Home > Management Relations > When Your Boss has a Favourite and it's Not You

When Your Boss has a Favourite and it's Not You

By: Maggie Lonsdale BA (hons) - Updated: 23 Oct 2016 | comments*Discuss
 
Boss Favouite Colleague Jealous Bother

Favourites in the workplace can be really annoying – if you are the favourite, it can make you unpopular with your colleagues and if you are not the favourite, you feel left out and as though your hard work is not recognised.

While it would be better if bosses did not have favourites, they do, so it is a good idea for us to look at how to handle the situation when you are not the favourite.

Are you Resentful?

Firstly, are you resentful of the fact that some else is getting the attention? Have you actually thought about whether they deserve it? It may be that your colleague that is the favourite works far harder than you and achieves more for the company. That is not to say that it is acceptable to have favourites, but it can be hard not to if you have a particularly high achiever in your team.

Are They Two Faced?

Secondly, do you feel as though they push other people aside to get ahead? The favourite may be very friendly and helpful to the boss but not so nice to their colleagues. This type of person will do anything to get ahead and your boss may have been blinded by their charms. This is likely to be temporary, as they will either get bored and move on to bigger and better things or their guard will drop.

A Personal Relationship?

Thirdly, is there a personal situation involved? Perhaps the boss and his favourite are having an affair or they may be old friends. Either way, a personal relationship can affect how others see them – it is not professional on either side.

You may feel as though you would like some advice in this situation – if you speak to another colleague or HR, be prepared for the outcome – they are likely to know about whatever relationship there is, but you may look like a busybody or someone who cannot concentrate on their own work.

Why does it Bother You?

Next, is it actually affecting you? If you are bored and unchallenged at work, or simply not putting much effort in, it is easy to get bothered by other people. Essentially, the boss having a favourite is nothing to do with you.

It is important that you work out why the situation is bothering you and then you will be able to do something about it, even if that is just to decide to stop letting it bother you. This may be a sign that you ought to start looking for another job, or that you have not been performing in your own job to the best of your abilities.

Don’t forget that there are good bosses and bad bosses, too. A boss that has a favourite may not be the type of person you want to work for. If they are unable to separate their personal and professional relationships, it is possible that your achievements may go unrecognised or that there are mistakes being made higher up in the company.

Sometimes we have these wake up calls that tell us we can make a choice – continue to feel the way we do and do nothing about it, except keep complaining, or decide to make a change and be the masters of our own destiny.

You might also like...
Share Your Story, Join the Discussion or Seek Advice..
[Add a Comment]
hassaant - Your Question:
I have been at my job for 2.5 years and 6 months ago a promotion opportunity came up for a specialist position, something I have been waiting for my entire career and this was the break that I needed. My company decided to advertise this as a 6 month secondment with the view to make it permanent. I applied and got the job, which was wonderful. However upon being made the offer the manager told me they have also offered this job to someone else and that I will have to share this role with another secondee. The job was advertised as one job all of a sudden became two jobs for 2 people. and guess who I got to share my job with? the managers favourite. This managers favourite came second after me in the in the application process but the management in my department have always made it easy for him to get promoted in the past and have offered him promotions despite not coming first in any of the application processes in the past. The past 6 months have been excellent for me but at the same time quite stressful as this "favourite" keeps attempting to undermine my work and efforts and always tries to suck up to the bosses. They promised me (verbally) that my role will become permanent and the "favourite" will terminate after 6 months. These promises have now changed gradually over time and my manager told me the other day that they will re-advertise this job again to the entire department (this time for it to be finally permanent) and the likely candidates for the interview will be myself and the "favourite". This is after they trained him up and put him at the same level as me. From my point of view it looks to me like they want to hand this job to him and I am just a thorn in their backside of this plan. Yes I am considering leaving this company, but my dilemma is the past 6 months has not been enough to give me the full experience required to continue in my specialisation elsewhere and any other job would just be a step backwards with less pay. I would like to add that I suspect discrimination too as I am not a white male, unlike the "favourite". Also many other colleagues have noticed this favouritism towards this guy as well as the discrimination, but everyone seems too afraid to stand up and say something out of fear they will be looked down upon or punished somehow. I apologise if I have written a lot here but there is a lot of politics and intrigue in my workplace. Any thoughts or feedback would be greatly appreciated.

