It’s Labor Day in America, no better time for the LGL “Be A Better Boss Challenge.” Don’t worry, no ice buckets or donations necessary (although our porch was filled with buckets on Sunday). I’m just advocating for a bit of focused effort on taking your relationship with your team (and with your boss) to the next level.
Of course, if you can’t imagine anything more fulfilling than dumping a bucket of icewater on the head of your boss, you best read on. If you think your team would love that opportunity, you better go all in and buy the book (for your team). Just saying ;-)
Strained Boss Relationships are Everywhere
A few statistics from recent research.
- 31% of employees don’t like their boss (Accenture)
- 65% would choose a better leader over a raise (McQuaid, Bad Boss Survey)
- The majority of people would trust a stranger over their boss (HBR)
Just like any other relationship, the best way to improve such relationships is to open the lines of communication. Even strong manager/employee relationships can be made stronger by taking the time to connect.
Who’s in the Best Position to Start the Conversation?
I recently shared the survey from my book with a group of about 50 managers representing a variety of organizations and industries in the public and private sectors. When I encouraged them to take the survey back and share it with their boss, my request was met with a universal chorus of shaking heads, uneasy laughter, and a resounding “no way.” On the other hand, when I asked them if they would be willing to use the survey with their own teams, they were much more receptive. It makes sense. It’s much easier if the person with the power is the one who initiates the, “Let’s make our relationship the best we can” conversation.
And so this Labor Day, I leave you with this Be a Better Boss Challenge. Have your team take the Real Boss Survey (available free with this link) and then meet with them one-on-one to discuss how you can take your relationship to the next level.
Or, if you don’t like that game, use this week to do something specific to improve the relationship with at least one or two people on your team.
And of course, I encourage you to take the challenge to the next level and do something specific to enhance your relationship with your own boss as well.
For now, please share your stories and ideas of other specific ways you’ve worked to identify and improve your relationship with your team or with your boss in the comments below. Our community needs your insights.
Another tool that can help is 8 Questions You Should Ask Your Boss.