Building a strong relationship with your boss

Your boss sets your targets, acts as a gatekeeper to key resources, and represents you at higher levels. He or she is critical to your success, and nobody can boost your achievements or stand in your way more effectively.

Strangely enough, it’s you rather than your boss who controls this relationship. Although he or she will need certain things from you – information and achievements – this doesn’t come close to what you need from your boss. Nobody should work as hard or care as much as you to make this relationship work.

As a new direct report, you have a brief window of opportunity to set the tone of the relationship. Once established, this is very difficult to change. Although there is risk involved, it is better to work proactively to set up the relationship in a way that works well for you rather than to wait and see how the boss wants to manage things.