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Categories: Inspiration

How to Succeed at Work – Respect Those in Authority

It is wonderful to succeed at work by respecting those in authority.
Many people are at work complaining about how much they hate the supervisor, how stupid the boss is and how no one running the company has a good idea about anything. For these people, respect for those in authority is a foreign concept. It is no wonder that people with this attitude find it difficult to succeed in the workplace. It reminds me of a line from a Staples Singers song, “if you disrespect everyone that you run into, how in the world to you expect anyone to respect you?”
Let’s say you are the smartest person, the hardest worker, best person ever at your job. That does not excuse your lack of respect for those in authority. Respect for those in authority is a Biblical principle as well as good manners.  There are a few synonyms for respect including:
  • regard
  • esteem
  • reference
  • deference
  • consideration
Those in authority at your place of employment make it possible for you to collect your paycheck. That alone is sufficient for them to be treated with respect. When you treat those in authority with respect you do the following:
  • show up to work early enough so that you are at your work-station at start time, not entering the building
  • do your job completely and with a good attitude
  • do not verbally disparage those in authority during the day at the workplace
  • talk to those in authority in a calm manner that reflects esteem


These rules of behavior for how to treat those in authority with respect does not mean you have to like those in authority. In fact, it does not matter at all whether or not you like or admire those in authority at your place of employment. Like has nothing to do with it. Respect requires that you exercise proper behavior even if you do not like those in authority. The main take-away is that respect is something you do because of who you are and because it is right.
If you are at a point where you are no longer able to treat those with authority with respect, it is time for you to seek employment elsewhere. If you do decide to seek employment elsewhere, leave in a respectful manner because you may encounter those same people in a different place of employment. So, the question for you this wonderful day is, what do you do at work to show respect for those in authority?
Janeane Davis

View Comments

  • At times my supervisor is difficult. I just try to focus on doing my work the best way that I can and being supportive to those on my team. I do try and lookout for my supervisor when I can, more for our team's benefit than her specifically.

    • It is difficult to work with a difficult supervisor, but, sometimes it is unavoidable. It is nice that you find a way to make it work.

  • Too bad so many people in management don't follow these rules. I've had some horrible bosses in my career who've succeeded without being nice or respectful.

    • Joyce you are right, many people do succeed without learning how to behave. LIke you, I don't want to be one of them.

  • I am true believer in "treat others as you would want to be treated"... Sometimes your job might not have that same vision in mind... Over the past ten years I have had my share of situations that caused me to longer respect where I was ... I searched for another job and put a positive spin on why I was leaving... Like you mention you never know when you will see/need these same people later on in your career.

    • Yes, this is another example of the Golden Rule.

  • good points. show respect so that no one can speak ill of you later.

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