At several times during our careers, we have reached our wits end when working with different types of bosses. Like a spouse, we have absolutely no control over this work dimension which can make or break your careers, right?
How many of you have experienced this by Vicente del Bosque (Spanish football manager and former player): “A leader is admired; a boss is feared”.
Oftentimes we may have hit a roadblock with bosses yet mustered our strength and returned on Monday morning only to strive harder to make our bosses look good and help them achieve their KPIs. As they say employees do not leave organizations, instead, they leave managers. However, it is not all doom and gloom, there are countless instances of working with great leaders who have unlocked your true potential also.
While this is on one side, but when you face the intersection points when you do not meet eye to eye with your boss and there is a significant ideology clash — that is when your contemplation and introspection kicks in and you are looking in the direction of transitioning. But let me tell you from experience that there are key milestones that will illuminate to you why do not need a boss anymore. If you are not alert enough these signposts will run past you and you will be continuing down the road of routine and rigmarole.
So, what are these signs and how do you recognize that this boss is not for you, or for that matter there is no need of a boss anymore.
# Key 1. Learning by example vs experience
Which do you prefer? Are you the type to follow in the footsteps of leaders/managers and observe them and ask them for guidance and carve your career OR are you the type to try and trial things and learn by your own experience? This fundamental self-discovery of how you will learn will determine how soon you can shrug out of the boss cloak and be your own boss. Learning is the key here which will be the game changer that will chisel your career. How you go about acquiring this professional skills and knowledge so pertinent to career success is what matters.
For instance, if you turn cold feet when there is a client escalation then its still time for you to be the protégé, but if you are still scared when a client escalates on your deliverable but do not show it and face it boldly with counters then this is a sign of mettle and strength.
# Key 2. Being a unitasker or multitasker
Which do you enjoy most? Working in an organization as part of a team doing a particular role efficiently and effectively OR trying various tasks simultaneously? For many of us it is a huge mindset shift from working under a boss doing a set of tasks repeatedly and exceling in it to being on your own and overseeing all operations. The latter can be taxing if you are not exposed to Finance, Systems, and other essential business functions for the smooth conduct of an organization. Your style of working is another key that will tell you about yourself and how you can use that knowledge to shape your career. If you are a successful multitasker and thrive by getting your hands dirty with various tasks at the same time, then you are sure to enjoy your no boss stint.
For example, if you revel in the routine and sulk each time you are told to change direction and travel at short notice and handle emergencies then you are still not ready to be out of the ‘being led’ comfort zone.
#Key 3. Functioning as self-starter or slow mover
Do you rub your hands with glee everyday morning, pen down a to do list and work with zeal and enthusiasm each passing day OR do you work at your own pace and complete tasks in time but never at a frenetic speed? There is nothing wrong with the either, but as a self-starter you have a winning formula within you to be your own boss and chase success. Whereas as a team player you have a set of tasks which you need to complete within a stipulated time and how you apportion it and adjust it within your schedule is totally up to you. That is never the case if you are a start-up owner or starting out on your own, your time is dynamic, and you must be smart, swift, and self-starting to see opportunities where they do not exist at all.
For example, you have built a set of contacts over time, are you enthusiastically reaching out to them or are you waiting for them to reach out to you for a need? If it is the latter, then you are still better off being a team player.
And I am not even getting into the aspect of whether you are financially viable and family commitments to take the plunge of being your own boss. Because those are hygiene factors which obviously you must consider before venturing out on your own.
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