Part of being a great manager, boss, and leader is understanding what your employees and team want from you.

Although it may be difficult to generalize what employees want, through our own research and studies, we have found the top 8 things every employee wants from their boss.

While many items on this list may seem obvious, all too often managers take their employees’ needs for granted and forgo the basic courtesies.

By providing employees with what they want, and oftentimes what they need, a manager is better able to motivate, collaborate, and push forward stronger than before.

Our below list of the 8 things every employee wants from their boss has been curated through studies, interviews, and discussions with employees throughout various industries and career levels.

We discussed the needs and wants with these employees in a confidential, private manner, allowing them to be fully honest and transparent.

Be Proactive on Employee Concerns and Suggestions

Perhaps the number one suggestion we heard throughout various industries and workplaces from employees was the need for managers to be proactive on employee concerns and suggestions.

From our discussions, many individuals complained of providing suggestions and voicing concerns, only to have their suggestions fall on deaf ears.

As a manager, it is your responsibility to take your employees’ concerns and suggestions seriously.

However, this does not mean that every suggestion must be implemented.

Rather, as a manager, it is your responsibility and duty to be transparent and let your employees know why a suggestion may not be particularly feasible.

Be Transparent

Following up on the need to be proactive, a majority of employees surveyed requested additional transparency and openness from their management team.

While, as a manager, it can be difficult to be completely honest, especially on sensitive issues, you should be able to discern what can and cannot be shared with your team.

As a manager, your team looks to you for updates and for honest feedback.

This honesty and transparency not only helps to create a more engaged workplace but also creates an atmosphere of collaboration and mutual respect.

8 Things Every Employee Wants from Their Boss

Recognize and Show Appreciation

Your employees show up to work day after day and ensure that the needs of the role and the company are completed.

Oftentimes, these employees do so with little to no recognition, which can foster resentment and discontent.

A simple, yet effective, way to dampen these feelings of resentment and increase overall employee morale is to provide employees with a simple thank you and a good job.

These remarks let your team know that you see their efforts and that they are not going to waste.

If you’re unsure of some ways to show appreciation to your team, feel free to check out our article on employee appreciation ideas.

These ideas can help you to get started in showing your team that you appreciate their work and the effort they put in day after day.

Be Empathetic and Understanding

Oftentimes, as a manager, it may be difficult to recognize the stresses and complications that occur during the course of the workweek.

For your employees, particularly those on the front line, they must deal with and handle these stresses professionally and cordially.

As a manager, it is important to empathize and understand the stresses your team faces.

Although you may not be able to assist in every situation and predicament, you should be a helping hand and show your team that you understand the difficulty they are going through.

Share Your Expectations

One of the top 8 things every employee wants from their boss is for them to be direct on what their expectations are.

Let’s face it, none of us here are mind readers.

As such, it is important to be direct and let your employees know exactly what your expectations are.

Letting your employees know what your expectations are and sharing your requirements with them will not only help them to achieve those expectations but will also build a stronger relationship between you two.

8 Things Every Employee Wants from Their Boss

Stand Up for Them

One of the main things we heard from employees across industries is the fact that employees want their managers and bosses to stand up for them. 

As a manager, it is your responsibility to build and protect your team. 

Even if a mistake is made, the responsibility for conveying that mistake falls on your shoulders.

Ask More Questions

Too often, especially as a manager, it is easy to believe that you understand all the nuances and intricacies which go on in the work of your staff.

However, often, employees are working on tasks and projects which you may not be fully informed of.

A good manager asks good questions and looks to understand the work their employees are doing on a daily basis.

Be Human

By far, one of the top 8 things every employee wants from their boss is to simply be human!

Employees look to their managers for assistance, support, and motivation.

As a manager, you should be human and show your staff that you are all in this together.

By showing your human, real side, you can create a much deeper, more long-lasting bond with your employees and staff, ultimately reducing turnover and increasing employee retention.


As a manager, it is important to understand the needs of your employees. 

Understanding their needs will not only help you to be a better manager but will also help you to create a more motivated and engaged team. 

We’ve discussed the top 8 things every employee wants from their boss and hope this list will help to make you the best manager you can be!

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