Managing the Boss

Tell a lie about a co-worker? Never. But there are times your boss doesn’t need to know everything, says Nicole Williams, author of Girl on Top. Here are five things your boss doesn’t need to know about you.
Reduce the odds that a conversation will bog down when people take things too personally by avoiding statements that begin with “you.” … Learn how you can add more value at the office by conducting your own “listening tour.”… Stay current on technology by signing up for free e-newsletters. …
Whether you call your boss’s work style “creative” or “chaotic,” when your higher-up is full of ideas, it seems impossible to follow through on everything. You can help an idea person by putting structure into your conversations with him, says Alaina Love of Purpose Linked Consulting.
Though work mates care about you, they pay more attention to messages that show there’s something in it for them, says Susan Mason, a principal of Vital Visions Consultants. So, for example, if you want something from your boss—whether it’s approval on a new printer purchase or a more flexible schedule—figure out what benefit she will realize. Figure out “What’s In It For Me?” from her perspective.
When a secretary posted a question on our Admin Pro Forum recently, she heard plenty of advice from admins who have trouble getting supervisors to adhere to deadlines. Here’s a sampling of their “been-there-done-that” advice:
Catch a second wind by tackling a task on your “Mind Like Mush” list … Is your boss an ‘allergic-to-details’ type? Keep project files handy that contain details he or she is likely to need … Find travel deals by booking later … Spruce up your administrative “portfolio” by adding a dash of visual material.
How can you be assured of enough face time with your boss to ask questions, convey critical information and dazzle her with your smarts—without coming across as a time drain? The key, advises author and workplace columnist Anita Bruzzese, is to be aware of what your boss wants and when and how she wants it.

Boss presidential?

April 2, 2009 Categorized in: Managing the Boss

When provided descriptions of each presidential personality, here’s who American workers compared their bosses to. (Which best describes your boss?)
More than half of senior executives say they’re interrupted about once every 30 minutes, according to a Center for Creative Leadership survey. Here’s where assistants can play a vital role. Stave off interruptions by partnering with your boss, using these tactics.

Boss a perfectionist?

April 1, 2009 Categorized in: Managing the BossProblem Solving

The perfectionist boss can easily drive you crazy, spending time correcting others’ less-than-perfect work and agreeing to take on any and all projects. Some workaround tips for you:

Is your boss a cliffhanger?

April 1, 2009 Categorized in: Managing the BossOrganizing

The cliffhanger boss likes to wait until the last possible moment to deliver a finished project. He thrives under deadline pressure and will create that pressure if it isn’t there already. How can you work around that?
Your boss asked you to prepare a spreadsheet for a meeting the next day. It took a couple of hours and some shuffling of priorities, but you did it. When you arrive at the meeting, though, your boss handed you a spreadsheet that someone else created. Should you tell your boss how frustrated you are?
As Administrative Professionals Week (April 19-25) approached, we couldn’t help but wonder what crazy things bosses have asked admins to do. So we asked readers of our Admin Pro Forum to tell us about the most unusual or bizarre thing their boss ever asked them to do. For starters: "Open his sandwich every day to make sure no tomatoes were on it."