You Need to Ask: If I Had Me For a Boss, Would I Like Coming to Work?


“If I had me for a boss, would I like coming to work?

Face it, the people who work for you have other options. (If they don’t, you not only have the wrong people on your bus, you’ve got a lousy bus.)

Offering a competitive wage and benefit package may be enough to attract talent to your team, but it’s not going to keep them from moving on to another suitor that’s offering the same or better. And if your people don’t like coming to work, another suitor doesn’t even have to match what you’re offering.

They will like you as long as …

As basic as it may sound, any chance that your employees will be engaged to give their very best for any length of time will come down to the relationship they have with you, their leader.

Don’t fall for the trendy misconception that in order for your people to like coming to work you have to provide a ping-pong table in the break room and a petting zoo for their children out in your parking lot.

The reality is they will like coming to work if they like you.

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And it will be impossible for them to dislike you if they believe:

  • That you are fair in your dealings with them.
  • That you notice and reward them when they go above and beyond.
  • That they can come to you when they are having a problem at work, and even problems outside of work; and most importantly,
  • That you have their best interests at heart, and care more about them than the results they can achieve for you.

You gotta have their back

You don’t have to be their buddy. But for them to be engaged and like coming to work, they do need to like you, respect you, trust you, and feel you have their back.

So take a moment to pause and ask yourself, “If I had me for a boss, would I like coming to work?”

This was originally published on Eric Chester’s blog Chester on Point

Eric Chester is a leading voice in the global dialogue on employee engagement, and building a world-class workplace culture. He's an in-the-trenches researcher on the topic of the millennial mindset, and the dynamics of attracting, managing, motivating and retaining top talent. Chester is a Hall-of-Fame keynote speaker and the author of 4 leadership books including his newly released Amazon #1 Bestseller On Fire at Work: How Great Companies Ignite Passion in their People without Burning Them Out.  Learn more at and follow him at @eric_chester


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