If you want to get in your boss’ good graces, you have to say the magic words. Just like there are phrases the boss HATES to hear, like, “That’s not my job.” There are phrases they LOVE to hear. Say the right words and it’ll show the boss you’re not only a cooperative, go-getter – you just might be management material! So, here’s what the boss loves to hear:

  • “I’d love to – no problem!” Say that when the boss asks you to take on a new assignment – even if that assignment is boring, beneath you, or not your job. These days, workers have to be willing to go with the flow. That doesn’t mean you should be a doormat, but you should be a team player.

  • “How can I help?” Volunteering to increase your workload shows you have an extremely valuable quality – initiative! And that go-getter attitude will make you stand out among your fellow co-workers, who may just be doing the bare minimum to earn their paycheck.

  • “What can I do to improve?” It’s intimidating to ask point-blank what your weaknesses are. But it’s a good long-term move because it shows your boss that you want to be a better employee. It also highlights a quality that career experts say is crucial to getting ahead: Self awareness! Most people overestimate their importance and can’t admit mistakes. But if you read any business journal, it’ll say self-awareness is the key to leadership.

  • There was a problem and here’s how I fixed it. The best bosses aren’t micromanagers. They trust their employees to do their jobs. But if you run to the boss with every problem, the boss will see YOU as the problem. Instead, come up with your own solutions. Solving problems and taking initiative shows you’re management material.

Lesson Expert

Meredith McKenna