Do You Frequently CC the Boss When Emailing Co-Workers?

Does the boss request that she be CC’d to stay in the loop? Research from the University of Cambridge suggests that this damages trust.

To many, copying the boss on emails is a clear signal that you suspect they’ll under deliver. It can feel like a strong-arm tactic to get someone to comply, rather than a convenient way to invite the boss into the conversation. Furthermore, employees with existing trust issues tend to see copying the boss as evidence that overall organizational trust is low.

David De Cremer, head of Cambridge’s Department of Organizational Leadership and Decision-Making says, “the more often you include a supervisor on emails to co-workers, the less trusted those co-workers feel.” He adds that companies should realize that complete transparency in email is not the Holy Grail. Rampant CCing is not just about time management. It’s also about a company’s culture.