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Reporting up and down: 10 top management tips

by on 12 Oct, 2012

Here’s my top tips for reporting up and down.
Reporting up: you and your team may seem like just a cost centre to those you report to, and any request for additional funds or other resources may seem to them a reduction in profits.  And those above you may come from a different backgound from you, not with the experience necessary to understand what you and your team really do.

Here’s my top 5 tips for reporting  and advocating up:

1                     Link your report or request to the objectives of those you report to.  For example: “So you want to grow market share, we can do this by…”

2                     Use their tools.  For example: if they use spreadsheets, use them; if they use PowerPoint, use it.

3                     Dress like them. For example: if reporting to men and they wear ties, wear one.

4                     State a problem which has an impact on their objectives and solve it for them.  For example: “We have a problem in how the digital development side is working with each content-generation team.  This has a grave impact on the quality of our websites  and so the traffic.  We can solve this if…”

5                     Tell them the consequences if they do not deliver to you what you request.  For example:  “If we don’t do this, our social media traffic will go down and so harm our revenue on these platforms.”

Reporting or appraising down is equally important.  Here’s my top 5:

Reporting and appraising down:

1                     Praise them, only when due, for when they think they have done a good job or worked hard.  For example: “You all worked hard on this supplement and it looked good and had great content.”

2                     Tell them again and again what your common objectives are.  For example:  “We serve these readers with the best content about…”

3                     Get them to respond to your appraisal of their individual or collective work against the agreed criteria.  For example: “So, how do you think this matches to our needs to increase our use of social media?”

4                     Display your genuine  enthusiasm and belief in the project.  Don’t fake this. For example: “I firmly believe that…”

5                     Show your experience by explaining what you know.  For example: “I’ve learned that if we…”
And you see that in every case I’ve provided an example.  Examples are always good.

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