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October 30th, 2020

ELLY GRIMM • Leader & Times


Managers and bosses at many different companies have many different responsibilities, particularly toward their employees, and today marks an opportunity to express appreciation toward them. 

Today is National Boss’s Day, and it is dedicated to all employers and provides a prospect of improving the liaison between employers and their staff.

“Many leaders carry heavy loads. They oversee many employees and guide their careers, too. While their position holds them responsible for a department, business or organization and leading it to success, their list of responsibilities are multifaceted,” an article on noted. “Some bosses have bosses themselves. Depending on the size on an organization, they answer to someone else. And even if the boss is the owner, they still answer to the taxman, the customers, and their merchants. Keeping a business running smoothly with outstanding employees requires balance.”

“Many workers dedicate this day to their supervisors for various reasons, such as supporting staff with their jobs and careers. This observance also gives employees a chance to recognize those in supervisory positions,” an article on noted. “Some people give their bosses cards, gift certificates, or flowers on Boss’s Day. This observance is becoming increasingly popular in various workplaces. Boss’s Day is an observance and not a nationwide public holiday in the United States. If it falls on a weekend, then it is celebrated on the working day closest to it.” 

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The concept of National Boss’s Day, according to the article, began in 1958. 

“The concept of National Boss Day began in 1958 when Patricia Bays Haroski, then an employee at State Farm Insurance Company in Deerfield, Ill., registered the holiday with the United States Chamber of Commerce,” the article noted. “She designated Oct. 16 as the special day because it was her father's birthday. Haroski's purpose was to designate a day to show appreciation for her boss and other bosses. She also hoped to improve the relationship between employees and supervisors. Four years later in 1962, Illinois Governor Otto Kerner backed Haroski's registration and officially proclaimed the day. The event’s popularity is growing outside the United States and is now also observed in countries such as Australia, India, and South Africa.”

Different customs for National Boss’s Day are observed in many different offices, according to an article from 

“Traditionally, Boss’s Day is celebrated by an employee giving their boss or supervisor a card. However, in recent years gifts given on Boss’s Day have begun to become a little bigger than just a card,” the article noted. “People are giving candy and chocolates, and some offices are pooling their money together to buy even bigger gifts.”

However, the holiday has also received some controversy in recent years.

“Bosses should thank employees, not the other way around. Case closed,” an opinion from noted. “Even if your boss pampers you, fights for you, and goes out of their way for you. Bosses are thanked every time that you make them look good, every time you let them concentrate on another project because they know you have yours under control, every time they get promoted. Mark Stevens, president of the marketing firm MSCO and the author of Your Marketing Sucks, offered his take on Bosses Day, saying ‘It’s the dumbest idea I have ever heard of. It is my job, and that of every leader, to celebrate my team not to have them go through the motions of a Hallmark day for me.’ Adam Koos, Founder & President of Libertas Wealth Management Group, Inc., added ‘Being a business owner, I think that I can tell whether my employees appreciate me, just by their actions, random comments, and general demeanor. I don’t need a day, event, appreciation event, and certainly no gifts. Their liking me, taking care of my clients first, and thus, taking care of the company is more than enough.’”

“Boss's Day observances are no longer confined to handing the boss a simple card. In many offices, the expectations have turned into celebrations that involve money – employees' money – to buy gifts and meals. Because these are often group expenditures, employees often worry that not chipping in will make them look bad, and that kind of pressure is inappropriate in the workplace. Employees should never feel pressured to dip into their own funds to pay for a gift to the boss,” an article from the U.S. News and World Report noted. “Also, good bosses are sensitive to the power dynamics (and often financial disparities) that exist between managers and employees, and they don't want employees feeling even slightly obligated to shell out for this type of thing. So the holiday ends up rewarding the bosses who don't care that their subordinates feel pressured to give them gifts, while making the good bosses feel awkward and uncomfortable.”

No matter how or where it is celebrated, however, Boss’s Day continues to be a way to express appreciation for the managers and supervisors who are in charge of making sure things keep running.

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