Making sure that your boss trusts you is important not just for the next good performance review but for building a future with the company. The steps that will build your boss’s trust aren’t magic but strategies that will improve your work. Seeing that you can accept guidance will lead the boss to understand you won’t make the same careless mistakes over and over. Demonstrating that you think ahead shows you can anticipate and avoid obstacles. Here are other ways to build your boss’s trust that you are succeeding at your job.
Be a good listener.
Listen when your boss is talking. Make eye contact. Turn off your phone and put it on the table so that your boss can tell you will not be distracted. You want your boss to know that what’s being said is important to you.
Learn from your mistakes.
Don’t make the same mistakes again and again. You’re going to slip up, but repeating the same errors often tells your boss that you’re not paying attention or you’re sloppy or you just don’t care. None of those are messages you want to send your supervisor.
Own your mistakes.
Don’t try to blame other people or hide your mistakes from your boss. You’ll only destroy trust. Your boss wants to know others can rely on you.
Discuss projects with your boss before you start so that you can anticipate and find solutions. Looking ahead can help prevent common mistakes.
Warn your boss about obstacles.
Don’t surprise your boss with bad news at the last minute. Let your boss know before important deadlines if a project is falling behind schedule. Give advance notice if you are edging over your budget. Delaying until it’s too late to fix the problem will destroy trust. Adjusting expectations as you go along allows your boss a chance to give advice and own the solution.
Explore solutions before asking for help.
When you run into trouble, try to come up with solutions to present to your boss instead of just asking for help. You’ll let the boss know that you’ve considered options and that you’re seeking input but not depending on the boss for an answer.
Ask before sharing your views.
Don’t tell your manager what’s wrong with their decision without first asking respectfully to give your opinion. The boss may be happy at times to hear your input but at others may not want to listen to your criticism. This is a moment to exercise tact and diplomacy. Use your best judgment.
Pay attention to the boss’ mood.
If your boss seems particularly busy, ask if you can do anything to ease the stress. We feel connected to people who are sensitive to our moods. Being aware of your boss’s emotions can make your relationship stronger.
Set definite goals.
Don’t just tell your boss that you’re going to increase sales for the company. Let him know that you’re going to 10 more sales calls each week. That’s not a vague goal but an action plan that you can document.
Sit down for a job description review.
Your personal goals may be ambitious, but they will be more successful if they are aligned with your boss’s goals. Reviewing your job description with your boss opens up the opportunity to find out the boss’s expectations. Are you doing the tasks that he or she considers important?