Tuesday, October 6, 2009

Have a difference of opinion with the boss?- You own 'the difference'.

Naval officers put themselves at considerable risk when their vision and strategic intent are at odds with those of their boss. Some of our Navy bosses view their positions as non-negotiable. But, your having a different strategic vision than your boss may be simply a matter of degree and therefore not completely unacceptable.

Complicating the issue is that some senior leaders have an absolute unwillingness to share their vision with their subordinates. This may be the result of the senior's insecurity with their vision or even worse, their own lack of vision (i.e., they have nothing to share). Make your best effort to have good communications with the boss and do the best you can in extracting his strategic vision. Failing this, you're on your own and will have to maintain some level of self-awareness and a sensitivity to your boss's shortcomings.

Just know you are in shoal waters. Someone once said, "when you and your boss have a difference of opinion - your boss owns 'the opinion' and you own 'the difference'."

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