- 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