You’ve got a hunch that you’re on the outs with your boss—it could be because of that deadline you missed, or simply because you dared to speak to him before he finished his morning coffee. Either way, things are tense, and it could spell trouble for your career. Use these pro tips to get back into his or her good graces.
- Schedule A Time To Meet: The best way to work through your issues with your boss is to talk things over face-to-face. But don’t spring this meeting on him, because he may take this as an ambush. During the talk, approach things tactfully and deferentially. Talk openly, and say things like, ‘I feel like things aren’t working too well, and I want to make sure I’m meeting your needs’ or ‘I want to hear what you’d like from me’. It sounds simple, but this is an incredibly difficult conversation for some people to have. You may want to practice first.
- Match Their Communication Style: Your boss could be having a hard time working with you because he likes to skip the details and the chatter and get right to the point, but you’ve been filling his inbox with stories rather than quick one-liners. Or maybe the reverse is true. Instead of making assumptions about the person, act like a detective as you study their behaviour. Once you study their behaviour, match their communication style. Do they send just two-to-three sentences in an email? Or does each email include five paragraphs explaining each process? Do they like to have animated face-to-face meetings that involve conversations about family, or are a quick instant message chat more their style?
- Get Tips From A Trusted Co-worker: Surely your boss gets along with someone. Ask that person what she’s done to get along with the boss. Ask that person what she thinks you should be doing differently. Maybe the boss confided in her about you—or maybe she knows that your boss just doesn’t like people who bring tuna fish to work because it stinks up the break room. Really, it could be anything, and your co-worker could know the secret.
- Don’t Engage: In moments of real conflict with your boss, you need to make sure you don’t say something you’ll regret. The best way to do this? “Breathe”. Deep diaphragmatic breathing is one of the easiest and most effective ways to regain your composure. The last thing you want to do is to engage in the frenzy that your boss might be creating and to say or do something you later regret. Also remember that your boss is human, which makes him or her vulnerable to pressure and stress. While you may not like him, try to understand his perspective and the factors that might be driving his behaviours.
- Make A Change: Sorry to break it to you, but your boss might have a good reason for disliking you. Maybe you botched a project or are always late to work. If you are determined to change, then you should apologise for your behaviour. If you’re sincere, your boss will eventually come around. Generally, we human beings, once we’ve been given negative info, take a little while to see that you’re going to turn that around. Actions speak louder than words. If your actions are consistently positive, and your boss is a reasonable person, then you should be able to mend the relationship.
There you have it, people – Jumping on to the next available job just because you think your boss doesn’t like you, is sometimes not the best way out. Take out time to identify the things you are getting wrong, and resolve to correct every one of them, as long as you’ve got control over them.
Every boss needs PEACE OF MIND, and if you happen to be an obstacle to that need, you will never get around building a healthy relationship with him/her.