Tips on Developing a Better Relationship with Your Boss

Productive, respectful relationships between a boss and his or her employees is key to any company’s success. While the boss’ top priority is likely to have hardworking employees who fulfill his vision for the company, it’s a safe bet that he’d also like to have more than superficial relationships with the people he works with every day. After all, he probably spends more time with his staff than he does with anyone else.

To foster a great relationship with your manager, try to follow these.

1. Demonstrate Your Innovation and Initiative. If you work in an office where people are constantly pitching ideas for new products, services, projects, or process improvements, don’t be afraid to raise your hand and volunteer to take the initiative on something. If suggestions aren’t free flowing, keep a running list of your own ideas and offer them up at your monthly meetings with your boss.

Being innovative and taking initiative shows your manager that you’re invested in growing with the company, and that is bound to lead to a better relationship between the two of you.

2. Strive for Open Communication. The key is to remember that you were hired because you have a specific set of skills that the company values and, often, can offer a different perspective than your boss can. Feeling comfortable enough to disagree with your boss and have an open line of communication will build a strong relationship, one in which you know the best ideas will always rise to the top.

3. Remember Your Boss Is Human, too. Most leaders come to work with their professional game face on, armed with a to-do list a mile long. They spend their days focused on moving the company closer to its goals. However, even leaders appreciate when their employees see them as something more than the guy or gal who signs their paychecks

4. Be Yourself. You’ve probably heard some of your co-workers refer to their “work wives” or “work husbands.” It’s usually said in jest, but there’s some truth to the sentiment, many of us spend more time with our colleagues than we do with our actual families. And sometimes that commitment can cause friction at home or resentment at work. But unless your boss is famous psychic Theresa Caputo, he or she will have no idea that there’s an issue brewing in your personal life.

A division president at Spherion says, “In order to grow, learn and advance in their careers, employees need to be on the same page with their supervisors about their goals, objectives and career path.” And employees should start this dialogue so that they can open the lines of communication with their supervisor and engage them in this process.

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