We've just launched a free one-on-ones mini-course for employees (includes a one on one download with one on one form plus tips to manage up)

Rethinking the Boss Relationship

When I started my first job at the age of 22 I can honestly say that I never gave the whole “Boss Relationship” a second thought. Bosses seemed to operate on a whole other level. They sat in their management wing of the building while the rest of us – the minions of the company – occupied the shared working spaces. My boss would occasionally do a “walk through” to check up on the team and perhaps ask how things were going. And occasionally I would stop by his office to ask question or tell him something. We had weekly team meetings and performance reviews but looking back I realize that I really didn’t know my boss at all. I can’t tell you what was important to him or what his objectives were. I don’t know really know much about his personal life or even what he liked to do in his free time.

Years on, I find myself in a completely different situation.

  • I work for a boss who makes building good employer-employee relationships a priority,
  • He places high importance on employee engagement and employee retention,
  • He understands the value of growing and developing my skills,
  • He gives me regular performance feedback and,
  • He makes it a priority to meet with me for a set time, on a set day, every week

That’s why I have a great working relationship with my boss and now I know that it’s the most important work relationship that I have.

The Importance of a Good Boss Relationship

Why is this so important? Well besides making you infinitely more happy at work and giving you greater job satisfaction a good boss relationship is important because:

  • Your boss holds the key to your performance reviews, career development, bonuses and increases and,
  • To be effective in your job you need guidance and direction from your boss.

The Best Way to Build a Great Working Relationship With Your Boss

If you're asking yourself, "How do I manage my manager?" or, "How do I manage upwards?" then the answer is simpler then you think.

Communication is fundamental to building good relationships. Yes, I communicated with bosses in the past. What I didn’t have, was focused one-on-one time with them and that has made all the difference. In my current position I’m fortunate to have a boss who implements weekly one-on-one meetings with his directs. These meetings are:

  • On a set day and and at a set time each week and,
  • Never missed.

This means I have dedicated time each week during one-on-ones to tell my boss:

  • What you’re working on,
  • What you’ve accomplished,
  • What your successes are,
  • What problems you’ve solved and,
  • What you’re doing to help your boss meet specific objectives.

Not only do they provide a communication channel for you to give your boss regular status updates but one-on-one meetings are also:

  • A time for you to discuss the things that are important to you,
  • A time for your boss to focus on you with performance feedback, questions, coaching and mentoring and task delegation.

To find out how to have effective one-on-ones with your boss and a good one-on-one meeting agenda, register for the free one-on-ones mini-course for employees( includes a free one on one download with one on one form plus tips to manage up):


  • Do you really know your boss and what’s important to him/her?
  • Do you have a good working relationship with your boss?
  • Are you engaged and happy at work?

If you answered no to these then weekly one-on-one meetings with your boss are the best way to build a great boss relationship. But remember – not all bosses know how to be good managers. If you’re not already having them then take the initiative to schedule weekly one-on-ones with your boss.

P.S - Do you have a one-on-one form for planning and tracking your one-on-one meetings with your boss? Click here to get one. It will also show you a good one-on-one meeting agenda and what topics to cover plus tips to manage up.


Do you have any questions, comments or tips for building a better relationship with your boss? Help the rest of us out by sharing in the comments below.

Boss Camp

I bet your staff would rather be at the beach than working hard. But you’re the poor boss who’s responsible for their work. Managing is hard. Find out how to make managing easy at WWW.BOSS.CAMP. The program includes topics such as:

  • How to hire for performance,
  • How to motivate employees,
  • What are bad employee motivators,
  • What you must do as a manager but isn't on your job description,
  • How leaders get power.