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By Teresa Taylor

Here we go again; it is the beginning of the New Year and usually not too far off is time to re-organize, aka “shakeup” the company. Oh no, that means a new boss!

Most companies at some point will be involved in a merger or acquistion. There is nothing that creates more anxiety and change than a little M&A activity. The end result is always some sort of shakeup.  This shakeup can be in the form of moving offices, closing down facilities, re-organizations and almost always someone will get a new boss.

For one reason or another the average person will have ten or more new bosses over the course of their career.  Some people will expereince this change in only a few short years, others over a life-time.  It is inevitable, and the one thing we can count on at work is change.

You can watch the change go by and wonder why it didn’t go your way, or you can influence it. The following four “shakeup” tips will help you navigate the turbulent waters. They are written from my personal and professional experiences and shared in my book, The Balance Myth: Rethinking Work-Life Success:

Tip  #1: Bring solutions, not problems
There is nothing worse for a new boss than to have a parade of people in her office that can define – in great detail - what is wrong.  Some people have truly made an art out of defining the problem. Come to the table with solutions, even if they are high-level ideas. Show that you want to be part of the solution, not the problem.  If you must identify a problem, give at least three alternative solutions.

Tip  #2:  Show initiative 
Try to anticipate the needs of your new boss and the new organization.  Put yourself in her shoes.  If you were the new boss, what would you want to know? Try to demonstrate that you desire to be an active part of the change that is occuring. Complete a project that you were not asked to do. Initiative can be demonstrated through surprise.

Tip  #3: Read the tea leaves
Be observant.  Look around and try to read the new landscape.  What seems to be important to the new leadership team? There is no quesiton that the culture is going to evolve, embrace it by observing and understanding the differences. Watch the details and try to figure out what the new boss responds positively to.

Tip  #4: Try to score early wins
It sounds simple, but is difficult to do. You want to be thought of as player on the new team without coming across as insincere or too political. Pick something that you have always been good at and let it shine. Especialy, with a new boss you want your name to be one that comes to mind quickly. You want to be thought of and be ready for any assignment.

Many of my best promotions were during a shakeup. I was willing to try anything new and believed that my job would continue to evolve, even if it wasn’t the best option at that moment. Shakeups have many steps to them. Be ready to climb the stairs even if you have to stop and take a breath!  That is ok, the stairs may be long but the climb will be worth it.



About the Author:
Teresa Tayloris a nationally recognized, Fortune 200 executive who brings integrity, focus, vision and agility to corporate leadership, while advising companies, government agencies and others on a successful business model.  Her book, The Balance Myth: Rethinking Work-Life Success, is inspiring women to succeed professionally and personally.-