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Manage Your Boss
Dr. Greg Ketchum, 8/7/04
Your relationship with your boss is one
of the most important relationships in
your life, not more important than family,
because your boss is a key player in the
course of your career.
Let’s Look at Some
Be very proactive in managing the boss relationship.
In the old days organizations were more “command
& control” so employees were in a more passive
role expecting the boss to tell them what to do.
Now people are being given much more responsibility
and autonomy. Bosses are too busy to be thinking
much about their relationship with you as they
are under pressure to deliver results, so it’s
up to insure you get what you need & that
Gallup poll of more than
1 million US workers found that the #1 reason
people quite their jobs is a bad boss. People
leave managers not companies.
Further, Gallup found that
poorly managed work groups are on average
50% less productive and 44% less profitable
than well-managed groups.
- Web site Badbossology.com surveyed 1,118
people & found that half would fire
our boss if we could, 30% would send their
boss to a workplace psychologist, but
only 23% would send them to management
What to Do
We know you need to take a proactive role
in managing that relationship and here are some
ideas for you. Remember, you can’t change your
boss so you’ve got to change yourself. This
is also called “managing up.”
- Success Lies in Managing Expectations &
Priorities: Have a meeting to determine
what your boss expects of you and what s/he
sees as the priorities of your role. Write it
down. Manage to expectations.
- Learn How to Communicate & Deliver
News: How does your boss prefer news? Email,
vm, memo, in person? Do they want details or
- Come Up with Solutions, Not Problems:
If you’ve got an issue or problem go to your
boss with a couple of solutions, not just the
- Learn How to Sell Your Ideas: To get
what you want & get your ideas accepted
you’ve got to learn how to “sell,” make the
case for them.
- Help Your Boss to Be Successful: This
is one of your main goals. If your boss is successful,
you’ll most likely be successful.
In a future segment we’ll talk specifically about how
to manage a “bad” boss, the bully, harasser, incompetent
or the boss who want to be your “pal.”
If you’ve got work or career topics you’d like to see
us address, just send me an email at email@example.com.
®2004 All rights reserved. Gregory
A. Ketchum, Ph.D.