A Letter that You Wish Your Boss Would Write

letter-from-bossEditor’s note: This is a guest from Lisa H. (aka RunningBear) of Getting to Zen

What makes my boss so great is that he treats his employees like human beings and not like resources that are there just to help him achieve his goals. Although he is my manager, everything that I do for him feels collaborative (even my performance reviews).

As I was scouring the internet to increase my understanding of boss-employee relationships, I came across a hypothetical note a boss wrote to his employees. What I liked most about note was that it provided great insight on how to establish a good relationship with your boss from a boss’s perspective. I liked the idea so much that I decided to write one of my own.

To: (insert your name)

From: Your Boss

RE: Welcome

Hello (insert your name),

I would like to take this opportunity to welcome you to the company. I am looking forward to working you. My hope is that this letter will give you a better understanding of who I am, what I need from you and how we both can effectively work together

  1. I am under a lot of pressure from upper management, of which most of it you don’t see. Please, don’t hesitate to do or say something that would make my job easier. Most days I am working a minimum of 10 to 14 hours. And although I am compensated for it, it is a lot of hard work with rewards that don’t always pay off quickly.
  2. Your work is important to me but so is everyone else’s. Please remember that I also have the concerns and feelings of other employees both inside and outside of our company.
  3. I may not have been given the training I needed before being named to this supervisory position. As a result, I have had to learn through trial and error; sometimes at your expense. Please give me the same understanding that you would like from me when you make mistakes.
  4. If I am about to do something that could be harmful to my job, please tell me. I may not see an impending disaster that you do. I would rather hear it from you than in the form of a pink slip from the Human Resource department.
  5. Tell me what you need to be happy at work. I am not a mind reader. I want to create an environment in which we both can succeed. Let me know what your career goals are and we can work together to create a plan to achieve them.
  6. If you don’t know the answer to something, don’t make one up. I use the information you give me to make decisions that impact our business in ways that you may unaware of. I don’t expect you to know everything, but I do expect the truth.
  7. If you were a former co-worker of mine, please understand that as your manager I have to evaluate your performance. I hope that my managerial responsibilities will not change our relationship. Sometimes being a manager is lonely.
  8. I would appreciate if you would respect my time by not coming to me at 5:30 PM with a critical issue that could have been discussed at any time during that day. I understand that emergencies happen but when they happen every day it’s not an emergency.
  9. I expect you to take initiative. If you keep running things by me, I’m going to wonder why I have you around.
  10. Let me know when I am doing a good job. I want to be the best manager that I can and feedback is essential for my improvement.
  11. Just because I am your manager doesn’t mean that you can’t invite me to lunch. I have other interests besides work and like to talk about them too.

If you have any questions, please do not hesitate to contact me, my door, in-box and instant messenger is always open. Again, I look forward to working with you.

Your Boss

Now wouldn’t a letter like this be a welcomed edition to the hiring packet? What would you have liked to hear from your boss when you started working at your company?

Lisa H. (aka RunningBear) is the founder of Getting to Zen, a personal development blog featuring articles on productivity, motivation, inspiration and organization. You can sign up for her RSS feed or follow her on Twitter.

* New things are happening at Work Happy Now. We are gearing up for some big changes, so stay tuned. We are trying to align your needs with our own. It’s how businesses are built. Too many people keep doing the same thing that made them successful two years ago. We don’t want to be that kind of company. So we are taking a proactive approach to work happiness.

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4 thoughts on “A Letter that You Wish Your Boss Would Write”

  1. There is a lot to be said for simply sharing what’s top of mind and what the driving forces are, and what the key concerns are, as well as what you want out of something — the expectation setting and the acknowledgment of the road ahead.

  2. This is just so touching! I hope many people get to read this, particularly workers. I’m just glad I have a personal assistant who’s very much quick to exercise her creativity, initiative and expression of concern for me and what we do. Lisa, I hope to read more similar posts. We really need a world (or work place) wherein animosity between heads and workers are lessened, and where productivity on both ends are clear and solid. Cheers to you, girl!

  3. Hi J.D.,
    Sorry for the delay. I am just now seeing your comment. Well said. I completely agree. Unfortunately, we sometimes get in the way of having such straight forward communication.

  4. Hello Arina,
    Thanks for stopping by. I am so glad that you have the opportunity to work with someone like that. For me, it is my boss. :-)We are more apt to do more in a relationship that recognizes our humanness.

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