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Know what you love & make a statement

This is something I need to re-look into.

What is my primary goal?

Some would suggest that the single most important word is not career, it’s love, and I agree with this. Your career could changed overnight but what you love is not so vulnerable that it can change overnight.

Therefore, my primary, overarching, life-defining career goal must center around what  love I love doing.

Billions of people exist on this Earth, and things aren’t what we wish they could be because we succumb to fear instead of doing what we love.

I really like the quote.

“I fear nothing but fear itself”

How can you take what you love and serve this love with your career?

  • Create a statement, a single sentence that encapsulates your overarching career goal. Make it specific.
  • Write the love-of your-life career goal sentence down and pin it to the wall where you’ll see it every day.
  • Make sure this sentence informs all your other objectives.
  • Make sure your primary career goal is the result of what you love to do.

Example:

“Be a successful nonfiction author: Write nonfiction content — books, poems, essays, blog posts — to help people realize the priceless importance of love and the imagination, and get your content published.”

And at the moment, I kind of lost. I need to re-think a few things and set my priorities in order. Better yet have them in written form and put it up on the wall at home as a reminder so that I wouldn’t be loss again.

I hope that you found what you love to do, and I hope you do it well.

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Common adjustments for staff experiencing mental ill health

Adjustments to the work schedule

  • Allow more breaks
  • Allow breaks to take place when needed, rather than a pre-determined schedule
  • Change their working day to start earlier or finish later
  • Allow them to use paid or unpaid leave for appointments related to their mental health
  • Offer a phased return to work
  • Allow part-time working on a temporary basis (or permanently if it is what the they want)

Adjustments to role and responsibilities

  • Review their workload and agree what duties they can do
  • Re-assign duties they may struggle with among the rest of the team
  • Discuss vacant positions in the organisation and temporarily transfer them to a different role they want to do.

Adjustments to working environment

  • Provide partitions, room dividers etc. to enhance soundproofing and visual barriers between work spaces
  • Offer a reserved parking space to make it easier for them to get to work
  • Offer homeworking for some of the week
  • Increase the size of their ‘personal work space’
  • Position them as far away as possible from noisy machinery
  • Provide a private space for them to use when they need privacy

Policy changes

  • Extend additional paid or unpaid leave during a hospitalization or other absence
  • Allow additional time for them to reach performance milestones
  • Allow them to make certain personal phone calls during the day

Ways to provide additional support and assistance

  • Assign a mentor or buddy to support and help them
  • Arrange a regular one-to-one with their manager to discuss and priorities tasks
  • Provide a personal computer to enable them to work at home when they do not feel able to attend the workplace
  • Offer additional training on the skills and duties their job requires
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What Paul Pogba can learn from Cristiano Ronaldo’s Manchester United years

Lessons that we can learn from Rio Ferdinand comment on what Paul Pogba can learn from CR7 Manchester United Years.

It has been two years since Paul Pogba returned to Manchester United from Juventus, and we’re still talking about whether he has – or ever will – live up to his billing at Old Trafford.

Pogba has operated in virtually every possible midfield role during two full seasons under Mourinho, but yet never looked truly comfortable nor capable of exerting his maximum influence consistenlty.

The 25-year-old still has his best years ahead of him – and Red Devils legend Rio Ferdinand believes it’s his manager’s responsibility to get the best out of him while he can.

“That’s down to Mourinho to work that out. And I think that’s been the problem so far, they’ve not been able to work out what’s best for Paul Pogba in the Man United team,” Ferdinand said, per ESPN FC.

“Should he be playing in a more deeper, reserved position? Should he be playing on the edge of all the attacks, assisting, providing chances, etc? Where is he best in this team?”

However, Ferdinand believed for Pogba to fulfil his ambitions, he must first focus on replicating something Cristiano Ronaldo did to accelerate his development at United.

“Listen, he’s got an ego, that’s not hard to see on social media, this boy’s got an ego, wants to be looked at and talked about as the best player. There’s a hunger and desire for that, with that comes a work ethic,” the 39-year-old said of Pogba.

“Cristiano came as what we called a show pony, all the stepovers, looking good for the fans.

“He left the best player in the world, who lived and died by the end product. Goals and assists.

