TAP In with Tristan : What is “Managing Up”?

Tristan talks about managing up. You’ve probably heard the phrase “managing up” before, but what does it mean? Managing down is all about being a good boss to your team, but managing up is all about being a good direct report to your boss. It all boils down to two major factors – listen to the tip to learn what they are!

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TRANSCRIPT

Tristan: What’s going on, Living Corporate? It’s Tristan, and I want to thank you for tapping back in with me as I provide some tips and advice for professionals. Today, let’s talk about managing up.

You’ve probably heard the phrase “managing up” before, but what does it mean? Managing down is all about being a good boss to your team, but managing up is all about being a good direct report to your boss. It all boils down to two major factors. First, understanding what your boss wants to achieve. Second, understanding how your boss operates.

Understanding your boss can be difficult, especially if you are new to the company or your boss isn’t very open with their goals and objectives. You have to work to establish a two-way dialogue and read the cues they give you to get a clear sense of what they want to achieve. Once you’ve done that, you can find ways to add value and make their job easier, but remember, you have to understand what they value before you can add value.

Start by establishing one-on-one meetings with your boss to solicit feedback and ask questions to get to know your boss’ needs. Does your manager often feel the pressure of meeting quarterly goals? Are they trying to get promoted themselves? Try to figure out what currently matters the most to them; then, you can align your efforts to help them achieve their goals.

Be cautious about becoming overbearing and trying to micromanage your boss. You don’t want to work for micromanaging leaders, and they probably feel the same way, especially about their employees. So don’t insert yourself into every detail, project, or task your boss mentions. Be strategic in where you provide assistance, but once you commit to helping them, be sure to follow through on that commitment and deliver high-quality work.

Don’t be afraid to voice your opinion. Leaders tend to get used to people telling them exactly what they want to hear. Learn how to offer feedback and voice your perspective in a respectful and productive way so that your boss will appreciate it.

Lastly, remember to show appreciation for what they do. Leaders tend to be focused on recognizing their team, and often get very little recognition themselves. Showing them appreciation is also a form of support.

Remember managing up doesn’t mean sucking up. It is about being the most effective employee you can be, creating value for your boss and company.

This tip was brought to you by Tristan of Layfield Resume Consulting. Check us out on Instagram, Twitter, and Facebook @layfieldresume, or connect with me, Tristan Layfield, on LinkedIn.

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