Productive Ways to Serve your Boss
- Esteem her opinion above yours. Don’t get into unnecessary power tussle with your boss. What you have to say will not count unless you first acknowledge and accept what she says first.
- Provide alternative solutions. When you spot something that you think to be wrong with a decision or the organization, don’t just go about melancholily pointing out the wrong. State as an opinion that you think that the way something is done is wrong, and provide well-thought-out alternatives. This will serve as an indicator that you have the best interest of the organization at heart.
- To disagree with her, appeal to her ego not her reason. The truth is you will not always be comfortable with your boss’ decisions or orders. If you can’t take it, gently point out to her what you think is not right with the decision, and help her see how your offering will help her to get better results.
NOTE: If disagreeing with your boss is somewhat habitual, she’d not be interested in your suggestions, even when they are obviously better than hers. The relationship is already tensed up, and it will require quite some time to heal up. Swallow your pride, and do whatever she wants you to do.
- Do your job well, and on time. The best way to serve your boss is to be the best on your job. Do your job excellently, and as fast as possible. Always enlarge your capacity, and make every attempt an improvement of the previous. The better you are on your job, the more comfortable your boss would be to trust your decision-making ability, and your opinions.
- Be a “go-to player”. John C. Maxwell pointed out in his classic 3600 Leader, that one of the best ways to Lead Up is to be a “go-to player”. This means to become so relevant that when there is any challenge, especially when it is most urgent, you are the first name that comes to mind as a solutions provider. With this kind of attitude, Ceteris paribus, you’d always be on your boss’ good books.
- Offer to help her. When you see that your boss seems to be quite busy, offer to be of help. You can ask her gently: “How can I be of help to you?” You will see the smiles on her face, even if she doesn’t want to delegate anything at the moment, she’d take it to heart that you care.
- Ask about her family. Occasionally, ask your boss questions that are not directly linked to the job. Ask to know about her family and life in general. However, be sensitive not to be too informal, or to push her to a point where it becomes uncomfortable for her.
- Remember important dates to her. You may ask about her birthday, wedding, children’s birthday etc. and send her a message or buy her gifts on those days. She’d see you as more than a subordinate, but a part of her own life.
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