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Pitfalls of Hiring a Friend

If you’re responsible for hiring personnel for your company, you might eagerly help a friend who's looking for work. Having your buddy onboard can make your days more enjoyable; and if this person has the skills and experience, it’s a win-win, right?

Although helping your friend secure employment is a wonderful gesture, and he or she will greatly appreciate the assistance, this may not be the best move career-wise. Here’s a look at four potential pitfalls of hiring your friends:

#1 It Might be Harder for you to Remain Productive

Before you hire a friend, honestly consider whether this decision will make it easier or harder for you to work during the day. If you and your friend have a great relationship outside the office, working alongside this person every day may become a distraction. It might be easy to lose your focus, at which time you spend the majority of you day shooting the breeze and having non-work discussions.

#2 Your Friend Might Take Advantage of Your Friendship

Because you and your friend have a relationship outside the office, it might be harder for this person to respect you as his employer.

When you're socialising outside the office, you might playfully argue back-and-forth or take humorous stabs at each other. But at work, you're not equals; and unfortunately, it might be difficult to draw a line between friend and employer.

Additionally, he or she might take advantage of the friendship in little ways, such as enjoying a longer lunch break and arriving to work late. If you mention these issues, your friend may shrug off the complaints.

#3 It Might Affect Your Ability to be Partial

Although you may have a good relationship with all your employees, it doesn’t compare with the relationship with your friend. Therefore, you may inadvertently show favoritism.

When it’s time to promote within the organisation, you may consider your friend for a position without fully considering whether he or she is qualified. And even if your friend is the best person for the job, the decision to promote might create issues between you and other employees. They may believe that the promotion was the direct result of your close relationship.

On the other spectrum, if your friend is the best person for a position, you might hold off offering him a promotion for fear of what others may speculate. No matter what you decide — you can’t win.

#4 It Might be Difficult to Fire a Friend

Unfortunately, hiring a friend doesn't always work out. After this person has been on the job for a while, you may realise that he is unable to complete assignments to your standards. This creates a serious dilemma for you. As the person who hired your friend, it might be your responsibility to fire him.

Handing a friend a pink slip is never comfortable — especially if you’re the decision maker. And depending on how he takes the news, this decision might drive a permanent wedge in your relationship.

So what’s your opinion? Do you think it’s smart to hire a friend? If so why? Comments please.


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'6 Steps to Landing Your Next Job'

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