We’ve spent a couple of weeks now thinking about how to give and receive feedback. There are a few things you can do to improve both and this week, we look at 10 simple ways to build effective working relationships with your manager, or indeed any stakeholder you are working closely with. The essence is, of course, achieving clarity of role and purpose, with a view to keeping a keen eye on that all important “Habit 5 – Seek first to understand then to be understood.”
“So what are the 10 Simple Questions That Will Win Over Your Manager/Key Stakeholder?”
- Ask what he thinks you can do to be more effective.
- Ask what her top three priorities or goals are.
- Ask what you can do to make him more effective.
- Ask what you can do to make the team more effective.
- Ask if he’s interested in knowing what will make your job easier.
- Ask what her take is on the organisation’s top priorities and goals.
- Ask what he thinks you should do differently or improve upon to be more effective.
- Ask if she’d like to meet periodically, one-on-one, and if so, how frequently and what format would she like the meeting to take. Then set it up.
- Ask what his philosophy is on your shared functional responsibility, whatever that is, i.e. marketing, HR, IT, engineering, finance.
And, if the meeting’s open-form and you feel it’s appropriate, ask about his/her background. Most people like to talk about themselves and how they got there, as long as they don’t feel like they’re being grilled, pumped for information, or played in some way.
So get practicing these basics of building a great relationship – and let me know how it goes.