10 Easy Things You Can Do To Please Your Boss
If you want to get promoted or, at least, get a pay increase, you must have a good working relationship with your boss. While in theory everything would depend on your performance, in real life, other things come into play. So in addition to the usual ways like working hard, you must be knowledgeable of other things that would please your boss.
Before beginning your search for easy ways that would work, it helps to know the things likely to flop. The number one fallacy is the tendency of people to engage in flattery. This is a cheap shot that almost all managers quickly spot and will likely make them distrust you. Praise must always be sincere; flattery will work only on insecure people.
The problem with the usual methods of scoring brownie points is that they may have reached the point of diminishing return. You can put in more overtime but the additional pay you are getting may no longer be worth sacrificing your family time or physical health for. But there are some effortless things you may have overlooked that have been proven effective:
Remember to greet your boss on special occasions. There are so many occasions, and so much work, that it is quite likely that you will overlook one of them. A partial list includes their birthday, Father or Mother’s day, and Valentine’s Day. You may think that this is no big deal, but it does count somehow. If you do not write these things down, there is a good chance you will miss one of them. The effect of your forgetting to greet your boss may be more than you can afford.
Be respectful. Besides the usual “Sir” or “Ma’am”, be careful not to act in a childish manner or to make inappropriate jokes. Never forget to show respect for your boss even outside the work setting.
Smile. This is nice for the customers and pleasant, too, for your boss. It costs nothing and will signal your boss that you are motivated and intend to make this day a pleasant one.
Be honest in little things. It is not that you should be dishonest in big things. What this means is that your boss will base his assessment of your honesty on your behavior, on what appears to be petty stuff in the absence of better knowledge. If you appear to engage in petty theft like taking home office supplies, then you are likely to be branded as untrustworthy for bigger responsibilities.
Be early. You may say this is difficult, but is coming to the office 15 or 30 minutes earlier than usual really too much work? The beneficial impact of that few minutes of sacrifice is way out of proportion to the difficulty of the task.
When needed, do what is not in your job description. Despite what your job description says, there are times when the practical thing is to do a task, even if it is not your job, as long as you are capable and qualified to do so.
Occasionally do what is below your status. Related to the above is the refusal to do a task usually done by a lower level employee. A frequent example of this is when there is trash lying around and the person assigned happens to be absent. It would be to your credit to be the one to dispose of it.
Give relevant feedback. To be able to manage well, your boss needs adequate feedback that is often not possible to get without the willingness of subordinates, like your frank opinion on how the staff is reacting to a certain new policy, for example. Do not, however, do this as a way to put down your co-workers. Your manager will view such as merely biased at best or a blatant lie at worst.
Don’t badmouth your boss. It is highly probable that whatever negative thing you say about your boss will eventually reach him via the grapevine. The worst thing is that by the time it reaches him, chances are it would have been grossly exaggerated.
Give top priority to your boss’ priorities. You may be doing what you believe should be done first, but that is not for you to decide if you wish to be rated well. It is best to consult with your boss regarding what should come first. This may take some time to work out because what is important may not be urgent, so deadlines and milestones must be established.
You can think of countless ways that will improve your standing with your boss. However, you must keep in mind that these are just supplementary to your work output. But the beauty about these little things is that they do count a lot.
*Originally published by the Manila Bulletin. C-4, Sunday, July 1, 2012. Written by Ruben Anlacan, Jr. (President, BusinessCoach, Inc.) All rights reserved. May not be reproduced or copied without express written permission of the copyright holders.