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Photo: iStock.com/michaeljung

The
boss/employee relationship is perhaps the most important
in the workplace, so it makes sense to invest time and effort into
getting it right. The connection you share with your boss will never be
perfect, but there are steps you can take to continuously improve it.

Here are some Corporate Homie
tips that can help you take your relationship with your boss from good to great:

1.   Anticipate Your Boss’ Needs. Staying ahead of your
boss will show her that you’ve got initiative and superb problem solving skills
– and remind her that she made a great decision when she hired you to the team.
This does not mean you become a mind reader; rather, you are simply positioning
yourself be
a valuable employee who your boss can depend on.  

So how
can you know what your boss
needs are before they ask? Here are some examples: 

  • Before submitting that
    presentation, think about the types of questions your boss will ask about it and write out
    the answers.  
  • The
    day before a big meeting, help him prepare by create a checklist of important
    points and documents that will be needed. 

2.   Ask for Feedback. Waiting until performance
review time to ask how well (or not) you’re doing on the job isn’t a good practice. Listen, if you
want to be successful in your job you’ve got to know your status at all times. And to do that, you’ve
got to talk to your boss. And who better to show you areas you’ve mastered and
point out areas where you need improvement than your supervisor? 

3.   Get a Little
Personal
. We’re not talking about
making your boss your new BFF. But it’s okay to ask if they enjoyed their
weekend or if their fantasy football teams are doing well. Before anything else,
your boss is a person who has interests and abilities that are unrelated
to their job. Making an effort to acknowledge this from time to time is fine.

4.   Learn Your Boss’
Communication Style
. Does your boss prefer
face-to-face interactions? Or is he comfortable with phone calls or emails? A
combination of the three? Or does it depend on the topic? Knowing your boss’
communication style can help you work smarter and be more effective. 

5.   Avoid Surprising Your Boss. Keep your manager
informed about your productivity with both special projects and general job
duties. If you encounter a problem, speak up sooner rather than later and offer
how you think the matter can be resolved. 

Like
any relationship, it will take some trial and error to get things just right
between you and your boss. A focus on maintaining an open line of
communication, treating your boss like a person, and keeping them informed
about what you’re doing will go a long way to build trust between you. And,
like any relationship, trust is the most important thing. Hustle on, Homies!