Do you think that Colleagues can be good friends?  And what if you are an HR of the company? Most of the employees will be nice on your face and would make you believe that they are your best pals for the obvious reasons.  HR has all the information about the company whether small or big.

HR knows salary structures, increments, warning letters issued to other employees, and also what’s going on in the mind of management. Befriending an HR will make you invincible. Right? No, not at all. Being an HR myself I know how an HR maintains her personal and professional behavior inside and outside her office.  I have a few good friends who were my colleagues as well but that doesn’t mean I share confidential information with them. And they are my friends because they also understand my boundaries and never push me to honk any information which is supposed to be secretive in nature.

Well this article is not about HR and Employee relations but it focuses on finding out the answer to the question, can colleagues be good friends? For me, the answer is yes.

In one of my organization, employers were as strict and umm (or whatever you want to call them), and their constant dilly-dallying of salary increment and other important employees related issues were the biggest reason for dissatisfaction among employees. But still, Employee turnover was not very high. What’s the Reason? A Strong bond between employees.   Their employees were informal with each other and often use to discuss their official problems with each other. That really helped the employees to evaporate their distress and anger by poking some fun of the bosses. When colleagues become good friends and this gives them the reason to stay back. Employees want a good office atmosphere rather than going after the combination of lucrative salary and office politics.

In another case, one of my friend’s office environment is exactly the opposite. Employees can’t communicate with each other openly. They can talk to each other only over monitored intercoms which hardly leaves any space for healthy communication. Thus most of the employees just know each other by name and have no bonding with each other. This makes the office atmosphere way too serious and un-playful. The employer does not understand the importance of communication and thus providing an unhealthy office atmosphere.

Well, I am not backing up for spoiling the office atmosphere with vague and shadowy chit chat sessions. But think this way that an employee spends a minimum of eight to ten hours in the office and he gets very little time for socializing outside the office. Thus talking about your work-related frustrations & problems and getting advice from someone who understands your office culture and problems is far better than crying foul with family members and taking out your thwarting on them.

But on the other hand, you should also be very alert and matured enough to segregate your friends among colleagues. Not every colleague can be a friend with whom you can think of sharing how you feel about your bosses, clients, and fellow workers. Remember one wrong decision of confronting your mistakes and darkest secrets to someone less trustworthy enough can make fun of you in front of the rest of the employees and it can also be the reason enough to get you kicked out of the office. Don’t be a pawn of office politics and choose your friends cum colleagues very wisely.

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