Your Boss and How to Bring Him Down
You need to be careful. But there may be a time to bring your boss down and take over from him (or her).
Exception to Rule
In our recent article “How to politically advance your career” we said that it was most important to stay onside with your boss. There is one exception to this.
The only time that you should ever go against your own immediate boss is if you sense that the big boss is unhappy with your boss. Either that or he is running a project that is behind schedule or that he has failed to deliver.
Be very careful here. However, if you sense you are being encouraged at all, let the big boss know what has gone wrong with the project and why. Tell them what should’ve been done but wasn’t and how to make sure that nothing like this happens again.
Do this especially if you feel that your boss is on the way out and that they might be looking for someone who can actually deliver the rest of the project.
Take the opportunity of advancing your prospect.
Use the Users Too
If you have been keeping well ‘in’ with the Business Users, now would be the time to let them know what the real problems of the project are, and what could save the project if there was only someone in place who could make the changes that would get the project back on track.
They’ll let the big boss in IT know and they’ll demand that he makes the appropriate changes.
Of course, if they do put you in place, the first thing that you should do is damp down expectations. You tell them that you first need to make an assessment of the damage done before you proceed.
Of course the damage will be ‘very extensive’ and ‘even worse than you had thought’. As they now think that the previous guy, your boss, was a complete clown they are absolutely sure to believe you.
Take Your Chance and Take Down Your Boss
Never, never, never make the mistake by being too positive at this stage. Don’t try to please them by making rash promises that you can get it all back on track.
Projects never speed up. They only slow down.
Once your Damage Assessment Report has been made the next thing that you should do is to re-estimate the project.
This will be the last opportunity you get to make things a bit easier for yourself and to give yourself a chance of delivering on time.
Another tip would be to have a separate project estimation for those working on the project that is a bit tighter.
Remember Parkinson’s Law, i.e. that the work expands to fit the time allocated to it.