“But that’s down to intelligence, [Ronaldo] worked it out, actually, ‘that’s good that the people love me for that, but what’s going to get me there, to the top of the mountain. I need to adjust my game.’ And he left as the best player in the world.

“So Paul Pogba can look at that as something to learn from there as well. What do I really need to do to make myself the best midfielder on this planet?”

Even though Pogba and Ronaldo are completely different players, Ferdinand argues the psychological aspect of football is the same regardless of position.

“I don’t think it’s in terms of players that you compare them, it’s the mentality side. And that’s where Cristiano Ronaldo beats down every player around. He’s an animal mentally. He’s just single-minded, fearless, and obsessed. Crazy combination.”

So, the lesson here is to have the end goal clearly in mind, and actually do something to get it. Simply wishes for it won’t get you anywhere.

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The psychology of your future self

This question is especially relevant now: Does thinking that we won’t change prevent us from directing our own change? As Professor Gilbert says: “human beings are works in progress that mistakenly think they’re finished.”
Eduardo Briceño, Co-Founder and CEO, San Jose

At every stage of our lives we make decisions that will profoundly influence the lives of the people we’re going to become, and then when we become those people, we’re not always thrilled with the decisions we made. So young people pay good money to get tattoos removed that teenagers paid good money to get. Middle-aged people rushed to divorce people who young adults rushed to marry. Older adults work hard to lose what middle-aged adults worked hard to gain. On and on and on. The question is, as a psychologist, that fascinates me is, why do we make decisions that our future selves so often regret?

Now, I think one of the reasons — I’ll try to convince you today — is that we have a fundamental misconception about the power of time. Every one of you knows that the rate of change slows over the human lifespan, that your children seem to change by the minute but your parents seem to change by the year. But what is the name of this magical point in life where change suddenly goes from a gallop to a crawl? Is it teenage years? Is it middle age? Is it old age? The answer, it turns out, for most people, is now, wherever now happens to be. What I want to convince you today is that all of us are walking around with an illusion, an illusion that history, our personal history, has just come to an end, that we have just recently become the people that we were always meant to be and will be for the rest of our lives.

Let me give you some data to back up that claim. So here’s a study of change in people’s personal values over time. Here’s three values. Everybody here holds all of them, but you probably know that as you grow, as you age, the balance of these values shifts. So how does it do so? Well, we asked thousands of people. We asked half of them to predict for us how much their values would change in the next 10 years, and the others to tell us how much their values had changed in the last 10 years. And this enabled us to do a really interesting kind of analysis, because it allowed us to compare the predictions of people, say, 18 years old, to the reports of people who were 28, and to do that kind of analysis throughout the lifespan.

Here’s what we found. First of all, you are right, change does slow down as we age, but second, you’re wrong, because it doesn’t slow nearly as much as we think. At every age, from 18 to 68 in our data set, people vastly underestimated how much change they would experience over the next 10 years. We call this the “end of history” illusion. To give you an idea of the magnitude of this effect, you can connect these two lines, and what you see here is that 18-year-olds anticipate changing only as much as 50-year-olds actually do.

Now it’s not just values. It’s all sorts of other things. For example, personality. Many of you know that psychologists now claim that there are five fundamental dimensions of personality: neuroticism, openness to experience, agreeableness, extraversion, and conscientiousness. Again, we asked people how much they expected to change over the next 10 years, and also how much they had changed over the last 10 years, and what we found, well, you’re going to get used to seeing this diagram over and over, because once again the rate of change does slow as we age, but at every age, people underestimate how much their personalities will change in the next decade.

And it isn’t just ephemeral things like values and personality. You can ask people about their likes and dislikes, their basic preferences. For example, name your best friend, your favorite kind of vacation, what’s your favorite hobby, what’s your favorite kind of music. People can name these things. We ask half of them to tell us, “Do you think that that will change over the next 10 years?” and half of them to tell us, “Did that change over the last 10 years?” And what we find, well, you’ve seen it twice now, and here it is again: people predict that the friend they have now is the friend they’ll have in 10 years, the vacation they most enjoy now is the one they’ll enjoy in 10 years, and yet, people who are 10 years older all say, “Eh, you know, that’s really changed.”

