Not many people will have the opportunity to become a boss of other employees.
If you work within a business culture though, you most certainly do work for a boss.
There are many pieces of advice in the world which lay out ways for you to be a great boss, but not many which help you manage up to your own boss.
Within her book, Managing Up, Abbajay offers us insights into how to effectively manage up, and we’ll review three of these insights:
1) Introverted and Extroverted bosses require different communication styles
2) Build better relationships with micromanager bosses by gaining their trust
3) Sometimes the only way to deal with a horrible boss is to walk away
Lesson 1: Introverted and Extroverted bosses require different communication style
When looking to develop an interpersonal relationship with your boss, you need to determine if they are introverted or extroverted.
You can easily do this by observing their communication style and energy level.
If your boss tends to be very reflective and only offers you an opinion when it is asked for, typically this person is an introvert.
On the other hand, if your boss shares information with you willingly and they will have a friendly demeanor, this more than likely means they are an extrovert.
Depending on your boss’s personality, you may need to be more pro-active in setting up meetings or to listen more and showing interest in what they are saying.
Your approach to managing up is finding the right communication style which fits your boss.
Lesson 2: Build better relationships with Micromanager bosses by gaining their trust
If you have a boss who constantly is asking what you are doing and looking over your shoulder while you work, then your boss is a Micromanager.
A Micromanager can stifle your career potential.
The best way to stay on track is to develop trust with this kind of boss.
The easiest way to do this is to consistently perform at or above standard levels.
You can also show how dependable you are and communicate with your boss, more than normal.
This includes even smaller details you would not normally communicate.
For example, if you are going to be a few minutes late for the day, or need some extra time for lunch, you should tell them this in order to build trust which is vitally needed to further your career.
Lesson 3: Sometimes the best way to deal with a horrible boss is to walk away.
Most everyone is taught at an early age to not quit something you have started.
However, there are times when you must move on from the situation you are in at work.
This is especially true if you are dreading the workday or are spending an enormous amount of mental energy on things besides your work.
You may never get back the time and effort you have put into the current workplace.
You can prevent yourself from losing out on future joy and production by finding a boss and a career which is more fulfilling.
You can take control of your career and become fulfilled and successful by making the right choice.
My Personal Takeaway
After reading and summarising Managing Up, I felt that I am more in control of my employee-situation than I believed I was before reading it.
I am working in digital marketing in a fairly small firm, and I believe that managing up definitely is a good guideline of how to manage and administer your career and making the most out of it.
Also, the various tactics relating to micro-managing bosses makes a lot of sense. Bosses micromanage because they don’t trust that you can achieve what they want. By figuring out exactly what you boss is looking for and achieving results that are on or over expectations will slowly make your boss give you more space.
Overall, a really nice read that gave me a sense of empowerment over my career.
Put into Action
- Figure out what kind of personality your boss have, and try to adapt and align your communication tactics and style after your observations.
- Work hard early in your relationship with your boss to gain their trust, and avoid the annoyances of being micro-managed.
- Don’t put up with everything. If your boss really is an impossible person to work with and it’s not only you that share that opinion throughout the company, find another department, or even a new company.
This book is great for anyone that wants to give their career som new life and feel more empowered in determining their career by managing up. Best of luck with your career and hope this summary has given you some pointers on what you can do.
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