Being a manager in a corporation is not easy. You likely face a litany of challenges and are expected to rise to the occasion with little help. You are expected to deliver your performance objectives with limited resources, work with colleagues you may not necessarily trust, or deal with lackluster direct reports. Do any of these problems sound familiar?
If challenges like these are not addressed promptly, you could miss your performance objectives and hurt your advancement opportunities. So, you have two choices: Do more of what you have been doing or elevate your game as a manager by learning how to deliver results through others.
In this and future articles, I will share tips to help you become a better corporate manager. I will build on the lessons learned during my 25 years as a manager for three large corporations (P&G, IBM, and Microsoft), as well as my seven years as an executive coach for over 200 professionals. If you missed the first article in this series, please click here.
Tip #2: Enlist your boss to help you deliver your performance objectives.
As a corporate employee, I quickly realized how important it was for my manager and the senior executives to see me as somebody who was adding value to the business and giving my best at work.
In one case, I had a review scheduled with an executive a few levels above mine, from whom I required approval to expand an important project I was working on.
My manager at that time helped me develop my presentation. He insisted on the importance of eliciting a “wow” from the big boss, meaning that at some point during the presentation, he should be pleasantly surprised to find that the work we were doing exceeded his expectations. He said this would reassure him that we were on the right path and that approval for the expansion would be granted. It worked. The presentation went well, there were (literally) a couple of “wows,” and I received approval for my expansion.
In another situation, I had a different manager give me excellent advice about how to develop a good relationship with his boss. He recommended that I remember to “feed the lion,” meaning that it’s important to provide frequent updates to our managers on the work we were doing. They want to be reassured that we are generating the kind of plans and results they expect from us.
I encourage you to consider using these lessons as well. Generating wows and feeding the lion will help you capture upper management’s support, get your proposals accepted, achieve your objectives, and generate good personal branding, all of which will be work in your favor when advancement opportunities arise.
Contact me if you need help developing the skills and capabilities to significantly increase your business results through your boss and, as a result, accelerate your career growth.
Percy M. Cannon
Helps you make the rest of your life…the best of your life