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Deborah Jane Willimott

Deborah Jane Willimott

June 25, 2015

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Get Your Boss’ Attention

And we mean in a good way (not by downing martinis at the work soiree and busting out your Britney impression). Julia Payne, director of Incisive Edge, a business growth consultancy firm for multimillion-dollar blue-chip companies, reveals what never fails to catch even the toughest manager’s eye.

Always remember you’re part of something big. “Offering solutions that take into account the effect on the company as a whole always stands out—as a boss, PR is usually left to you. In fact, receiving unprompted, practical improvements for the company at any time really highlights an employee.” However, don’t make it all about you. “Never ask, ‘How will x affect me and my job?’ In a crisis, it’s the people that put their team’s welfare first that get noticed.”

Put your words into action. “It’s a misconception that the person who ‘talks the talk’ will shine. Great bosses notice the people who follow up. Offer to take something on, provide a deadline then and there, and follow through.”

Speak up. In meetings, “raise relevant points that build on previous comments, rather than simply reiterate. It shows you’re paying attention and care about results.” But don’t interrupt your colleagues. “It’s discourteous, arrogant, and strikes you out as a team player. Good bosses can’t stand it.”

Treat your boss as a human. “We are living, breathing beings who have nonwork interests! If you’re in the elevator together, a nice comment about your handbag or children is lovely—and is remembered.”

Don’t kiss their ass. “One of our board members used to buy take-out coffees and pour them into a glass. Some employees started doing it in an attempt to align themselves with him. It was cringeable. It also makes you as a boss feel under constant scrutiny!”

But do toot your own horn. “Bosses hear lots of problems—so regularly updating us with your own and your team’s successes is appreciated.”

Leave the cliques where they belong—in high schools. “Beware: Superiors note who joins in with office politics and who expresses their own views. Cliques can very often limit your options in more ways than you know.”