“My boss and I just don’t seem to connect and work well together. It isn't that we’re having knocked down fights. It’s just that I know things could be better. I don’t want to look for another job. How do I make it work?”
Here are four guidelines for managing your boss problems so that your career won’t get stalled or sidetracked.
1. Make sure you are on the same wave length.
No two people think alike or work alike. No two bosses either. Your job is to find out and perform to her expectations – not to reform her, reeducate her or make her conform to what the management books recommend. For example: Does she want me to come in once a month and spend 30 minutes presenting the plans and performance of my team? Or does she want me to come in every time to report even when there’s a slight change?
2. Don’t hide.
It’s natural to yield to the tendency to minimize interaction with people we don’t see eye to eye with. Reducing your daily contact can cause a further loss of trust and respect on both sides. And a lack of communication can foster misunderstanding, mistakes and more problems.
3. Keep the boss in the loop.
Bosses, after all, are held responsible by their own bosses for the performance of their people. They must be able to say: “I know what Anne (or Joe) is doing.” Bosses don’t like surprises! Beside it’s in your self interest to make the boss successful.
4. Don’t bad-mouth.
Handle disagreements with your boss with particular care. Let him know of your concerns and suggest other alternatives or ideas. Support your manager’s position in public. Avoid war at all cost. The painful reality is that the boss has better access to power and influence at the top.
Smart Moves Tip:
Let go of your frustration. If you resent working under a manager you don’t like, you might perform below your abilities. Don’t let yourself fall into that trap. It could be a career killer. In the best case scenario, the boss can leave, you may get transferred to a more promising area or you may find that he or she wasn’t so bad after all.
How well do you manage your boss? What are some of the issues that won’t seem to go away? How can you do it better to get better results?
Do you know what YOU do today will directly influence your career in 3, 5 or 10 years?
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Copyright © 2011 Marcia Zidle - the Actualizer – career strategist and leadership coach.