Does any of this matter? Is this just a form of mis-prediction that doesn’t have consequences? No, it matters quite a bit, and I’ll give you an example of why. It bedevils our decision-making in important ways. Bring to mind right now for yourself your favorite musician today and your favorite musician 10 years ago. I put mine up on the screen to help you along. Now we asked people to predict for us, to tell us how much money they would pay right now to see their current favorite musician perform in concert 10 years from now, and on average, people said they would pay 129 dollars for that ticket. And yet, when we asked them how much they would pay to see the person who was their favorite 10 years ago perform today, they say only 80 dollars. Now, in a perfectly rational world, these should be the same number, but we overpay for the opportunity to indulge our current preferences because we overestimate their stability.

Why does this happen? We’re not entirely sure, but it probably has to do with the ease of remembering versus the difficulty of imagining. Most of us can remember who we were 10 years ago, but we find it hard to imagine who we’re going to be, and then we mistakenly think that because it’s hard to imagine, it’s not likely to happen. Sorry, when people say “I can’t imagine that,” they’re usually talking about their own lack of imagination, and not about the unlikelihood of the event that they’re describing.

The bottom line is, time is a powerful force. It transforms our preferences. It reshapes our values. It alters our personalities. We seem to appreciate this fact, but only in retrospect. Only when we look backwards do we realize how much change happens in a decade. It’s as if, for most of us, the present is a magic time. It’s a watershed on the timeline. It’s the moment at which we finally become ourselves. Human beings are works in progress that mistakenly think they’re finished. The person you are right now is as transient, as fleeting and as temporary as all the people you’ve ever been. The one constant in our life is change.

Thank you.

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5-Step (T.H.I.N.K) Approach to Resilience

Definition: One’s ability to adapt, recover and become stronger after going through difficult situations.

The 5-steps approach to develop resilience could easily be referred to T.H.I.N.K

T – Take Control

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Take control of managing changes in life. And also take responsibility for all the things that went wrong. By doing so, we should be able to acknowledge our mistakes and this will prompt us to change our ways. Stop putting the blame on everyone else.

How to develop ‘take control’ abilities

  1. Reflect
  2. Replace
  3. Re-look
  4. Focus
  5. Change

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H – Hopeful outlook

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Maintain the focus on positive outcomes rather than be overwhelmed by the problem.

How to maintain a ‘hopeful outlook’

  1. Positive outcome – expect positive outcome despite the difficulties
  2. Positive mindset – this will improve our quality of life
  3. positive self-image – this has very strong impact on our happiness and outlook.
  4. Spiritual practice – through prayer, meditation or by reading motivational books (whichever works for you)

I – Informed decision, timely action

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Make informed decisions and act timely in dealing with challenges

How to maintain a Informed decision, timely action

  1. Get the right information – about the situation weigh in on the possible outcomes before deciding
  2. Recognize and manage the blockers – that prevent decisive actions
  3. Make a decision that is a balance – between our emotions and rational thinking. (i.e. don’t make decision when you’re angry and promises when you’re happy)
  4. Act timely and appropriately – to move forward.

N – Nurture yourself and your network

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Improve your performance, achievements and resilience by having a positive view of yourself and making connections with others (networking).

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K – Know your goals, strive for success.

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Know what you want to achieve , focus on your efforts and celebrate your success.

  • By setting clearly defined goals, we will have a purpose for the things we do.
  • Celebrating goals achieved will boost our confidence. It helps us to recognize our own ability and competency.

So,

  1. Set SMART goals
  2. Break into smaller daily goals
  3. Work towards goals and celebrate achievements.
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I can be DUMB at times

When’s the last time strong emotion led you to behavior you later regretted?

For me the answer would be this afternoon, yes, the afternoon of 24th July 2018 . I consider myself somewhat brilliant (self-confidence is important nowadays) but again at time I can be remarkably dumb, especially with my laser sharp tongue. Something of which I honestly need to work hard on.

Therefore, I would spend a bit of my time tonight going back on my notes on a article entitled ‘Psychology’s Power Tools’.

In summary,

  • Research suggests that when we are confronted with unpleasant stimuli, we can temper our immediate feelings and behaviors by analyzing our thoughts objectively. Easier said than done, but nevertheless we can be better at by constant practice.
  • Cognitive reappraisal can help people endure unpleasant events, especially when negative feelings emerge from distorted thought patterns.
  • Cognitive behavioral therapy aims to make us more aware of our thoughts, giving us the tools to challenge the thoughts that aren’t serving us well.
  • In a “thought record,” patients document situations that arise and their thoughts and feelings about the situations. They then notice their resulting behaviors. Maybe I should try to record this too.
  • The thought record continues to provide evidence for painful thoughts; evidence against painful thoughts; and a new, more rational response to the situation.

