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Hello Folks,

BLUF: IMHO, the best thing about Manager/Career Tools is the constant emphasis on actionable advice. Today, I had an experience of the opposite kind: an empty article on an important subject.

Has anybody seen this: http://blogs.hbr.org/cs/2012/11/when_your_manager_is_afraid_of.html ?

I began reading the piece with highest expectations to find useful advice: It has been a pattern in my career that I apparently intimidate my managers with my energetic drive, creative spirit and frequent inability to take 'no' for an answer (unless the verdict is explained and backed up by reasoning, of course).

Halfway through the article, I really liked how the story was told. I could absolutely relate to the character and her experiences. I was eager to finish reading.

In the end, I was completely disappointed. Complete lack of actionable advice.

That wouldn't have happened with Manager/Career Tools! Maybe 'My Manager Is Afraid Of Me' would be an interesting candidate for a future cast?

What do others think?

Best regards
Jochen

elihal's picture

BLUF: I'm having a similar challenge - how do I, a high D/I, get my high C boss to supervise, develop, and/or not be afraid of me?

My boss is a High C (based on observation) and I am a high D/I (7/7/1/1). 
My network is very large; she asks me to coordinate meetings with or ask for deliverables from skip supervisors in other departments. I am confident enough to interact with these senior managers, but feel uncomfortable with her stepping out of the middle as it makes our department look unprofessional.
My technical knowledge is also larger than hers and she relies on me as an expert to make decisions, create processes, etc.

I am sensing that she resents me for this and is intimidated by me. She often won't return my calls or emails, and I have observed her walking away from me as I try to approach her in person. There have been several meetings with my team or unit that I could add value to that she has forgotten to invite me to. I know not to assume intent, but a pattern is forming.

The company standard is bi-weekly one on one's; they are happening with the rest of the team but she has cancelled the last 5 with me and there is nothing scheduled moving forward.

I've listened to the effective relationship series but need more guidance on how to clear the air & make her feel more comfortable around me - one on ones would be a great opportunity but as the individual contributor I don't know if it's my place to set them up? I've requested them a few times but she cancels day of. Mentioning feelings to a High C probably would not get me anywhere. Any other tips?

altadel's picture

If she's tasked you with something, ask to meet to report on the deliverable. Try to break the cycle of avoidance in a way a high-C would want to hold a discussion.

timrutter's picture

I'm afraid that's Liz Ryan for you Jochen. Lots of really good stories and very little actionable advice. You should see her stuff on 'Pain Letters'!

Tim

pucciot's picture

He must start seeing you as an ally...
As the STAR player on the team -- that he hired --and he should get credit for that.

Some concrete things to do :

* Carry his water
If he is trying to initiate something -- support it.
If he is passing down company policies and initiatives -- support it.
Even If he wants to cancel the coffee service -- support it

-- Yes - sometimes - just take "NO" for an answer and say "OK, sure - you're the Boss"

* Be your bosses cheerleader and promoter.
Make sure that you use the language of the team. "We" and "Our Department"
Compliment your boss to other people in the company - when he is not around.
Heck - especially when he is not around.
A High S and High C may be embarrassed and uncomfortable with praise in front of others... so just make sure that
You give him credit. That you give his whole team credit.
-- you may need to swallow some pride for this -- and so what. If you are really that good -- share the wealth of praise --- you will still shine.

* Keep your Boss in the Loop.
CC him on emails to his peers or higher ups.
Let him know your schedule - share it with him on Outlook - or post it on your door.

* Write out a brief weekly Brief of your activities and let him read it at his leisure.

* Let him know, indirectly, that your goal is to make him look good - that he has done well because he hired a STAR player - not a rival.

Good Luck