September 11, 2015

Throw Your Boss Some Love

It’s the first week after Labor Day and while some people are experiencing that “back to school” rush, many are filled with low-grade horror that summer is in their rear view mirror.

It’s tricky when others pick up on this thinking.

With this in mind, I put together five ways to throw your boss some love. Not only will it make you stand out among the end-of-summer malcontents, it will set you up nicely for promotion come bonus time.

Agree and Add: While it’s nice to be agreeable, your boss wants more than a Yes-man or woman. You also need to add value. With this in mind, do more than type the agenda— be prepared to add to it. When your boss says, “What do you think?” your reply needs to be, “That sounds great—and I was thinking we could do X as well.”

Ally or Observer?: Sometimes your boss will need you to take center stage, and sometimes he will need you to play a supporting role. Before meetings, asking, “Do you want me to be an Ally or an Observer?” will ensure you don’t steal his scene. Remember: if you are asked to observe, you’re still on stage. Sit up and forward in your chair. Take notes.

Edit Your RSVP’s: When you know you have the answer, it can be fun to let others in on your smarts. In moments like these, the “Reply All” button is extremely seductive. Don’t be ensnared. Your boss is less likely to appreciate your efforts when you broadcast them far and wide. 

Beware the Incorrect: Yes, you read that right:  “incorrecting” is taking something your boss has said or written correctly and “fixing” it. You may think you’re being helpful, but the fact remains you may be wrong. Check for accuracy before you start—and if your boss is, in fact, incorrect, handle it privately.  

In the Absence of Orders, Initiate Appropriate Action: Many of us are more comfortable giving orders than taking them—so give them to yourself: a great way to stand out is to step into a void when you see an opportunity that’s been overlooked. After you do, don’t blow your own horn. You’ll look better when others sing your praises.

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