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专栏 - 人间烟火

主动出击,5大沟通技巧让身在远方的老板看到你

查大伟 2014年06月30日

查大伟(David Chard)是一位领导力培养顾问,在亚太地区拥有30年的从业经验。作为联心管理顾问有限公司(EngagingMinds)的创始人,他全身心致力于通过领导力和领导策略实现个人和组织向敬业型转变。他普通话流利,经常来往中国。他的联系方式是:info@engagingminds.biz
老板跟你不在同一间办公室,甚至不在同一个城市、同一个国家,无论你干出了多少成绩,老板也看不见。这样,小到绩效评估,大到升职加薪,都会对你不利。怎么办?主动出击,让老板看见你!

    “所得并非所值,有所求才能有所得。”

    谈判专家莱斯特•嘉洛斯

    “重复才能实现沟通。重复、重复、再重复。”

    广告大师李奥•贝纳

    最近,一位来自中国的读者给我们发来了下面这封电子邮件:

    “我是一位营销业务负责人,跟老板不在同一间办公室。我从来没有听到过她对我有什么负面评价,所以我想她对我的工作成绩感到满意。但最近我要求涨工资时遭到了她的拒绝。她告诉我,她没有在我的工作中看到多少亮点。实际上,我工作很努力,而且在没有任何指导的情况下完成了许多困难的任务,因为她非常忙。我怎么才能让她了解到这些情况呢?我不想跟她发生争执。”——失意之人

    从这一小段文字中能很容易地感觉到,这位读者在工作时非常努力,而且非常愿意做出成绩。但她的工作没有得到老板的认可,这让她非常沮丧。听起来很熟悉吧?我听到这种事的频率相当高——亚洲地域广阔,自己的老板在另一个国家、另一座城市或者同一座城市的另一端生活和工作的现象比比皆是。因此,员工和老板之间很容易出现“看不见,想不到”的情况。

    以下是跟不在眼前的老板进行沟通的五项建议。(实际上,如果你的老板跟你同处一室而且就在你身边办公,这些建议也同样有效!)

    1.跟老板清清楚楚地把绩效标准讲明白。

    给人做培训时,我会问对方他们跟老板商定的绩效标准是什么,他们却说不清楚自己怎样才算完成了工作,这让我很意外。在这个问题上,很多时候都没有形成文字。这些人经常把自己的职位描述作为参考!实际上,职位描述的内容是员工要做什么样的工作,需要具备哪些能力以及工作的主要重心等等。它界定了员工在企业中的作用。

    但职位描述并不足以说明“今后12个月以及更长时间内老板对员工的具体绩效有什么样的期望?”要明确这样的问题,员工和老板就得针对工作目标进行探讨。有时,如果公司制定了绩效管理流程,这样的对话就会成为这个流程中的一环。很多情况下,老板和员工从来都不探讨这些问题。在没有明确绩效预期,更没有白纸黑字写下来的情况下,你们怎么去公平地评价自己的工作呢?做不到!你没有任何办法来左右老板对你工作表现的印象。到最后,你很可能会成为失意的人。

    如果没有把这个问题讲得明明白白,我建议你们马上要求跟老板开个会,确定绩效目标,而且你们要坚持明确以下问题:

    • 今后12个月你要求我取得哪些具体成绩

    • 如果我的工作表现达到预期,对我进行评估时将采用哪些具体的绩效标准?

    • 换句话说,怎样才能彻彻底底地确定我已经达到了你的预期。

    不要接受含糊不清的答案和笼统的回答,比如“做好工作就万事大吉”。很多时候,老板们并没有真正考虑过这些问题,因此他们也不是有备而来。在这种情况下,建议他们一周后(或者一段时间以后,具体由你们商定)带着答案再来和你见面。

    “要是他们再也不跟我彻底讲清楚我怎样才算完成了工作,那该怎么办?”我就知道会有人这么说!要是出现这样的情况,你们就坐下来,自己起草一份工作绩效标准,然后请他们过目,同时作出评价。无论如何,如果老板或人事部门不能为你提供明确的绩效标准,你们自己就要承担起责任,确保这些标准得到确立。你们要采取主动,而不是“默默忍受”,要通过这样的行动来展示自己的责任感。你们具有领导力吗?那就采取主动吧。