Our Response:
Until you know the outcome of the job roles there's not a lot you can do. If you feel that you are "ousted" from your job because of discrimination, you should seek advice about how to complain from ACAS.
WorkRelationships - 24-Oct-16 @ 1:56 PM
I have been at my job for 2.5 years and 6 months ago a promotion opportunity came up for a specialist position, something I have been waiting for my entire career and this was the break that I needed. My company decided to advertise this as a 6 month secondment with the view to make it permanent. I applied and got the job, which was wonderful. However upon being made the offer the manager told me they have also offered this job to someone else and that I will have to share this role with another secondee. The job was advertised as one job all of a sudden became two jobs for 2 people. and guess who I got to share my job with?... the managers favourite. This managers favourite came second after me in the in the application process but the management in my department have always made it easy for him to get promoted in the past and have offered him promotions despite not coming first in any of the application processes in the past. The past 6 months have been excellent for me but at the same time quite stressful as this "favourite" keeps attempting to undermine my work and efforts and always tries to suck up to the bosses. They promised me (verbally) that my role will become permanent and the "favourite" will terminate after 6 months. These promises have now changed gradually over time and my manager told me the other day that they will re-advertise this job again to the entire department (this time for it to be finally permanent) and the likely candidates for the interview will be myself and the "favourite". This is after they trained him up and put him at the same level as me. From my point of view it looks to me like they want to hand this job to him and I am just a thorn in their backside of this plan. Yes I am considering leaving this company, but my dilemma is the past 6 months has not been enough to give me the full experience required to continue in my specialisation elsewhere and any other job would just be a step backwards with less pay. I would like to add that I suspect discrimination too as I am not a white male, unlike the "favourite". Also many other colleagues have noticed this favouritism towards this guy as well as the discrimination, but everyone seems too afraid to stand up and say something out of fear they will be looked down upon or punished somehow. I apologise if I have written a lot here but there is a lot of politics and intrigue in my workplace. Any thoughts or feedback would be greatly appreciated.
hassaant - 23-Oct-16 @ 5:07 AM
Suzysuz - Your Question:
Everyone in my workplace is expected to be multi skilled.except for one person who only ever works on one dept. Is this unfair treatment on the other employees?

Our Response:
Probably not, there may be a valid reason for this.
WorkRelationships - 2-Aug-16 @ 12:42 PM
Everyone in my workplace is expected to be multi skilled...except for one person who only ever works on one dept. Is this unfair treatment on the other employees?
Suzysuz - 2-Aug-16 @ 1:26 AM
I have worked for 9 years doing a job I love. I don't take sick, I've come in during my own holiday time to cover and I always get my work completed with no complaints. I asked to work from home one day and was told no as my daughter would be there. I work by email and my daughter is 12 so would not be a disruption. I've worked from home previously with no complaints (on two occasions) and this is a rare occurrence. The reason given was that the company (a large global) does not recommend working st home with children present as they are a distraction. Yet our company has homeworkers who have children and my contract doesn't say this. My contract states I work in my office or other places with discretion. So surely this should be at my managers discretion and not a straight no as I can't be discriminated for having a child. I am very upset that they are saying no with no good reason as my work level and commitment regardless of where I am sat is very high.
Ernest - 31-May-16 @ 8:14 AM
Squiddgy - Your Question:
I have been at my job for 3 years, in this time I have always had at least 1 in 4 weekends off,l. However now I am expected to work without weekends off!!. Im a single mother who values my weekends with my young son. Also my boss tends to give people help often if we are busy, although I never have had help. ever! Im a good worker who up untill now has been happy in my job, and I work very hard, infact so much so this apparenty is the reason I dont get helped. although I am human and I do get tired sometimes, especially on a busy day!! When I have tried to speak to my manager, she brushes me off and tells me to stop moaning. Please can anyone help with some advice on what to do next?!!?

Our Response:
What does your contract say? If you are working longer hours than stated in your contract, you can take the relevant steps for breach of contract:
1. Speak to your employer
2. Raise a grievance following your company's complaints procedure
3. If matters cannot be resolved "in house" with your employe you can take it to an Employment Tribunal.
If you feel you have been discriminated against for a "protected characteristic" (i.e age, disability, gender reassignment, marriage and civil partnership, pregnancy and maternity, race, religion or belief, sex and sexual orientation) then you should also pursue this via the grievance procedure.
WorkRelationships - 30-Sep-15 @ 11:50 AM
I have been at my job for 3 years, in this time I have always had at least 1 in 4 weekends off,l.. However now i am expected to work without weekends off!!. Im a single mother who values my weekends with my young son. Also my boss tends to give people help often if we are busy, although I never have had help... ever! Im a good worker who up untill now has been happy in my job, and I work very hard, infact so much so this apparenty is the reason I dont get helped.. although I am human and I do get tired sometimes, especially on a busy day!! When I have tried to speak to my manager, she brushes me off and tells me to stop moaning.Please can anyone help with some advice on what to do next?!!?
Squiddgy - 29-Sep-15 @ 2:46 PM
Share Your Story, Join the Discussion or Seek Advice...
Title:
(never shown)
Firstname:
(never shown)
Surname:
(never shown)
Email:
(never shown)
Nickname:
(shown)
Comment:
Validate:
Enter word:
Topics
Latest Comments
Further Reading...
Our Most Popular...
Add to my Yahoo!
Add to Google
Stumble this
Add to Twitter
Add To Facebook
RSS feed
You should seek independent professional advice before acting upon any information on the WorkRelationships website. Please read our Disclaimer.