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Real Business : Issue 1 2012
SARAH RIEGELHUTH has reached the most senior levels of the financial services sector while a lot of her peers have barely set out. Riegelhuth is director and senior financial adviser at Wealth Enhancers, a board member of the Association of Financial Advisers, she plays an active role in the Women in Finance Network , and she was named as one of The Age Melbourne Magazine’s Top 100 movers and shakers in business, sport, art and non-profit sectors for 2011. She is also an avid snowboarder and triathlete. Not bad for a 30-year-old. Is there a secret to getting to the top tables of business before everyone else? Look at successful young business people who have achieved that big promotion, the CEO’s chair, or their first board position. They have something in common besides chutzpah. They know how to manage up. Dr Lois Frankel, president of Corporate Coaching International, says many aspiring managers confuse managing up with kissing up. “They don’t want to be perceived as the latter, so they don’t take the extra steps needed to ensure they understand their management goals, needs and expectations,” she says. How do you assess whether someone is good at managing up? Roberta Matuson, president of Human Resource Solutions, says they are the ones who seem to get Soft skill: getting on with the boss Do not confuse managing up with kissing up. STORY EMILY ROSS MANAGE YOUR MANAGER 25 COACHING TIPS Accept differences Don’t expect everyone to want to work the way you want to. Learn to manage people’s preferences and personalities. Avoid assumption Think about different points of view and don’t make assumptions about the way other people think and behave. Add value Have a candid conversation with your boss about what you can do to help them achieve organisational objectives in addition to just doing your job. Add value, don’t just cover the basics. Highlight effort Communicate regularly what you’re doing to help the organisation grow, save the company money, or improve efficiency. This ensures not only that you’re on the right track but also illuminates your efforts. Communicate well Be aware of different communication preferences. Some people like a chat in the hallway, others a tweet, others prefer a long email report. Share learning Bring lessons learned from training or attendance at professional association meetings and conferences back to your department for discussion. It shows that you want to provide a return on the investment made in you by implementing best practices of similar firms in your industry. Emphasise positive contributions There’s nothing wrong with tooting your own horn a bit, provided it’s done in a way that emphasises how your behaviors impact the bottom line. SOURCE: DR LOIS FRANKEL “Quite often people act like a shop steward and fail to think from other points of view,” he says. “ You have got to think of the issues and concerns of the person you are managing up to.” Another career acceleration tip, according to Evans, is the importance of quality mentoring. Work well with an influenti al mentor and they will become an advocate for you. “ You don’t need to blow your own trumpet,” he says. “I am a great believer that actions speak louder than words.” whatever they need. The y develop strong relationships with those above them, which is the key. Group managing director of Professional Investment Services Grahame Evans was appointed to the board of life insurance company Tender Life at the age of 32, and completed his MBA at 37. He caught on early that managing relationships effectively was critical to career progression; being able to see the business from your manager’s perspective, from the customers’ perspectives. 25_ManagingUp.indd 25 25_ManagingUp.indd 25 6/02/2012 6:13:17 PM 6/02/2012 6:13:17 PM
Issue 1 2010
Issue 3 2012