    记住:所得并非所值,有所求才会有所得。

    2. 给老板一份书面绩效目标和完成工作的标准

    跟老板一清二楚地商定了绩效目标和标准后,用电子邮件给他们发一份,同时一定要在自己工作的地方贴一份,以便每天都能看到自己的目标。让老板知道你决心实现这些目标,而且一定要专注于这些你和老板商定的目标。每天多看几次,确保自己先做那些能让你实现这些目标的重要工作(参见此前我在财富中文网上发表的文章《时间管理是空话,集中精力吃青蛙》)。

    “You don’t get what you deserve. You get what you negotiate.”

    Lester Karrass, Negotiation Expert

    “Communication works by repetition. Repeat, repeat, and repeat.”

    Leo Burnett

    Recently Fortune China received the following email from a reader in China:

    "I‘m a marketing executive. My boss is not in the same office with me. I never received bad comments from her and I thought she’s satisfied with my work result. But when I asked for a raise recently, she refused and told me she didn't see many highlights in my work. Actually, I worked hard and finished many difficult tasks without any guidance because she was so busy. How can I let her know that? I don't want to argue." – Frustrated

    From this short note it is easy to sense that the writer is working very hard, is very committed to delivering results and also very frustrated that her work is not being recognized by her boss. Sound familiar? I hear this kind of thing quite frequently---Asia is a big region and its very common to report to a boss that lives and works in a another country, another city or even far across town. As such, it’s easy for an employee to be “out of sight, out of mind.”

    Here are five tips for managingcommunication with an Absentee Boss. (In fact, these tips will work find even if your boss sits right next to you in the same office!)

    No. 1. Negotiate Crystal Clear Performance Criteria with Your Boss.

    I am always surprised when I ask people that I coach about their agreed performance criteria for their job and they aren’t able to articulate the standards of success for me. Often no written document exists. Usually they will refer to their job description! In reality, your job description outlines the kind of work you will be doing, the competencies required, key job focuses, etc. It spells out your role in the organization.

    But a job description is not enough to clarify “What specific results is the boss expecting from me in the next 12 months and over the longer term?” To get that level of clarity requires a Goal Setting Conversation. Sometimes such a conversation happens as part of the company’s Performance Management process, if such a process is in use. Often, these conversations never happen at all. Without clearly defined performance expectations, written in black and white, how are you going to get a fair evaluation of your work? You won’t! You will have zero leverage to manage their perception of your performance. And its likely you will end up frustrated.

    If you don’t have such crystal clarity, I urge you to request a Goal Setting Meeting with your boss and insist on clarifying:

    • What specific results will you hold me accountable for delivering in the next 12 months

    • What specific success criteria will be applied in order to evaluate if the results were delivered as expected?

    • In other words, how will you know, beyond all doubt that I have met your expectations.

    Don’t accept vague answers and generalizations like “just do good work and everything will be fine.” Often bosses haven’t really asked themselves these questions and so they won’t have a ready answer. If that’s the case, ask them to come back to you in a week (or other agreed time-frame) with some answers.

    “But what if they never come back with the crystal clear success criteria?” I can hear people saying! In that case, sit down and draft your own success criteria for your work and send it to them for consideration. Talk to people who have more experience and ask them to review and comment on your draft. In any case, its up to you to ensure that clear performance benchmarks are in place if the boss or HR can’t provide them for you. Show your commitment by taking the lead instead of ‘suffering in silence.’ Are you a Leader? Then lead.

    Remember: you don’t get what you deserve, you get what you negotiate.

    2. Send Your Boss a Written Copy of Your Performance Goals and Success Criteria

    Once you have agreed crystal clear performance goals and benchmarks with your boss, send them a copy via email and be sure to keep a copy posted in your workplace where you can see your goals every day. Let your boss know you are committed to achieve these, and more, and you will stay focused on the agreed goals. Refer to your goals several times a day and make sure you organize around priority work that will lead to achieving your goals. (See my previous Fortune China article on Swallowing 3 Frogs.) 

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