“A good boss makes his men realize they have more ability than they think they have so that they consistently do better work than they thought they could.”
– Charles Erwin Wilson
Up until the mid 1990s the relationship between employer and employee was the usual “boss – subordinate” type of predictable atmosphere. But at the turn of the millennium new changes had emerged in the way professional relationships work in the office and suddenly managers want more proactive employees who has the courage to contribute to the company’s progress. The late Steve Jobs pioneered this concept when he started his company, Apple Inc. and the result was astounding! He made a billion-dollar company from scratch and rumor has it that even Bill Gates cashed in on his concept also.
A New Paradigm
Change ushers in a new paradigm shift and in the corporate world it means that instead of just taking orders all the time, you then contribute ideas, methods and strategies to help your boss enhance your workload. Thus you become an efficient employee and your contributions will even be visible in the company stats when measured against its overall progress. And you know what this means? Promotion! The hardest part of implementing this concept is that people have that fear of overstepping their boundaries that causes them to become inert. Well, I’m not saying that you should overstep your boundaries; all I’m saying is that you own up your hurdles and manage up your boss in the right way.
Here’s how to do it:
- Own it
So you’ve decided to dip your arm into the water and hope to catch something big, but don’t expect this to be a walk in the park, because sometimes you’ll get more than the bite that you’re expecting. When problems arise don’t let your emotions get in the way, continue with your work in the way that you suggested it to your boss; fix the issues that you can by yourself, but for other issues that you think you may need help, speak up and let your boss know that you need help. Finally do not ever blame anyone else for the obstacles that comes your way, instead overcome it. You’ll feel a lot better in the end and you’ll get a ton of kudos from your boss as well as your peers.
The problem with a well-laid plan is that there’s always something that’s going to screw it up. Whether deliberate or accidental you can bet that your plans will go through storms that you’ve never encountered before, so it pays to be prepared. Seeing that you’ve already plan a strategy, it isn’t good to only focus on the butter cakes but also how to deal with dynamites. Anticipate the problems that may come your way, play out possible scenarios on how the plan might fail and come up with realistic solutions to patch it up and see it through to the end. If you do this, then your chances of success will have doubled and you fortify your plans better.
- Talk it out
Okay, so during the first 2 tips what you have done is mostly a conservative method of fixing small and sometimes notable issues here and there in order to help manage your boss. But now it is time to use your voice to maximize the effects of your contributions to the employer and the company as a whole. Remember to update your boss regularly, even the smallest of issues that he/she may or may not know is still a crucial point in the whole “managing up” thing. So while your boss manages you, you also reciprocate this action and as a result you not only helped them help you, but also helped yourself to perform diligently at the job.
Managing your boss actually helps avoid them judging and rebuking you for doing a less than satisfactory job, after all your job performance is a reflection of them not doing a good enough job in managing you. So if you think about it, you’re actually doing yourself a huge favor.