As things go, one of the more difficult things to do is to confront or push back on the boss. A lot of people won’t do it because they fear it would cause them to get fired or minimally get on the bad side of the Boss.
While it’s an understandable concern, its also unfounded. Your brain is making up false assumptions appearing as real (F.E.A.R.). Unless you know without a doubt that your boss is too sensitive for well-executed confrontation, you need to add this to your toolkit.
Let’s first look at reasons why Standing Up to the Boss, can be a good skill:
I am in the business of encouraging librarians to apply for library management jobs. When I come across smart, awesome, politically progressive librarians (which happens with delightful frequency), I try to convince them to consider management. This is not because I think management is the only path forward for these wonderful humans, but because I want more smart, awesome, and politically progressive folks at those tables. I want them there because libraries need to be changing in big, fundamental ways, and right now, as things stand, that’s where the power to push for those changes resides. Often, the librarian (aka my target) will ask me what I think it takes to be a good library manager and my answer, without fail, is “be a decent human being.” Now, as true as that may be, I appreciate that it is not very specific. What follows is an attempt to expand the list, in no particular order:
Be a decent human being (still #1).
Be the kind of boss that tells employees about their rights and then helps them claim and exercise those rights.
Be absolutely committed to transparency. Do not assume that you know what others need/don’t need to know (of course, be mindful of all the legal and ethical stuff).
Have a vision. Care very, very passionately about something and make sure everyone knows what that is.
Make absolutely sure that people who work for you have the resources to do their work. If resources are scarce, then change their work. Do less with less and more with more. Read more…
Once again, Google has topped Fortune magazine’s list of the “100 Best Companies to Work For.” This marks Google’s second year in a row at the top of the list, and their sixth victory overall.
Most people assume that Google tops the list because of their great benefits and all of the fun and perks that they pack into the Googleplex. But that’s just part of the equation.
Google knows that people don’t leave companies; they leave bosses. But unlike most companies, which wait around hoping for the right bosses to come along, Google builds each Googler the boss of their dreams.
Their people analytics team starts by researching the qualities that make managers great at Google. They’re the managers everyone wants to work for. Next, Google built a training program that teaches every manager how to embrace these qualities. Once managers complete the program, Google measures their behavior to ensure that they’re making improvements and morphing into managers that Googlers want to work for……
1. Great bosses are passionate. Few things are more demotivating than a boss who is bored with his or her life and job. If the boss doesn’t care, why should anybody else? Unforgettable bosses are passionate about what they do. They believe in what they’re trying to accomplish, and they have fun doing it. This makes everyone else want to join the ride.
2. They stand in front of the bus. Some bosses will throw their people under the bus without a second thought; great bosses pull their people from the bus’s path before they’re in danger. They coach, and they move obstacles out of the way, even if their people put those obstacles there in the first place. Sometimes, they clean up messes their people never even knew they made. And if they can’t stop the bus, they’ll jump out in front of it and take the hit themselves.
3. They play chess, not checkers. Think about the difference. In checkers, all the pieces are basically the same. That’s a poor model for leadership because nobody wants to feel like a faceless cog in the proverbial wheel. In chess, on the other hand, each piece has a unique role, unique abilities, and unique limitations. Unforgettable bosses are like great chess masters. They recognize what’s unique about each member of their team. They know their strengths, weaknesses, likes, and dislikes, and they use these insights to draw the very best from each individual.
What makes a great leader? Knowledge, smarts and vision, to be sure. To that, Daniel Goleman, author of “Leadership: The Power of Emotional Intelligence,” would add the ability to identify and monitor emotions — your own and others’ — and to manage relationships. Qualities associated with such “emotional intelligence” distinguish the best leaders in the corporate world, according to Mr. Goleman, a former New York Times science reporter, a psychologist and co-director of a consortium at Rutgers University to foster research on the role emotional intelligence plays in excellence. He shares his short list of the competencies.
Realistic self-confidence: You understand your own strengths and limitations; you operate from competence and know when to rely on someone else on the team.
Emotional insight: You understand your feelings. Being aware of what makes you angry, for instance, can help you manage that anger.
Emotional balance: You keep any distressful feelings in check — instead of blowing up at people, you let them know what’s wrong and what the solution is.
Self-motivation: You keep moving toward distant goals despite setbacks.