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How Well Do You Manage Your Boss?

Are you in this situation? You and your boss just don't seem to connect and work well together. It isn't that you are having knock down fights. It's just that you know things could be better. You don't want to look for another job so you have to figure out how to make it work. Basically it's your responsibility to manage your boss. Here are tips that can get you on the right track.

Know thy boss.
No two people think alike or work alike. No two bosses either. Your job is to find out her specific 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 there is ay thing to report or to discuss ? even when there is the slightest change?

Make the boss as effective as possible.
Go to her and ask: "What do I do and what do my people do that helps you do your job? And what do we do that hampers you and makes life more difficult for you?" You need to find out what your boss needs and what gets in the way. Also realize that it is in your self interest to make the boss successful.

Keep the boss aware.
Make sure she understands the following: What can be expected of you and your people; your goals and objectives; and most important your specific priorities. 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!

Marcia Zidle, the 'people smarts' coach, works with business leaders to quickly solve their people management headaches so they can concentrate on their #1 job ­ to grow and increase profits. She offers free help through Leadership Briefing, a weekly e-newsletter with practical tips on leadership style, employee motivation, recruitment and retention and relationship management. Subscribe by going to and get the bonus report "61 Leadership Time Savers and Life Savers". Marcia is the author of the What Really Works Handbooks ­ resources for managers on the front line and the Power-by-the-Hour programs ­ fast, convenient, real life, affordable courses for leadership and staff development. She is available for media interviews, conference presentations and panel discussions on the hottest issues affecting the workplace today. Contact Marcia at 800-971-7619.

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