Bosses: You can’t live with ’em, and unless you’re an entrepreneur, you can’t live without ’em. For better or worse, our workplace supervisors play huge roles in our lives, and according to Teri Hockett, chief executive for the women’s career site What’s For Work?, they have the power to influence our careers and affect our health and well-being.
“They can make the workplace exciting and something to look forward to each day, or a place that you dread visiting,” Hockett recently told Forbes writer Jacquelyn Smith for a piece titled “14 Tips For Improving Your Relationship With Your Boss.”
“Without a good relationship, they may not speak highly of you or consider nominating you to other positions, departments or companies, regardless of your performance,” Hockett adds. “And third, having a good relationship with your boss just makes sense. Work consumes most of your time usually, and having good relationships will make things more enjoyable and lead to opportunities.”
How can you ensure cordial, mutually respectful interactions with your boss? Smith’s article is a good place to start, though a recent Jobs & Hire story titled “How to Create a Good and Healthy Relationship With Your Boss” boils things down from 14 excellent tips to three. The first one: “Don’t let your boss’ moods bug you.” Everyone has good days and bad days, and it’s helpful to remember that managers are typically under a lot of stress. If they seem super cranky, just focus on doing good work and don’t take it personally.
Tip No. 2 is to “stay loyal” and show your boss that you’re someone who can be trusted through thick and thin. As Lauren Berger writes in a post for Fast Company, loyalty sometimes means going above and beyond and doing things like telling your boss when others are talking smack about them.
The final tip in the Jobs & Hire list is to “focus on your boss’ best abilities.” The person you work for is just a person, not a superhero. They’ll do some things well and other things poorly, and rather than dwell on the negative aspects of their managerial techniques, you should accentuate the positive and give them the occasional pat on the back.
“Make your boss feel valued,” Susan M. Heathfield writes in a terrific About Money post on a similar topic. “Isn’t this what you want from him for you?”