You might not want to admit it, but your chest swells up with pride every time you hear an encouraging ‘good work’ from your boss. Everyone wants to impress the big guy. Naturally, there are several contenders for the coveted title of ‘the boss’s pet’. Here’s what you can do to get ahead of the rest.
Passion is your strength
No amount of flattery and friendly golf matches can impress your boss as much as your sincerity and work ethic. “That can only be developed by a strong passion for what you do", says Sajid Mohamed, partner at law firm PDS & Associates. “You need to better your last performance and maintain professionalism,” he adds.
Some humility please?
It is always nice to feel good about the work you have done; but making it sound like your blowing your own horn – is not advisable. Be modest about how much you know, and accept it when you don’t. Vishal Anand, business head for freecharge.in, says, “Smart guys tend to have a lot of ego. Knowing when you don’t know it all, and acknowledging that goes a long way.”
The little things matter
Honesty. Punctuality. Proactiveness – You may think that these words belong to a self-help book and have little relevance in reality. But 23-year-old Rachel Thomas, a trainee at a law firm, thinks otherwise: “When you are just starting out, you have nothing but these qualities that vouch for your ability. When I was an intern, I would make sure I was at office way before any of my bosses, and I would volunteer for any work. It paid off in the end. They hired me.”
Never say never
Don’t be afraid to venture out of your comfort zone. Learning things that are not in your job description speaks volumes about you.
“I personally get annoyed by people who say ‘It’s not my job’,” claims Anand, who has worked with various tech and media companies. He adds, “In the best teams, individuals go out of their way to help each other and pick up tasks to help the team succeed.”
Be nice — always
Bosses come in all personality types. Some are gentle and encouraging, some are tough taskmasters and some, well, are just painful. Unfortunately, no matter how they are, you need to always be nice to them. “Be sociable, add a personal touch, make sure you remember the names of their spouses and children, and ask him/her occasionally how they are doing. Get them talking about the things they like, a book that they are reading, or a movie that was recently watched,” advices 26-year- old Priyanka Sinha, who is in a senior position at a marketing firm.
Does buttering-upreally help?
Your first instinct to impress your boss will obviously be to indulge in some unabashed flattery — the tried and tested formula of buttering. But it may not always be the right choice. “Some amounts of flattery can help you along the way, but buttering up the boss doesn’t work for too long. Everybody eventually rises to their level of incompetency. For the health of the team - how you perform at work and get along with your teammates plays a much larger role,” says Anand.