Cognitive-behavioral therapy (CBT) is a psycho-social intervention that is the most widely used evidence-based practice aimed at improving mental health. CBT uses a number of tools to re-frame any situation in more technical, objective ways to reduce negative emotions and encourage positive behavior. Cognitive reappraisal is a core tool used in CBT, which focuses on relatively recent events that occur in a person’s life, their thoughts about those events, and their resulting feelings and behavior. If a person is in a near constant state of emotional distress, it’s likely that the bulk of their thoughts are inaccurate and dysfunctional. People are often unaware of dysfunctional thoughts, which may be deeply rooted and automatic, and since the thoughts most of the time are automatic and your reaction to such thoughts will be automatic too. Many people have distorted core beliefs about themselves which if left unchallenged can lead to poor decision making and major suffering. CBT helps us modify core beliefs and gain awareness of the inaccurate thoughts that arise on a daily basis.

“Asking people to view upsetting material from a more detached perspective does indeed alter the nature of the emotional experience.”

“Cognitive behavioral therapists … help people come to view the hurdles of life less like perilous threats that will slowly eat them alive and more like challenges to be managed and overcome.”

A “thought record” is a CBT technique that helps patients notice and challenge their day-to-day thoughts. Each entry includes a description of a situation that led to intense emotion. This could be anything for example, an upsetting phone call with a spouse or an uncomfortable interaction with co-workers. A person records his or her immediate thoughts, including specific details about what he or she imagined other people were thinking, their motives and possible future consequences. Next, records his or her feelings of worry, frustration or physical distress. The record also includes a description of the behaviors that followed those feelings usually negative behaviors that are hurting chances of happiness, like lashing out at others. The participant then adds the evidence supporting the painful thoughts, listing the reasons why they generated reactionary beliefs. The participant then challenges those thoughts by listing evidence against the painful thoughtsChallenging painful thoughts can lead to a new, more rational response to the situation and new, less painful or intense feelings. Keeping such a record reminds people to slow down and recognize and revise the spontaneous thoughts that might be doing them harm. It also helps them cultivate cognitive flexibility. People with cognitive flexibility acknowledge that there are many possibilities for what is happening in the present and what could happen in the future.

In general, the thought record seems to be an interesting idea which I look forward to try.

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How to prepare for a meeting

This articles discuss on how one shall prepare for a meeting especially if you are the organizer.

In order to prepare for a meeting, follow these six steps:

  1. Determine the purpose or objective of your meeting
  2. Determine if the meeting is actually necessary or not
  3. Create the agenda of the meeting
  4. Create / determine the attendee list of the meeting
  5. Identify the tools needed
  6. Make the final preparation

Determine your purpose

The purpose for a meeting drives all other key steps in preparing for a meeting, including what you put on the agenda, whom you invite, and when and where you hold the meeting.

Meetings have several basic purposes:

  • Solve a problem. A challenge is defined, such as unexpectedly rapid expansion of the business or declining product quality. Participants suggest ways to address the challenge. To get the most value from such a meeting, participants must be able to understand the problem. And they need enough energy and the right expertise to solve it.
  • Make a decision. The group selects a solution to implement. With this kind of meeting, participants need to agree on how decisions will be made.
  • Provide updates. Participants might report and give feedback on something, such as the status of an important project.
  • Brainstorm ideas. Participants try to generate as many ideas as possible, such as ideas for a new product, service, business process, or business model.
  • Rally the troops. The leader makes a presentation and tries to inspire participants to take a particular action.

A meeting can have more than one purpose. For example, if you hold a weekly staff meeting to update your team on the status of their work projects, you might also use the meeting to solve problems facing your group.

Do you need a meeting?

If you’re like most managers, you spend a bigger chunk of your workday in meetings than you’d like. Meetings interrupt your workflow and eat up hours you could be spending more productively.

While there’s often no way around gathering people in a room or on the phone to discuss an issue, it’s rare that managers stop to consider whether a meeting really needs to happen.

