Impress Your Boss

Edited by Jenni123, Charmed, Nate Pepperell, Anonymous and 6 others

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When you're trying to impress your boss, there are a few questions you should ask yourself. What kind of person is your boss? Where does he or she see potential? Why were you hired? How does your boss run the business? The word "boss" remains an overhead term for people filling a variety of positions, so there's no single job description that quite fits the term. Your boss might only supervise a few workers, run a department or be in charge of the whole company. Either way, your boss directs your work, reviews your performance and influences a large part of your work week. It would be a valuable career move to strive to impress your boss.

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You were hired in the first place because your boss saw potential in you. You don't need to only dwell on impressing your boss, but also show what you've got and keep building on it. Your work is an extension of your life, so by going the extra mile, developing your skills, building the right relationships with colleagues and delivering results, you'll not only impress your boss, you'll also improve your life and your happiness. Your boss will notice when you stand out from others because of all your hard work and the dedication you have shown. So be who you were hired to be.

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Learn About the Company

You might be surprised to find that many people don't really take the time to learn about their company's culture and mission outside of their own position. If you want to get noticed by your boss, it's time to take some initiative, and here's how to do it:

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    Use the Internet to your advantage.
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    Keep up with the company culture by researching your company's website. Utilize your company's social media pages on sites such as Facebook and Twitter to stay updated with the latest news.
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    Attend company meetings and events.
    Take the extra time to attend all company meetings, events and functions related to your position. Listen and take notes on important facts so you can apply what you learned while you're working. Company events also allow you to socialize with other employees, which helps to build better morale and teamwork.
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Take Initiative

While being a follower and simply doing what's asked of you might be enough to get by, it won't help you grow and develop within your company, and it certainly won't get you any special recognition. By taking initiative and showing that you have the drive to do more, you'll likely be awarded better opportunities.

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    Present new and innovative ideas.
    Don't be afraid to speak up in a positive manner and provide useful suggestions. If you think a new way of doing something might be more effective, write up your plan in a spreadsheet or PowerPoint and propose your idea. Use charts and graphs to show how it can benefit the company. Even the smallest suggestions count.
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    Volunteer for additional projects to broaden your scope.
    If you have no trouble meeting the deadlines of your current position, offer to assist on an additional project. The more you learn about each section of a company, the more valuable you become to your boss. If you have skills beyond your current job, you'll be in a better position to ask for a promotion down the road. Going the extra mile is an excellent way to garner recognition and show off how reliable you can be.
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Demonstrate Your Abilities

You were hired for a reason. You wouldn't be there if you didn't have the necessary skills to succeed at what you do. However, in a fast-paced world, technology and businesses are constantly changing, so you need to keep your skills sharp and up-to-date so you aren't passed up by newer, more qualified employees. Here are a few ways to do this:

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    Consistently meet deadlines.
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    If necessary, put in extra hours to complete all work assignments on time. If you find yourself having trouble meeting deadlines, you might be approaching projects in the wrong way. Break down each project into smaller, more reasonable tasks, then make a list either online or on paper. Create a goal for each task, and check off the list as you go. Set your own internal due date a few days early to give yourself plenty of time in case of unforeseen issues, which almost always occur. Most people will go to their boss and explain why something unforeseen happened, which prevented the deadline from being met. Instead, be the one who plans for the unforeseen. Do whatever it takes to always reach your goals on time, and avoid overcommitment. If you absolutely can't meet a goal in time, let your boss know what you've accomplished and negotiate a new deadline for the remainder of the project.
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    Find out what your boss expects from you and exceed those expectations.
    If you don't know exactly what your boss wants from you, find out his or her preferred method of communication, and keep your questions short and to the point. If you're expected to finish so many assignments per week, set your personal goals a little higher and complete extra assignments. Don't box yourself into your job description.
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Develop and Show Leadership

Leadership qualities are desirable in almost any position, even if you're an intern or a new employee. Having the ability to take charge of a situation and lead yourself or a team is one of the biggest keys to professional growth. Nurture this side of yourself and you'll reap the benefits.

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    Become an information source in your field.
    Attend employee-sponsored training programs, meetings and seminars in your field as much as possible to stay informed on the latest updates. For example, read trade journals or enroll in certification programs in your field to expand upon your current knowledge. If your company recently started using new software, look up tutorials and take part in quick courses to learn the ropes. If you're a writer that uses AP style, keep up with changes in the AP Style Handbook. With your boss's permission, issue a monthly memo or newsletter to other employees letting them know what's new in the field or company. Hold a working lunch to keep your coworkers up to speed. This is a sure-fire way to get promoted.
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    Develop your leadership skills.
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    The best leaders possess a variety of leadership qualities and use each one to their advantage when the situation calls for it. A good leader knows when to use authority and clear guidance to reach a goal, or if encouragement and participation from the team is better suited to the situation. They know when to motivate team members and boost morale, and when to lead by example. Find your default leadership style, and draw on what works well for you and gets results. Try out different styles if you feel you're not getting what you need, and take note of how each one worked. With a lot of practice, you'll learn how to guide a team to accomplish its goals and impress your boss in the process.
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Develop Your Professional Image

Being a good worker is an automatic job requirement, but being a professional, likeable and presentable person can really help you open up new doors within your company. Here's how to get people to notice you and get on your boss's good side:

