By: Nealey Whisler, Global Director of Talent Management & Engagement | 1/29/2020 |

This month we’re talking about Effortless Experience, closely related to our Culture of Service value. We’ll discuss ways to decrease effort for customers as well as co-workers. This read is about a very particular type of co-worker, the boss. I’ve had many bosses, the competitive boss, the fun boss, the “OMG I cannot believe you trusted me to do that” boss, the “it’s okay to manage up” boss, the wise boss, you get the picture. Either way, bosses are customers too, here are some tales.

In college, I was a waitress, one of my most favorite jobs EVER. Shout out to the early 2000s The Airliner Crew! Our owners, their friends and family were often guests and it was kind of a big deal to wait on them. It was my goal to remember their favorites and special request, always make it easy and get it right. And here’s another thing, you gotta hit that sweet spot/timing where the new drink arrives just before the old drink goes empty, customers love this! When I think about work, this job is where I learned about great service #blessed.

I love to organize and write i.e. neat printing and even cursive writing. One of the things I would do for my bosses early on (without being asked) was to find and organize all their contacts. I would re-write (in super clear penmanship) contact cards for their rolodexes and save their most important phone numbers to my cell. The back-up storage meant no matter where we were, important digits were just a click away…and we traveled a lot.

Now you know I enjoy organization (not The Home Edit level) but working on it, so it should be no surprise that I LOVE a good agenda too. For as long as I can remember, I’ve prepared an agenda and/or talking points for 1:1’s. We sometimes forget – Bosses are contributors too. They have their own deliverables, their own customers, and yes probably an inbox fuller than yours, so maximize the time you have with them. I try to note throughout the week my boss’s priorities, where they need assistance, and what I need help with. Then before the BIG event, I prioritize talking points so we can focus on the most impactful items. This incredibly simple task (an agenda) makes it easier to get the help you need. BUT – if you have a boss that cannot stand agendas or over-the-top structure, tone it down a notch…. you can still have talking points on the down-low.

Finally, get to know your boss- their preferred communication style, who they are as a person, even their calendar. If you want to help them or need them to help you, this is a big one. I once had a boss who (no joke) would be on two conference calls at one time while simultaneously meeting with someone in person. Now to this superstar, he loved all that activity, thrived on it. So, for him, I would knock on his office door and he would just wave me in! That was a long time ago, now a simple Teams “are you free quick” works best.

I’ve learned, culture of service skills are universal. I’ve added and refined my toolkit throughout my career and will continue to work on this craft for years to come.  #Knowyourboss #BossesAreCustomersToo