Culture August 3, 2016
You have been trying to get your boss’s attention for months now but nothing seems to be working. In meetings, you pitch ideas hoping to score her approval but, of course, she usually ends up getting pulled away and doesn’t have the chance to hear your idea. And when you walk by her in the halls, you say “Hello,” but her half smile reaffirms that she doesn’t even know your name.
There is no doubt that standing out to your boss is difficult enough as it is. With time constraints, social settings, and personal anxieties, impressing him or her can be that much more nerve-wracking. That’s why seizing the opportunity for one-on-one communication in a 45-second elevator ride is the perfect moment to be quick and memorable.
Don’t let the workplace culture get you down! Here are two easy steps to help you decide what to say and how to impress:
Impressing your boss in such a short time frame will definitely call for a little getting to know them ahead of time. Even if you don’t normally speak with her directly, get a feel for what type of woman she is. What sorts of things does she like? What are the things that bother her?
Telling your boss that you work long hours when she’s made a point that overtime is prohibited will not impress her, and making a comment about how you wish lunches were longer will probably not win her over.
Instead, if you noticed that your boss hates “too many” questions, then don’t ask her something just for the sake of asking something. Bring forward something beneficial and insightful. Understanding how your boss works will be the ultimate foundation for figuring out what to say in your 45 seconds of opportunity.
According to the job search engine Monster, one of the top 10 habits bosses love is “responsive listening.” Another top 10 characteristic is the ability to “collaborate,” meaning it’s important to work with your boss and not against him or her.
Therefore, not only do you have 45 seconds to show your boss you’re paying attention, but you also have to demonstrate that you can provide constructive solutions. You don’t want your boss to get the impression that you can only add fuel to the fire by saying their suggestions won’t work. Be thoughtful.
If your boss mentioned in a meeting that (s)he couldn’t figure how to transfer his/her meetings from Outlook to his/her Google calendar, then let him/her know about a great app that makes syncing the two so much easier. Showing that you can listen and provide a solution will really show your boss that you’re a valuable team member for the business.
In all, don’t overthink it. Be calm, composed, and productive. Don’t take this moment as an opportunity to bring up problems and concerns. You want to show that you can make their life and job easier. According to Monster’s article, 5 Things You’re Doing That Your Bosses Hate, lack of problem-solving skills is the common theme. Show that you are confident in yourself and in the work you do and your boss will take note!
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