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    Always be courteous and loyal to both your co-workers and boss.
    This should go without saying. Avoid spreading gossip or speaking poorly of any individual within the company. Show respect to everyone you interact with, every single day.
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    Take care of your health.
    If you aren't physically and mentally healthy, your production at work might suffer. Make sure you take the time to eat healthy, balanced meals full of fruits and veggies, whole grains and lean proteins. Follow any necessary dietary restrictions, avoid excessive amounts of junk food and stick to a regular exercise program. Relax and unwind as much as possible after work. Enjoy your favorite hobbies, listen to music, watch movies, spend time with your family or pets. These things are often overlooked, but healthy and happy employees are usually the most productive.
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    Keep up a professional appearance.
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    This is especially important if you work with the public
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    Always be clean and presentable. If your company has a dress code, always follow it. Keep your nails trimmed and your manicure fresh. Your hair should always be neat and clean. If not, wear it up. Men should keep their facial hair neatly groomed, as well. Avoid dousing yourself with too much perfume or cologne. Many women benefit from a touch of makeup, but that comes down to personal preference.
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    Emphasize the best parts of your personality.
    If you have good leadership qualities, offer to lead a team project. If you're an outspoken people-person, use that to increase sales. If you're a hard worker but you have a quiet or shy personality, make yourself visible, even if it's only connecting one-on-one with your coworkers and supervisor. Take public speaking courses to help build confidence and get you noticed.
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    Admit your mistakes and learn from them.
    Making excuses and shifting the blame to others only makes you look bad in the end. Own up to your mistakes and reflect on them. Consider every mistake a learning experience.
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Demonstrate Loyalty

Showing loyalty to your boss and the company as a whole shows that you value your workplace and truly want it to succeed. There are many ways you can do this.

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    Do things to make other team members look good behind the scenes.
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    Not only will your coworkers appreciate this, having a positive attitude about the people you work with makes you and the company look better. For example, if you're working on a team project, and you notice that one employee is better at presenting than another, encourage that person to lead the presentation. If another is better at working with data, encourage them to create the spreadsheets, etc. This showcases the best of everyone's abilities, and illustrates how valuable each employee can be. If your boss asks you about the project, give credit to those who achieved the best results. When promotion time comes around, you will be rewarded.
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    Make your boss look good to his/her boss.
    Everything you do reflects on your boss, from the tone of your emails to the way you present yourself when meeting new people. Maintain a professional image at all times, and never speak badly about your boss. He or she is ultimately judged by how well his or her employees perform. Exceed goals and suggest new ideas to increase sales or make things run more smoothly, such as finding new sales leads through ads or creating a project board that keeps track of goals and lets the team know when each stage is completed. Automated invoices or email responses can also save time for more valuable tasks. It reflects well on your boss when you surpass sales goals, find new clients or get the best reviews.
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    Contribute to your boss's goals.
    Use positive feedback to encourage your coworkers to support the boss's initiatives. Find ways to help your boss achieve his or her goals through your work, and you'll both be winners.
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    Do what you say you'll do.
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    Show your boss that you're reliable, dependable and willing to help out in a pinch. This helps develop a bond of trust that you'll both benefit from.
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Find and Improve Your Weaknesses

While it's true that no one is perfect, you should always strive to improve yourself. Find your weaknesses and turn them into strengths. This shows that you have determination and perseverance.

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    Identify your weak points.
    Find out where you're lacking. It could be related to your personality, such as shyness or awkwardness when you need to make a presentation or speak up in meetings, or it might be skill-related, like slow typing speeds when you need to enter data quickly and efficiently. Once you discover your weaknesses, take this as an opportunity to improve.
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    Improve your weaknesses.
    Do everything in your power to work on your weaknesses and master them. If you tend to get distracted easily while working, break tasks down into smaller, manageable pieces, taking frequent short breaks in between. If you feel like it's hard to speak up, practice with your family and friends until you feel more comfortable. If you're lacking quick typing skills, practice typing tests in your spare time. Every little thing you do can help. Improving your weaknesses shows that you're willing to do everything you can to reach your full potential, and this is the type of employee that gets noticed.
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Tips, Tricks & Warnings

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    Separate your work life and personal life as much as possible.
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    Everyday banter is fine. But avoid getting too personal and spreading rumors, since it can backfire and ruin your credibility if the relationship goes awry.
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    Keep your workspace clean and organized.
    Throw away clutter, use document organizers and trays to keep papers neatly stacked. Put pens, pencils and other supplies in a drawer or in a pencil holder.
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    Find out how to help your boss succeed.
    Most employees are only worried about their own position. Bring useful information about current office events that the boss may be unaware of, or offer to take over some tasks if you know that he or she is swamped with work.
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    Don't be a suck-up.
    While it's always a good idea to try to make your boss like you, it's possible to go too far, and most people don't like the office suck-up. Avoid excessive amounts of flattery and over-sharing. Observe your boss during interactions with others. Learn what he or she likes, and avoid making assumptions.
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    Stay away from office dating.
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    Sometimes when there is a misunderstanding about the intent of one's advances, you could find yourself embroiled in a sexual harassment charge when all you wanted was a date!
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    Claims of favoritism.
    Especially if the relationship is between a boss and a subordinate, others might perceive favoritism, complain about it and you and your lover could find yourselves out on the street.
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    Awkwardness when the relationship does not work out.
    There is a thin line between love and hate. When love turns to hate, it could be more than just awkward to be around your former significant other. This could lead to lower performance and morale which might effect your employment longevity with that company. Even if you stay, it could impact your chances for promotion.
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Article Info

Categories : Relationships

Recent edits by: Doug Collins, Eng, Jen M

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