My very first grad school class was Executive Coaching. Several coaches came to class each weekend to share with us their different styles.
The coach who stood out the most was a tough woman, who called it like she saw it. She said something to our class of 20-somethings that I will never forget:
At this point in your career, your job is to make your boss look good.
At first, my reaction was, “What?” I was quite offended by the notion. Yet, the more I thought on it, the more I realized she was right. If you do your job very well, no matter how far down on the totem pole you are, then your boss will look good. If your boss is happy with you, not only will your day-to-day work experience be better, but you will climb the ladder so much faster.
I have been fortunate to work with an incredible boss for the last two years, who truly helped lift me into my new role. And the day I changed my attitude – when I said to myself that I did, sincerely, want my boss to look good – I became happier at work. And today, I am reaping the benefits.