To determine if you need a meeting, consider your purpose. Also consider other criteria such as whether you need input from a group and whether the subject of the possible meeting is truly worth everyone’s time.

When to meet

In general, call a meeting when you:

  • Need a group to take part in making a decision, solving a problem, providing updates, or brainstorming ideas
  • Want to provide updates to a group—project status, a success, a concern
  • Face a problem that needs input from members of different groups
  • Discover that your team members feel a strong need to meet

When not to meet

It’s better not to hold a meeting if:

  • The subject is a personnel issue that’s better handled one-on-one, such as an employee’s poor performance
  • You don’t have time to prepare
  • Your group members are upset over a conflict or other problem and need time apart before being ready and able to address the situation (cool-down period)
  • Another method of communicating—email, phone, text message—would work as well or better
  • The subject isn’t worth everyone’s time

Create an agenda

If you’ve decided you need to hold a meeting, create an agenda: determine agenda items, the length of the meeting, sequence the discussion appropriately, and specify logistics.

Agenda items

To determine your agenda items, consider the meeting’s purpose, then the items that need to be discussed in order to achieve the meetings’ goals. Decide how much time you will grant to each item.

Include only as many agenda items as the group can realistically handle in the time allotted for the meeting.

Meeting length

Allotted time for the entire meeting depends on its purpose and its agenda items. Most business meetings are 30 minutes to two hours long. Although I’ve been in meeting which take 2 full days, and honestly, the meeting was highly unproductive and in general a waste of my time.

Usually, shorter meetings are more useful than longer ones because people have limited attention spans. Studies show that people have attention spans of no longer than about 30-40 minutes. If a meeting goes longer than that, participants may start squirming with impatience. When you’re deciding how much time to allot for a meeting, keep this in mind.

Sequence agenda items

Sequence your agenda items to create an optimal flow to the meeting.

  • Look for issues that build on each other.
  • Start with a few easy issues. Then work up to the most complex or controversial ones. But take care not to run out of time for the most important discussion items.
  • Separate information-sharing issues from problem-solving, decision-making, or brainstorming ones.
  • During long meetings, such as off-sites, address the most difficult issues at a time when participants are at their most focused. Attendees probably won’t be at their best just before or just after lunch, for example.
  • Break complex issues down into manageable parts.

Logistics

In your meeting agenda, indicate logistics such as:

  • Date, time, place, and length of the meeting
  • Name of the person calling the meeting, names and roles of participants, or name of the group that’s meeting
  • Anything unusual about the meeting format, such as the fact that the meeting will be held online or at an offsite location
  • Any background materials participants will need to review or prepare before taking part in the meeting

In selecting a setting for your meeting, book as small a room as everyone can comfortably fit in. This fosters a more cohesive group experience and encourages everyone to participate.

Also choose a room size and seating arrangement that will best help you reach your objectives. For example, if you want to encourage the free exchange of information and opinions, use an informal setting and seating arrangement, arrange tables so people can see each other, and use round tables to deemphasize hierarchy.

Some careful thought can help you schedule your meeting so that people arrive on time and have the energy to focus on your agenda.

  • Schedule it when most participants aren’t in back-to-back meetings.
  • Avoid meeting first thing in the morning, when people are rushing to get to work; and the end of the day, when people are tired.
  • Avoid scheduling a meeting right before vacations, when people are rushing to finish their to-do lists, not yours.
  • Provide snacks to keep everyone’s energy levels up if you need to schedule a just- before-lunch or end-of-day meeting.
  • Try to limit the meeting time to no more than one hour. If there’s really that much to cover, break the information into several smaller meetings.

Decide who to invite

The purpose of your meeting helps you determine whom you invite. Identify individuals who need to take part in the meeting. Select the right number of invitees. And clarify what roles each person will play during the meeting.

Who

Invite people to your meeting who:

  • Are the key decision makers for the issues involved
  • Can give relevant input
  • Have a commitment to, a stake in, or a role in the issue
  • Need to know the information that will be reported in the meeting in order to do their jobs
  • Will have to implement any decisions made during the meeting

To make sure key players attend, invite them personally and make sure the meeting fits into their schedules. Remind them of how they and others will benefit if they attend the meeting. Also, notify them if they will play a specific role.

