Some employers prefer to avoid mixing their personal lives with business. Others clearly see the benefit of working with people who know them well. So if you’re considering hiring a good friend to work for you, you need to decide where you stand on that spectrum. Can your friendship survive in the workplace and bring added value to your company?
When you hire a friend as your employee, your personal relationship must be strong and preferably long-standing. Work issues need to remain at the office – and personal matters and feelings shouldn’t cross that threshold.
Stick to these guidelines and the benefits can include:
- Having a work relationship with someone who knows and understands you. The learning curve is shortened as your friend already is accustomed to your style, cares about you, and has an added investment in your success.
- And vice versa. You know your friend, their communication style and work ethic. It’s less of a gamble than hiring someone you don’t know.
- You can save time and money. Recruiting is expensive. You already have a good idea of your friend’s skills, qualifications and background. Equally important, you know that they’ll mesh with your company culture.
Friends are equals. Bosses and employees are not. If you have any concern about ruining your friendship, it could hurt your work performance as well as do irreparable damage to your personal relationship.
- Discipline may be difficult. It probably won’t be easy and it may not have the desired effect. You can’t hold back for fear of hurting their feelings. Or they may brush it off as simply “an old buddy having a bad day.” In a worst-case scenario, you might have to terminate your friend. This casts you as the ultimate bad guy, even if you’re simply making the right business move.
- There may be money issues. Some people are uncomfortable earning less than their friends or holding lower-ranking positions. If ego stands to get in the way, it’s probably best not to hire your BFF.
- The dynamic shifts at work. There can be no professional jealousy, even if your friend is used to making all the decisions related to your social life and plans. Your friendship must be very solid in order to withstand the inevitable stresses of the boss/employee structure.
If you decide to hire your friend, go in with your eyes wide open. Spell out the terms clearly and make sure both parties agree to them. Done right, it could be an excellent move on all counts.
- Write out all employment and benefit details, as well as company policies and procedures. Go over them with your friend and be sure they understand and accept them. Have them sign off and keep a copy of this document on file.
- Hold your friend to the same standards as everyone else. Pressures may arise from time to time due to expectations of a promotion based on friendship rather than merit. And other employees may assume that your friend is being shown favoritism, especially if they do advance within the company.
- Maintain professional decorum in your on-the-job relationship. Keep non-business conversations for non-business hours and venues.
The PrideStaff Fresno recruitment team can partner with you to effectively manage your sourcing, hiring and staff retention strategies. Read our related posts or contact us today for more information.