According to the Stanford Research Institute, knowing how to successfully manage relationships with people contributes more than 85 cents on the dollar toward your total income. One of the most complicated relationships to manage is the one you have with your boss. But developing that relationship and establishing a great synergy and rapport can be the key to your career success. Create a great working relationship with your boss and it will earn you a valuable seat at the table.
Every successful relationship is built on mutually beneficial connections and shared accomplishments. What is it that your boss really wants, and how can you help them achieve it? Where are the gaps in their skill set and the weaknesses in their leadership toolkit?
Where can they turn for candid, honest feedback and helpful critique, when they may be expected to constantly project an image of confidence? If times are unpredictable do they have someone near them who is a solid rock of support?
If you can use your own professional presence, reliability, and strength to complement your boss’s effectiveness, you’ll become a great team. Your boss will succeed and will know that you deserve the credit – so both of your careers will be rewarded
Remain Trustworthy and Supportive
One of the biggest issues that people in positions of power and responsibility wrestle with is a feeling of isolation. They often need to relax and be themselves, but they’re afraid to let down their guard or step outside of the role of being “Boss.”
What if they need advice, is there someone they can ask who won’t try to manipulate or exploit them? Who can they confide in and trust? When the office gossip starts, is there someone who ignores it and remains open-minded and nonjudgmental?
Become that reliable rock in your boss’s life and it can lead to a really satisfying professional partnership that teaches you priceless lessons about teamwork and strong leadership.
In some cases you may dislike your boss, but you’re stuck with each other, at least for the time being. The strategy that many less experienced employees default to in this situation is to pretend to get along by feigning respect.
But solutions like that, based on a false premise, are never advisable. They simply undermine your own authenticity and credibility – which will weaken your leadership in the minds of others who are on your team.
Great leaders must know how to work with all types of people and they especially need to learn ways to manage those above them. Invest the time, energy, and thought into figuring out how to create a scalable relationship with your boss, built around real meaning, substance, and mutual benefit.
Developing a positive, symbiotic relationship with your boss will exponentially accelerate your career path, because they have incredible leverage and influence when it comes to promoting you. Sell them on your value-add and they’ll do the harder and more complicated work of marketing your advancement onward and upward to top decision makers.
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Sarah Hathorn is a leadership development mentor, executive presence coach, image and branding consultant, public speaker & author. She is the founding CEO of her own successful company, Illustra Consulting, and the creator of the proprietary Predictable Promotion™ System.
1-800-267-3245 | www.illustraconsulting.com
Copyright © 2013, Sarah Hathorn, AICI CIP, CPBS