Does the Boss Make You Nervous?
Relationships with bosses can be tricky. On the one hand, you’re both adults and are on the same team. But you both know the playing field is not equal. Bosses influence many aspects of an employee’s life, from day-to-day assignments to who will be the next person terminated. No wonder workers sometimes feel on edge around them.
The problem with nerves, however, is that they can lead to a self-fulfilling prophecy. If you’re worrying about making mistakes, your focus may be compromised -- leading to errors or actions that make you seem insecure or incompetent.
To help ease tensions, it may be worth spending some time with your boss. (Yes, I know this sounds hard when being around her already makes you jittery.) Learning about her priorities, likes and dislikes, and expectations for you can help clarify what is important in order for you to do your job to the best of your ability. If you can muster the courage, invite her to lunch or coffee. Your goal isn’t to become BFFs but rather to gain the ease around each other that comes with familiarity.
Perhaps the best way to calm nerves is to be the best employee you can be. After all, a worker who is performing admirably doesn’t have to worry that the boss is going to be on her case every second. Likewise, when people have faith in their abilities, it becomes easier to lower defense mechanisms and instead look at suggestions as learning opportunities rather than as criticism. And an employee who genuinely wants to do the best for the company is bound to be in the boss’s good graces.