~ Colin Powell ~
Increase your personal development and career potential as you master these areas of communication with your boss. Great communication demonstrates growth and maturity. Poor communication sabotages your advancement. Eliminate these words and the values they illustrate and see your influence and recognition rise.
1. “It was nothing.” “No big deal.” When you can’t accept a compliment, you show a lack of confidence in yourself. After all, if you don’t think it’s a good job, why should anyone else? When your boss compliments you, don’t denigrate yourself. He is praising your skills and accomplishments. Own them. Sometimes people down-play their achievements due to a false sense of modesty. If you want to move your career forward, accept these compliments with graciousness. Say “Thank you.” Smile.
2. “Well, I emailed you about that a week ago.” This statement tells your boss you think that once it’s off your desk, it’s no longer your responsibility. It also suggests criticism of her for not finding it and reading it. Taking personal responsibility for your career development means you follow up. If you need feedback, send a gentle reminder. Remember, email is not the only form of communication. Pick up the phone and call… or walk down the hall and talk to the boss in person. It takes more effort, but this stretch shows you take responsibility.
3. Sigh. You might deny it, but both you and your boss know that sighs can say 50 different things… most of them not good. It might mean frustration, a feeling of over work, disgust that you’re forced to work with someone, do something, be somewhere you don’t like. Because you’re focused on improving yourself, watch how many times you sigh and ask yourself what caused them. If necessary, use positive communication to express your thoughts.
4. “Not my problem.” People looking to improve their careers can’t be perceived as lazy or uncaring. In reality, if it’s your boss’s problem, it becomes your problem. Your job description includes a range of flexibility and your willingness to go the extra mile will go a long way in impressing the boss.
5. “That’s not the way we did it last time.” Traditions and ruts may indicate to your superiors that you’re not ready to take on different or innovative tasks. In this changing economy, companies seek new ways to improve the bottom line. They look for employees willing to come on board with that.
6. “I just bought a Ferrari.” Your boss is not all that concerned with your personal life. Nor is he likely to be impressed if you have something bigger and better than he does. Keep personal things out of the office. When conversations focus on business tasks, you’re more likely to be perceived as advancement material.
7. “Is this the best they could do?” Whether it’s the new copy machine or the holiday bonus, criticizing the company’s policy or decisions will not make a good impression. You might be viewed as feeling entitled. If you can’t influence a decision or solve a problem, save your breath and focus on what will help you add value to the company…and your career.
Good communications require personal development and increasing maturity. Think before you speak. Make sure what you say reflects your best values and you will increase your chances to grow your career to greater heights.
Joel Garfinkle helps up and coming leaders understand specific steps to increase their personal development and advance their career potential. . Contact Joel now to learn how he can move your career forward. Or check out his newest book Getting Ahead.
Talkback: What phrases have you heard that are career killers? Have you seen the results of bad communication, or do you have an example of masterful communication?
Image courtesy of [image creator name] / FreeDigitalPhotos.net
A chief is a man who assumes responsibility. He says, “I was beaten;” he does not say, “My men were beaten.”
~ Antoine de Saint-Exupery ~
During my business leadership training seminars, I teach strategies that can help clients advance their careers. To learn all of these strategies, you’ll have to attend one of my seminars, but here are a few things you can start working on now.
- Develop Your Financial Vocabulary
In business, nothing matters more than the bottom line. Learn as much as you can about costs, profit margins, and accounting so that you will be able to make a case for proposed projects based on projected profits and cost savings.
- Build Relationships with People
Money might be the bottom line, but you won’t advance far in your career by trampling over everyone in your way—at least not for long. Work to develop good relationships at work. You never know when the receptionist you always took for granted might turn out to be the key to getting you an important meeting.
- Take on Extra Responsibilities
Take the initiative to find ways to do more than what is required in your current position. It may not be the perfect job for you, but give it everything you’ve got and your boss will take your hard work into consideration when it comes time for a raise or promotion.
Look for opportunities to stand out from the crowd at work, and take advantage of any opportunities you have to improve your knowledge and skills. If you can, attend business leadership training to learn the skills you need to advance quickly in your career.
Do you want to learn more strategies to help you advance your career? Download a free sample chapter of Getting Ahead today!