How many

To determine how many people you should invite to a meeting, consider using the “8-18-1800” rule:

  • If you have to solve a problem or make a decision, invite no more than eight people. If you have more than eight people, you may receive so much conflicting input that it’s difficult to deal with the problem or make the decision at hand.
  • If you want to brainstorm, then you can go as high as 18 people.
  • If the purpose of the meeting is to rally the troops, go for 1,800 or more.
  • If the purpose of the meeting is for you to provide updates, invite however many people need to receive the updates. If everyone attending the meeting will be providing updates, limit the number of participants to no more than 18.

Roles

In selecting people to invite to the meeting, think about the roles and responsibilities that will need to be covered. One individual may fill several roles in a meeting.

Your roles

As a meeting leader, you might fill numerous roles during a meeting to address challenges that can arise.

Identify communication tools and technologies

Identify the kinds of tools you’ll need in the meeting such as phones, whiteboards, computers, flip charts, and markers.

Also consider the need for communication technologies, such as videoconferencing, teleconferencing with Internet support, and Web conferencing. The best meetings are face-to-face, especially when highly contentious matters are at stake or when a topic is emotional or sensitive. But with so many people working remotely, face-to-face isn’t always possible. In fact, more and more meetings today are conducted not around a conference table but through communication technologies:

  1. Video-conferencing. Videoconferencing enables colleagues who work in diverse locations to meet without leaving their offices. However, it can be complicated and typically requires the help of people with technical skills. For basic video, each conference participant needs the appropriate computer, camera, audio equipment, software, and internet connection.
  2. Tele-conferencing with Internet support. When you need to tie remote participants together and exchange visuals or data in real time, a teleconference with internet support can be an alternative to videoconferencing. If you have lots of data to exchange, ensure that all parties have high-speed internet connections. Otherwise, delays will keep some participants behind. Test the connections beforehand. Offer a quick tutorial to everyone at the beginning of the call if the software or website is unfamiliar to some.
  3. Web conferencing. Web conferencing can cover a wide range of possibilities, from simple slide sharing on a website to full streaming video. In general, the more bandwidth required and the more complicated the transmission that’s being attempted, the more likely things may not work perfectly. Test the technology beforehand, and opt for the simplest possible connection.

Make final preparations

Before the meeting, make final preparations:

  • Collect relevant documents and data.
  • Distribute relevant information beforehand, especially if doing so will help shorten the meeting.
  • Circulate the agenda you’ve created.
  • Talk with stakeholders about their opinions of and objectives for the meeting.
  • Encourage stakeholders to complete any pre-work needed for the meeting, such as reading documents or developing suggestions.
  • For people who have an interest in the meeting’s outcome but who won’t be there, send them the agenda and let them know that you’ll be holding the meeting.

As a final check to ensure that you’ve prepared adequately, ask yourself:

  • Am I clear about the meeting’s purpose?
  • Do we really need this meeting?
  • Have I covered all required information in the agenda?
  • Do I know how decisions will be made during the meeting?

If you answer “no” to any of these questions, take whatever actions are needed in order to answer “yes.”

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Giving your boss feedback

You see your boss in a variety of settings, client and team meetings, presentations, one-on-ones, negotiations. That gives you insight into his or her strengths and weaknesses and their impact on others. You may wonder if you should share your observations with your boss.

Providing feedback to your boss is tricky. But if you share your observations in the right way, you can help him or her and strengthen your partnership. In fact, when managers don’t know how others experience them, their performance can suffer. Your input can help your boss see him- or herself as others do. As a result, your manager can make valuable behavioral changes.

