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February 21, 2016

Get Along with Your Manager

Working for multiple managers requires serious organization. You must constantly monitor tasks and projects and track various due dates, meetings, and timelines. The following tips can ensure that all your managers know what is going on and help you avoid conflicting priorities.shutterstock_98421482

  • Meet with your managers regularly to become familiar with their desired outcomes and the expectations they have of you. Ask them to share the big picture of what is happening in the company, so you can better understand your role.
  • Request that each manager give you deadlines and priority levels for all assignments. If timing and priority are unimportant, suggest your own deadlines, based on your workload and other deliverables.
  • Develop a master spreadsheet that includes every assignment you have been given by each manager. Include deadlines and priorities. Give a copy to each manager.
    • A whiteboard report posted in your office is an effective tool to keep everyone aware of your weekly goals. Use red for critical and milestone dates. You can also put a Word table, Excel spreadsheet, or calendar page on your shared drive. Every Monday, print out the report for the week and post it on your wall where everyone can see it.
    • Communicate with each manager immediately when scheduling conflicts arise.
    • Do what you can to encourage your managers to meet with each other to discuss their priorities. As a team, they can help you schedule your work, which will make everyone involved with your projects more productive.

If you have 12 people pulling you in 12 different directions, your productivity will suffer. Know who your ultimate manager is. This person has the authority to ensure you are not overwhelmed and can be positively productive while meeting everyone’s needs.

For more information, see my blog posts Don’t Let Someone Hold You Up and Tips for Managing Multiple Priorities.

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