Article | Harvard Business Review | May 2007

Managing Your Boss

by John J. Gabarro and John P. Kotter


The best way to make a major impact in your organization? Forge a strong relationship with your boss. You'll get the support and resources you need to put your great ideas into action. But "managing up" isn't easy. For example, if you're reporting to a new CEO, you stand a good chance of finding yourself out the door. In this unique situation, it's vital to make the right first impression and swiftly establish your value. Equally challenging, it's not always clear what actions and attitudes your boss expects from you—or how he prefers to communicate and make decisions. This Harvard Business Review collection provides the guidebook you'll need to build a positive bond with your boss. You'll find suggestions for starting off on the right foot with a new supervisor, demonstrating the behaviors he expects, and discerning his work-style preferences. "Managing up" isn't manipulation. It's the surest route to giving your boss the cooperation he needs—and getting the resources you need to excel on the job.

Keywords: Organizations; Relationships; Value; Behavior; Communication; Decisions;


Gabarro, John J., and John P. Kotter. "Managing Your Boss." Managing Up, 2nd Edition (HBR Article Collection). Harvard Business Review 85, no. 5 (May 2007).