In order to give your boss constructive feedback, here is what you should do –

  • Wait to be invited. Even if you have a great relationship with your boss, resist any urge to launch into unsolicited feedback. Some bosses request feedback at the end of a formal review. Or, when you first start working together, your boss may share his or her development areas and ask you to keep an eye out for certain behaviors he or she is working on. If your boss doesn’t directly request feedback, ask if he or she would like it. Do this in the context of a new project or client.
  • Don’t offer feedback if you’re uncertain how it will be received. If you’re not sure your boss wants feedback or if the subject in question is sensitive, it’s better not to speak up. Instead, look for opportunities to comment anonymously, such as through a 360-degree feedback process. Of course, if you think your boss’s behavior is putting the company or your unit in jeopardy in some way, follow the appropriate channels in your organization.
  • Share your observations. Focus your feedback on what you’re actually seeing or hearing, not what you would do in your boss’s place. Open with something positive. Then offer constructive comments and ideas for improvement.
  • Re-frame your feedback if your boss gets upset. No matter how thoughtfully you’ve prepared and delivered your feedback, your boss may still get upset or defensive. If that happens, re-frame your feedback in terms of what your boss cares about most. Point out how specific behaviors may be making it hard for your boss to achieve his or her goals. Then gauge your boss’s reaction to determine how he or she prefers to receive feedback and what topics your boss does or doesn’t want to discuss.
  • Time it right. Make sure that you give the feedback at the right timing. At times, the effectiveness of a message is not in the content but rather on the timing of the message.
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How to establish credibility

It’s a note worth taking a look at.

Credibility is the cornerstone of persuasion and negotiation. If you don’t have it, your boss may not commit time or resources to ideas you’re proposing.

Credibility can be understood like this:

Trust + Expertise = Credibility

The more trust you earn from your boss and the more expertise you accumulate, the more credible you and your ideas will become to your boss.

To earn your boss’s trust:

  • Be sincere. Demonstrate your conviction that your idea is worth your boss’s time and attention. A supervisor who sees you as sincere and committed will be more likely to trust you.
  • Follow through. Follow through on promises and commitments you’ve made to your boss. By consistently fulfilling the responsibilities you’ve taken on, you also foster your reputation for being trustworthy.
  • Welcome suggestions. Listen to your boss’s concerns. You’ll demonstrate openness to his or her perspectives.
  • Put your boss’s best interests first. When you show that you have your supervisor’s interests in mind, he or she will trust you and your ideas more.
  • Own up to your flaws. When you own up to your flaws, your boss will see you as a truthful and therefore trustworthy person. That’s because most people try to conceal their faults.
  • Open-minded attitude. Be open to constructive feedback as you go along with your daily work and show effort in addressing your weakness and feedback that you received.

To demonstrate your expertise to your boss:

  • Research your ideas. Find out everything you can about ideas you’re proposing. Talk with knowledgeable individuals. Read relevant sources. Collect pertinent data and information to support and contradict your ideas. That way, you’ll be well versed on your idea’s strengths and weaknesses.
  • Get firsthand experience. Participate in cross-functional teams. You’ll gain new insights into particular markets, products, or business processes. You can then draw from this knowledge and experience in presenting ideas to your boss.
  • Cite trusted sources. Support your proposals with knowledge gained from trusted sources within or outside your organization.
  • Prove it. Launch small pilot projects to demonstrate that your ideas deserve serious consideration.
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Your boss’s boss

Your boss advocates for you and supports your career development. But he likely still has to get the approval of his boss for your pay increases and developmental opportunities. To better understand your role in the organization and advance in your career, it can be helpful to establish your own relationship with your boss’s boss.

Here is some tips on how to get to know your boss’s boss:

  • Interact. Greet your boss’s boss when you see him/her. But make sure to be polite and appropriate, don’t seem to be pushy.
  • Reach out. Communicate with your boss’s boss when opportunities arise; for example, send a congratulatory email if he/she gets a promotion or award. Make the email personal, not a gimmick to show off to your fellow colleague.
  • Ask for advice. Get your boss’s okay to email his boss (copying your manager on the message) to ask for advice. For instance, maybe you’d like suggestions on courses you’re thinking of taking or professional organizations you’re considering joining. Make your own boss look good in these emails by writing something like, “Michael thought you’d have some good ideas about this.” For example, ask for honest feedback.
  • Extend invitations. If you’re giving a presentation or your boss is leading an important meeting, ask your boss if it’s okay to invite his boss.
  • Pass along praise. If you receive praise from a customer or other key stakeholder, send it along to your boss. Your manager will likely pass it along to his boss, since your success makes your boss look good too. This is what I called ‘shared success’.
  • Volunteer for a cross-functional team. Leading or taking part in a cross-functional effort helps you contribute to the larger organization—and that makes you more visible to your boss’s boss.
  • Fix a problem. Find a way to make an improvement that furthers your organization’s goals or supports a core value. Share the results with your boss and his boss.