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5 Tips To Create Career Work-Arounds Your Bosses Will Love

Posted September 3rd, 2012 by Carroll King Schuller

If you’re reading this, one reason might be that you aren’t sure about your job. You aren’t happy with it, yet something stops you from leaving. If you’re at that stage in your career, you can re-engage yourself through a variety of steps. One is to create a work-around, especially if part of the problem seems to be your boss.

Your workplace discontent could be centered around your supervisor if you find yourself saying: “He just doesn’t GET me.” “They’re too demanding.” “She keeps adding work to my plate.”

A work-around is a plan to circumvent a problem without actually solving it. You might think you could simply do your work without your boss; that is not quite the solution.

A work-around solved an issue I had with one of my managers.

My new boss was tough, demanding, unyielding and impatient. My first three days, she would browbeat me about the work I hadn’t done and the goals I had not accomplished. (According to her.) At 5 o’clock, as I was finishing the work, she stormed into my office with her unrelenting attitude. After three days I told myself, “Not gonna happen again.”

From that point, I finished everything early, including the paperwork. I took all the files to my boss 15 minutes before she would have come into my office looking for them. She was happy: She simply wanted to know that things were getting done, and seeing the reports eased her mind. The tirades ended! By paying attention to my boss, I established a work-around that suited us both. We worked well together for the next 14 months.

Here are a few tips to help you establish a work-around that will work for you and your supervisor.

  1. Pay attention to your boss’s routine. If the same thing seems to irritate him or her, change your behavior so you aren’t the one causing turmoil.
  2. Talk to a trusted co-worker. If an action has worked for someone else, it might just work for you, too.
  3. Adjust your attitude. You can’t change other people but you CAN change your reactions to them. You’ll be surprised at how this tiny adjustment can help your situation. (And no, it’s not easy.) Being the one with the smile and the great attitude, no matter what, creates good will for you among co-workers and management.
  4. Be the go-to person. Know what you’re good at and be sure others know, too.Then, when you see a need, you can say, “I can help with that.” And if you can’t help directly, be the person who connects the needy with a solution. Someone who connects like this establishes a good reputation, too.
  5. Look at it from your boss’s perspective. Why does she create unrealistic deadlines? Why does he micro-manage you? Solve these puzzles – and then challenge yourself to change at least one of your own behaviors so that you and your boss can work together more effectively.

As an experienced career coach, I love to partner with people who want to create the right career path for themselves. To ask questions or to make an appointment for a complimentary initial session, call 804.288.0099.