A healthy, positive relationship with your boss makes your work life much easier. Managing up is the practice of actively working toward that healthy relationship - primarily through effective communication.
Techniques to manage up include:
1. Communicate your priorities. Establish a two-way dialogue with your manager and share your priority list on a regular basis.
Example: Send a Slack message to your manager each Monday morning of your three top priorities for the week. Encourage your manager to validate and revise the list.
2. Proactively anticipate needs. Pay attention to opportunities to take small tasks off of your manager’s plate to unburden them.
Example: If the monthly business review (MBR) always requires a note taker, volunteer a week ahead of time.
3. Adapt your communication style. With a slew of communication tools available today, ask your manager what their preference is.
Example: Your boss prefers face-to-face interaction to Slack. Schedule a 15-minute meeting to check in on a project, even if it is the same day.