Managing your boss is an important part of any career and should be a very high priority for focused action. Take this as the first and foremost challenge as you begin your career. Remember you can’t choose your boss like we have no choice for selecting our parents.
Managing boss with no compromise on your own values, with no compromise on your professional integrity and no compromise on your personal and family life, is a significant ability one needs to develop over a period.
This needs attention 24/7 and 365 days. First and foremost, you must have an ability to figure out as to what time in the day Boss as a person is most receptive. Is it 10 AM or 3 PM or any other time?
Time may vary from individual to individual. All of us on different days have different Emotional, Intellectual and Physical levels. The percentage of level can vary say from 1- 100. This is applicable to you as a boss. Now, these levels vary during the daytime as well and peaks at a given hour.
Recall that one of my very learned boss, who always rated me very high, (when I was handling an important assignment) was at his worst behaviour in the morning first hours say 10 AM to 11 AM. Whosoever went to him during this time came back with a long face, dissatisfied with everything and big No for anything and everything. He had his own priorities to do in this hour or needed to be in isolation. The hangover of the last night was not ruled out.
Another accomplished and real hard working, always in a learning mode boss of mine had time for me only at 1930 hrs., when everyone was at home. This was when I was not handling an urgent assignment, but it was an important assignment. It was very irritating to wait until that time. Time spent was valuable. Gains on subject knowledge front, developmental issues, lessons on small things on how to start a communication, mode of communication email, snail mail or phone were of immense value which I hold so dear to me even now and were a lifetime education.
Leverage your Boss’s capability, for which you must figure out what is he best at. One of the bosses I recall had such a solid network of Police, Bureaucracy, Political circles, Customers, Competition, Industry and Industry associations and he knew who can influence whom and for what. Always approached him and a telephone call from him was enough to kick-start the entire action. He knew who knows what, when and how it should be approached. When and how to approach part was equally important for him to take next steps.
When is about best time zone for the person to be approached? When is he in the best receptive mood? Is it morning, afternoon or evening?
These small but significant questions are always relevant.
‘How’ part was whether the subject needs a telephonic conversation, personal meeting or even side discussions in a get together will be good enough. Depending upon the importance of the help sought, venue and associated breakfast, lunch or dinner (business or fine dining) were arranged.
- # Professionals good at work and they would come to him for guidance or approval with all completed staff work and Boss will not have to apply his mind.
- # Professionals good at errand jobs of low intensity.
- #Professionals good at menial and fun jobs.
He was a perfect example of delegating work as per the capability of the person in the team. He was always spending quality time on all the relevant issues, be it work related, or fun or entertainment related. Learning which emerged was that you must leverage on the capability of others rather than making efforts to bring 3rd category person above to the first category. It will be a waste of time and will lead to frustration both for the boss and subordinate.
Learn to hold your tensions; you can’t be passing on everything to your boss all the time.
Your priorities can’t be ahead of your boss’s priorities. These are few basics, but then for each individual and each relation, list of do’s and don’ts will be different.
If you find your boss is toxic , still you may have to figure out the ways without compromise.