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  • To what extent do you personally agree with the sociologist’s findings and distrust the sincerity of your work colleagues?

I do personally agree with the sociologist’s findings, from personal  experience I’m sure we’ve all had the experience of creating work  friends but keeping them at a distance when getting to know one another.  Many times distrust comes from the fact that we “have” to get along  with one another for the betterment of the company or our work quality. A  forced friendship isn’t always the best route to go when creating  bonds, but on the other end of it it allows us to build connections to  people we would have never made if it weren’t for work. Being in the  military I have met loads of people from all walks of life from across  the country. I wouldn’t automatically trust these people with personal  information about my life, but over time building a repore helps close  those gaps when you start to discover commonality between each other  outside of the work aspect. Cooley made it clear that at the end of the  utility friendship that if the purpose can not be achieved then there  would be no sense in continuing the friendship (Cooley, 2002).  Many of  the connections I have made were only for the moment, once I have  accomplished what I sought to accomplish I would move on to the next  task. Not that I wouldn’t consider my battle buddies from the past  friends, but our relationships were solely for growth and advancement in  the military. Many of my connections didn’t go deeper than that of  greetings.

  • What has been your own experience with enacting friendships of  utility and/or feigning friendship in order to secure your employment or  future career prospects? Do you believe this is ethical? Explain your  answer.

I’ve ranked up in the military do to my own work ethic but also  building relationships with senior non-commissioned officers in my unit  and battalion. By strengthening these relationships I have been able to  network and also build favor with many people in order to further my  career. By doing this I’ve also have become someone who is reliable thus  when a task is needed my first sergeant calls me first. While that can  be overbearing at times, I know that when I need to get into a class or  when opportunities come up for the betterment of career advancement, I  know I will be favored to get offered those opportunities. Friendship of  utility would definitely define my friendships with all my battle  buddies. I do believe this is ethical because with out that concept in  our relationships with people, a lot of us would be stagnant in our  careers. We ourselves offer something to our work, in that something we  can reap the benefits if that something provides a positive growth  within the company or place of employment. If I hadn’t made connections  with my senior NCOs, I probably would still be a specialist (E4). I’m  currently a Sergeant (E5) and promotable to Staff Sergeant (E6). I’ve  always followed the mentality of do what you must to have what you want,  and I believe creating positive relationships with your colleagues is  the best way to build your career. 

Cooley, D. R. (2002). “False Friends. (Links to an external site.)” Journal of Business Ethics. (195-207).   Netherlands: Kluwer Academic Publishers. [PDF, File Size 1.1MB]  Retrieved from  http://vlib.excelsior.edu/login?url=http://search.ebscohost.com/login.aspx?direct=true&db=bth&AN=12130506&site=eds-live&scope=site

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