MYOB – Managing Your Own Boss
On the face of it, that phrase could seem a little offensive. After all, some people might use the idea of managing your own boss as a means of not doing your work and not being caught.
The truth is that for employees to find not just acceptance, but genuine success (along with satisfaction, enthusiasm, energy, productivity, creativity) it will sometimes be necessary to actually work at getting the type of leadership you need.
Go back and reread that sentence once more.
The point of MYOB is understanding that if you want to excel in your work, you need the right type of leadership at just the right time. The concept may not be revolutionary, but it can certainly be liberating if you dig in to the practice of getting the type of leadership you need when you need it.
First, lets understand something: No one employee does every task equally well. Yes, there are those who appear to be “jack of all trades”, but the truth is that, regardless of our education or knowledge or longevity, there are some tasks at our work which we do better than others.
Different skill sets mean each employee will respond to different tasks with varying levels of knowledge and motivation.
Think about that new hire who has immense levels of enthusiasm for (seemingly) every task. They don’t yet know how to run that report, or make that sales call or call a vendor, but they are eager.
Think about that 10 year veteran who is given a new responsibility, but doesn’t yet have the skills to meet a high expectation about the new task.
Both employees may have transferable skills, but they don’t yet have specific experience in the specific task. They need clear direction, especially at first.
All too frequently, however, inexperienced managers or supervisors will tell these two examples what the need is, and then turn them loose on the task. Later, they’ll wonder why it is things didn’t turn out quite like it was hoped or expected.
Lets turn this scenario around a little.
Lets take a look at what it is to be that 10 year veteran or that new hire. What would it take to actually thrive in the new task, to really shine, and, thus, be given new roles and opportunities in the future?
First, it takes an understanding that getting the leadership you need is, ultimately, your responsibility.
No one outside of your skin can know what you genuinely know about the task you have been given. No one can know if you have a high skill level for a given task, or a low skill level for the task.
Only you know yourself.
So, what do you do, then, in order to succeed?
Realize that you may actually need to manage your boss to get the direction/training/skills development you need. You might actually have to express not doubt about yourself, but your need to improve.
Most managers worth their salt won’t look at someone who says “I need to improve in this area” and write them off. It demonstrates self awareness. It shows that there is desire to do what it takes to succeed.
What MYOB means in the context of this discussion, then, is learning to get the kind of leadership you need for the task you are on. One leadership style won’t do for all situations and all tasks, much less for all people.
From your perspective as an employee with a new task to perform, you will need to get the kind of leadership appropriate for the task.
Now that I’ve set the stage, stay tuned for tips on how to get the right leadership from your boss that you need to really succeed well.
That’s my thought. What do you think? Does the idea of MYOB sound strange to you?