Whether you are going to a new job, or your current manager is moving up in her career, or just moving on, it's a good idea to take the initiative to learn more about your new boss. Often, team members at work think just the opposite. "Isn't that my new manager's job?" Not necessarily. You will have meetings with your new boss, but those may focus more on day-to-day tasks and deadlines. What you need to know may not come up in these conversations. Or, they might be more one-sided interactions. Here is some work advice to prepare you when there is a management change during your career. With these four tips, you can start on the right foot when reporting to a different manager.
1. Schedule a meeting to discuss your role and expectations from the new manager’s perspective. Ask clarifying questions and probe for specifics. Make sure you understand your manager's priorities because those priorities will become yours.
2. Find out how the new manager likes to communicate and stay informed. Some managers want to know everything, and others only want to be in the loop. Does she want detailed reports or updates? Too much communication can be just as bad as not enough. Find a happy medium through specific examples and dialogue.
3. Discover what your new manager expects regarding day-to-day work habits, availability, and responsiveness. People may have goal and task awareness, but fail to consider whether their work habits align with the new boss. One may expect you to always be available via chat. Another might not even use chat. It can be helpful to ask the new boss about their pet peeves in the workplace.
4. While you're getting to know the boss, it will be useful to figure out their personality style. Is the boss an introvert or extrovert? Are they focused on the details and facts? Are they more abstract or speak in concrete terms. Are they inclined to focus on tasks instead of relationships? Take an assessment like 16 Personalities to learn your style and gain awareness of others. When you understand what drives certain behaviors and actions, you can communicate much more effectively.