Tips for learning how to manage your boss

December 10, 2010
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In this day and age, many managers and bosses expect employees to have opinions and be a part of the decision-making process. The hardest part about managing your boss is developing the right frame of mind to manage them.

Many of us will find this unnatural at first as it goes against everything we were taught in the past. But once you do knock down those walls, the benefits will start pouring in for you.

Here are a few tips:

1. Contribute to the decision-making process. In order to expedite the decision-making process, lend your boss a hand. Do this by specifically telling your boss what you expect and need from them, summarizing the options available and voicing your suggestion. Decisions are better made when multiple perspectives are explored.

 

2. Help manage their time. Most bosses tend to juggle a lot of things at once. When this is the case, it is easy for something you need to slip through the cracks, as it may not be as big a priority for them as it is for you. Enforcing a deadline on your boss may seem like being insubordinate, but 90 percent of the time, they welcome the structuring.

 

3. Offer suggestions when asking for an opinion. This goes hand-in-hand with tip No. 1. If a boss wanted to run the entire company alone, they would not have hired you. One of the best things you can do for your boss when you need their opinion is to come prepared with not only questions but also possible options or suggestions. The more prepared you are, the less time it takes to sort through whatever you are addressing.

 

4. Avoid adding to their work pile. Making more work for your boss does not benefit anyone. Information overload just causes undue stress, which leads to hasty decisions, and hasty decisions lead to mistakes. Condense data and bullet list information that you present to your boss so that they can quickly and easily process it.

 

5. Bring solutions when reporting a problem. The ongoing theme to this e-tip is the idea of employee/employer being a two-way street. Such is true when facing problems. Most problems have several aspects to them. The trick is figuring out which of these aspects is what you need to bring to your boss’ attention. Dumping the problem at large on them is tantamount to passing the buck.

In today’s business world, smaller and more efficient business environments necessitate a new kind of team dynamic. While the roles remain the same, the relationship between a boss and an employee should be based more on sharing the decision-making responsibilities.

Helping your boss with his or her workload, especially those with a Type A personality, will help alleviate everyone’s work stress. After all, happier management makes for happier employees!

This post is brought to you by the good folks at Dale Carnegie Training of Central & Southern New Jersey. We would love to connect with you on Facebook and Twitter @CarnegieJersey.

Photo credit: Nieve44/La Luz

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