How to Get Your Boss to Like You

Get your boss to like you by being a hard worker.
Get your boss to like you by being a hard worker. (Image: Jupiterimages/Comstock/Getty Images)

Getting along with your colleagues makes the workplace more pleasant. The most important person in the office to have on your side may be your boss. Everyone wants to be liked by their boss, but you don’t have to “suck up” to gain approval. Get on the boss’s good side through hard work and genuine behavior in the workplace.

Imitate your boss’s style. While you don’t want to be an obvious copycat, mirroring your boss’s work style gives the impression you are both on the same wavelength. Top-performing salespeople often practice this mirroring style because it also creates a comfort level between two parties. Examples of this could be to keep emails short and sweet if your supervisor also communicates in brief messages, or to keep your speaking voice at a similar volume.

Figure out what you have in common. As in any good relationship, similarities can bring you closer together. Once you determine what you have in common with your superior—whether it is a recreational activity, children of the same age or a common hometown—use this to your advantage to create conversation and even offer help and advice to him or her. Common ground will also help alleviate awkward silences during lunch meetings or when carpooling; you’ll have something enjoyable to talk about after work.

Show up on time. Even if your boss is habitually late, do your best to be on time to work each day. This also goes for meetings. Better yet, show up early; this way, when your boss arrives he or she will see that you are already starting your day. If you will be late, call or send an email to your boss and colleagues to apologize for your delay.

Learn to say no. While volunteering to do everything, helping colleagues with their work and taking on extra tasks may seem laudable, over time it can bog you down. Having too many extra projects at once could create extra stress, as well as affect the quality of your work. Saying no will show your boss that you can prioritize projects.

Don’t reveal your weaknesses. While it is OK to get personal on some level with your boss and other coworkers, leave your personal problems and baggage at the door. Revealing to your boss too much personal information, such as party habits or fights with your spouse, could lead to tension in the workplace. If you show up late to work or have trouble completing projects on time, whether or not it is directly related to the problems you revealed, your boss could assume otherwise. These problems have the potential to become a constant crutch or excuse, which could ultimately lose you some respect in the workplace.

Tips & Warnings

  • Do your work. Just following orders, doing a good job and double-checking your work will make you a valuable, trusted employee, which can easily translate to being liked.
  • Avoid gossip. While bosses may like getting an inside scoop every now and then, frequently talking about coworkers looks bad.

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