Be an Easy Employee to Manage
By Bonnie Johnson, AgCareers.com

Do you think your current or previous managers would describe you as an ideal employee? Good reviews and references come to employees that are easy to manage. If you want to retain your position, move up in your company, or get good references when you are looking for another opportunity, it is essential that your supervisors do not find managing you a difficult task. Following are some experienced managersí suggestions to help you become a better employee:

  • Ask questions: Everyone faces challenges that they are unable to handle on their own. Knowing when to ask for help is imperative. Promptly seek assistance from your manager or the appropriate person if you need help, but come prepared with research and suggestions. If directions for a project are not clear, ask questions so you are not spending too much time spinning your wheels.
  • Provide updates: Give regular updates to your manager on the status of your projects. Follow-up with assigned tasks/accountabilities; let your boss know how you are progressing on projects and when or if they are completed. PAY ATTENTION TO DEADLINES! Discuss options with your supervisor if you do not think youíll be able to meet a deadline and suggest alternatives. Providing frequent communication to your manager allows them to still feel engaged in the project. Updates also give managers a sense of comfort knowing where projects are at without having to micromanage.
  • Practice good listening: Take notes during meetings. You may even want to send a summary to your boss after the meeting. Taking notes helps you recall details, reminds you of your responsibilities and sends a positive message to your supervisor. An employee that follows directions is better able to work independently and builds trust with their manager.
  • Be a team player: Youíve heard this term a lot, but the general concept of being a team player makes you an easy employee to manage. Seek to understand your employerís goals and objectives. Try to get along with others and work towards accomplishing these goals together. However, have the confidence to speak up in a tactful manner when you have a differing opinion and feel strongly about the topic.
  • Accept criticism: Everyone should expect criticism from their boss; your managerís job is to help you become a better employee by giving you constructive feedback. Take their criticism in stride and address any issues that are brought forward rather than being confrontational or challenging their suggestions.
  • Limit personal interruptions: Stay focused on your work; avoid frequent or prolonged distractions from personal phone calls, text messaging, email, web usage and chatting with co-workers. Sometimes itís hard to avoid home issues affecting your attitude at work. If you are having difficulties, confide with your supervisor, deal with the situation and move forward.
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