Is It Better to Be Respected or Liked as a Supervisor?

Up to now, my posts have been directed at working-level employees. But eventually, especially if you are career-oriented, you will want to move into management which brings its own unique challenges. So this is a new stream directed at a first-time supervisor or those who aspire to the position. It will alternate with the employee stream posts with which you are already familiar. Is It Better to Be Respected or Liked as a Supervisor? So, a promotion. Well done. You have taken over your old boss Albert’s job. You will now be supervising staff who, until you got this new job, were your colleagues. Honestly, this is a tough way to start in management. I think it’s actually easier to supervise people you don’t know in your first supervision job. But a promotion is a promotion and there is the whole thing about gift horses. Here’s a situation you might run into in the early days of your new role. Your first challenge as a supervisor Candice comes into your office. Before you were promoted, you and Candice worked on many projects together. Candice: Hey, nice office! So how does it feel being the big cheese? You: Please. I’m not…

Consequences of Taking a Stand

Consequences of Taking a Stand Sometimes, you must speak up to maintain self-worth. In previous posts, we’ve discussed how to do that. However, no matter how successfully you pilot through your initial conversation, there will be consequences which you need to prepare for and accept as part and parcel of deciding to speak out. Consequences you might face Depends on your boss and how open your company is to change. The following list is generally in order of severity. What consequences you have to undergo will depend on how big the problem that you raise and how much your boss and/or company wants to avoid dealing with it. This list is adapted from the one published in Creating the Innovation Culture: Leveraging Visionaries Dissenters and Other Useful Troublemakers in Your Organization, Chapter Five. Ignore. Silence—a powerful weapon. When you raise the issue, no one replies. The conversation continues as if you’d never spoken. Made invisible. Funny things start to happen. Somehow, your name gets left off distribution lists. Important and interesting work is re-assigned. Decisions are taken without your input. Forbid. If you continue to push your unpopular views, your boss will say: “Focus on assigned projects, not on the…

How to Take a Stand or Challenge Convention

How to Take a Stand or Challenge Convention Whether you take a stand on something is entirely up to you.  Only you can decide that. But how you challenge convention can lower or increase the chances of continuing to earn a pay check. Plan Don`t do a spur of the moment, blow your gasket thing. It`s too important. Take a moment to think through what to say. Be clear. Sometimes, moral outrage can be diffuse. What exactly is bothering you? Is it the problem or the cover-up? Can be both but get it clear in your mind. Limit the scope. `You always do that!` is not a way to create the right conditions. There may be various transgressions but either find an umbrella term (e.g. management style) and use the various issues as examples, or cite the most egregious item to focus on.   Plan the conversation. You can’t determine exactly how the conversation will go. But keep the key points in mind: A concise and clear statement of the concern Any hard facts you can use to support your contention The resolution (specifics, please) which would satisfy you The conversation to challenge the status quo As discussed previously, pick…

What is Taking a Stand?

What is Taking a Stand? In previous posts, I have discussed situations where taking a stand was an option. Whether it was trying to get a fair division of holidays (Intro), confronting a jerk boss (Power), refusing to maintain a lie (Lying), or trying to challenge groupthink (Groupthink), there can be times when you feel the need to speak up. Let’s do an example of what taking a stand might look like. What taking a stand looks like Amanda is your boss and you both work for an accounting firm. You are a Chartered Accountant as is she. Amanda comes into your office. Amanda: Ryan, I thought we discussed the Sanderson account. You: Yes, I know, but I just couldn’t find a way to not report the loss. Amanda: Oh, put it in a footnote, for god’s sake. You: I can’t do that! Amanda: Well do something. The client doesn’t want to highlight the loss. You: (a deep breath) Amanda, I know it’s important to please the client, but I just can’t do this. Amanda: Ryan, we’ve discussed your inflexibility before and I’ve had about all I can take. You: I’m sorry, Amanda, I’d like to accommodate the client, but…

Showing You’re Ready to Move Out of the Joe Job
Dark Side for Employees , Employee Stream / September 19, 2016

Showing You’re Ready to Move Out of the Joe Job In the last post, we discussed being in a joe job—that is, being underemployed where you are not able to use the full range of your skills and abilities. However, one of the best ways out is to have a reference from this job which sets you up for the one you really want. The descriptors you want your supervisor to use in a reference are: Enthusiastic Has initiative Bright Hard-working Responsible This table below demonstrates how each of these could play out in a work context. Demonstrating your promotability Trait NOT: You’re going for: Example Enthusiastic Gosh, everything is great. The people are so great. The products are outstanding. No wonder they sell so well. Adding value in your comment I think this product would be useful to younger people, too. They wouldn’t need it to lighten the load but might appreciate its convenience. Has initiative I know we’re not supposed to do it that way, but it’s stupid. My way is much better. Suggesting changes before implementing I notice we get backed up when there are a lot of customers. I could pack the purchases for everyone to…