How to Impress a Workaholic Boss
Make your presence felt at the office—without working around the clock and over the weekend.
Having a workaholic boss is a drag. Your boss is at the office before you arrive every morning. And he/she is still there when you leave every night. Adding to that stomach-sinking sensation is the fact that your Monday morning inbox is full of emails your boss sent the team over the weekend.
Instead of being inspired by your boss's ubiquitous presence, you start to wonder, "Does this person have a life?" Now, it's not like you're some slouch. You hustle and hit every deadline that's given to you. You tackle extra projects thrown your way. But after clocking eight or nine hours at the office, you go home—unlike your workaholic boss. Do you have to match his/her marathon pace to get ahead?
Not necessarily. You can learn how to impress your superiors by achieving just as much as they do without letting work hijack your personal life. These pointers will help you prove your worth and keep you from mimicking your workaholic boss.
Make Your Impact Obvious
You've probably heard the term "work smarter, not harder." There's plenty of benefits to reap from that philosophy. Working longer hours doesn't necessarily mean you'll get more done or do a better job. (Maybe someone should pass along the news to your workaholic boss.) When it comes down to it, it's not the hours that matter—it's what you accomplish while on the clock.
Show your boss what results you're achieving by sending a summary at the end of the day or week. But when you send along these progress reports, focus on what you accomplished and the impact of your work—not the hours you logged to do it.
Your responsibility lies in making sure you get results, so make your accomplishments visible to your boss. It's critical that you share all the progress you made during the workweek, otherwise, your boss might not see or grasp how much you are getting done.
Step Up Your Productivity
Once you've shifted the focus on how much you get done and not how long you spend doing it, start working on increasing your efficiency. The more obstacles you can get out of your way, the more tasks you'll be able to check off your to-do list in a shorter amount of time.
Begin by identifying and eliminating time-wasters and managing potential distractions such as email and interruptions from chatty coworkers. You can still get the same amount of work done as your workaholic boss, but you need to hone your time-management skills.
Then move on to planning and prioritizing your workload. Some people spend too much time working because they think everything is urgent. Instead, start your day with the top three things you must complete based on importance and deadlines. When you're asked to do something else, weigh it against your prioritized tasks before taking it on.
If your boss has suggestions for how to prioritize your workload, take that advice, and be proactive to show your boss you are on the lookout for new solutions. Alert your boss to any policy changes, software updates, or organizational shifts that could affect your productivity either positively or negatively.
Exercise Your Limits
It's important to set healthy boundaries that allow you to achieve your professional goals while meeting your other life goals as well. When you're asked to work overtime for multiple days in a row, or you're expected to always be on call, you need to speak up.
Do this by framing your need for time off in terms of a long-term benefit to your employer. Having time to yourself or time with your family is critical to helping you avoid burnout and is, in fact, an essential part of your productivity plan.
Sometimes, however, you will need to stay late at the office to pitch in with special projects or last-minute deadlines. Be flexible enough to put in extra hours temporarily, especially if you know doing so could help put you on your boss's radar and advance your career goals. Just remember to return to your normal schedule when the project has passed.
There should always be a clear short-term goal when you're putting in extra time, and it should be apparent how the extra hours you're putting in are directly related to the goal.
Trade In Your Workaholic Boss for Someone Better
If you're constantly thinking of how to impress your boss because they seem to thrive on nothing besides work and working, there's a good chance you'll experience burnout before too long. Are you ready to make a change but aren't sure where to start? Monster can help you out. Create a profile for free and we can help you find jobs that would be a better fit for your needs.