no courage will make subordinates doubt about organization’s performance.

–       Self-centered. When it comes to making decisions, bosses should listen to their subordinates’ opinions. Employees are not content if their opinions are denied. When self-centered boss makes a decision, subordinates will doubt about it since they don’t involve in that decision.

–       Low salary? This seems irrelevant but the latest research reveals that the more employees earn, the more they trust. In UK, 57 percent of people with a household income of less than 25,000 pounds don’t trust their work colleagues and almost one in five of those admitted to feeling jealous of work colleagues. Therefore, when subordinates compare their salary to their boss’s and realize that their boss’s salary is overpriced, they will feel distrust about their boss.

–       Bad relationship. The relationship between boss and subordinates is one of the important reasons. Employees feel distrust about the boss who is not down-to-earth and doesn’t try to get along with work community.


Trust is a precious commodity because it takes a lot of time to build it and a little time to lose it. Also, it plays important part in the workplace leading to good performance, level of risk taking, information sharing, group effectiveness and work atmosphere. Distrust may be a result from unsuccessful leadership. From what I have learned in class, if the boss is transformational leader, it will reduce distrust in the workplace. Transformational leaders are tend to guide and motivate their subordinates in the direction of established goals by clarify role and task requirements which means subordinates will be clear about what their boss are doing and the gap between boss and subordinates will be getting closer since the boss has to get along be a part of work community to inspire and motivated them that results in good relationship between boss and subordinates.








Stephen P. Robbins, Timothy A. Judge, 2013, Organizational Behavior, Pearson Educational Limited

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