How to Im­press the Hell Out of Your Boss

Au­thor and TV star Kelly Cutrone sounds off on the big blun­ders new­bies (and those of us who re­ally should know bet­ter) make...

Cosmopolitan (India) - - CAREER -

She re­duced Lau­ren Con­rad to tears on The Hills, so there is no doubt that Kelly Cutrone is slightly ter­ri­fy­ing. Re­cently, this head of Us-based fash­ion PR firm Peo­ple’s Rev­o­lu­tion fur­ther demon­strated in her book If You have to Cry, Go Out­side; And Other Things Your Mother Never Told You what it takes to be on top. Here are Cutrone’s no-bs tips to help you score ma­jor points with the boss.

Check Your Emos At the Door

“When my em­ploy­ees make a mis­take I want them to fix the prob­lem quickly and move on.”

“One of the first rules you learn when you start work­ing for me is that if you have to cry, go out­side. Picture this scene, which has been re­peated so many times in my of­fice over the years; an in­tern car­ry­ing a pricey grown up the steps doesn’t no­tice that she’s drag­ging it on a hard­ware floor that has been soak­ing up dirt and grime for years. The bot­tom of the beau­ti­ful gown is soon black, and rather than be­ing on its way to a shoot, it is now headed to the drycleaner, cost­ing

my client a huge op­por­tu­nity. In this sit­u­a­tion, I don’t have time to be sweet and say, ‘ Oh, honey, please be more care­ful!’ My re­ac­tion is more like, ‘Pick. It. Up. Now!’ When my em­ploy­ees make a mis­take, I want them to fix the prob­lem quickly and move on. The last thing I or any other boss wants to hear is, ‘ Wahhh, I was just try­ing to be help­ful’. That’s why I of­fi­cially ban­ished cry­ing (from the of­fice). You think I’m a bitch? Fine. Go call your friend and talk shit about me all day.

If women want equal rights in the work­place, we need to start act­ing like equals—mean­ing, no cry­ing.

Give Her the Royal Treat­ment

Though she’s not your friend, your boss is a hu­man be­ing—a lit­tle com­pas­sion helps. Take me, for ex­am­ple. I’m a sin­gle mum, I live and work in the same build­ing and ev­ery

“Treat your boss like a Queen, but also like some­one who

might feel im­pris­oned by

her life...”

minute of my day is spent an­swer­ing the de­mands of some­body else—from my as­sis­tant to my clients to my daugh­ter. Be­cause of this, I usu­ally eat at my desk and rarely get to go out­side.

If you work in a close en­vi­ron­ment and your boss is some­one who keeps her door open, don’t be afraid to pop in oc­ca­sion­ally and say, “I’m or­der­ing food. Can I get you any­thing?” Treat your boss like a queen, but also like some­one with needs who might feel some­what im­pris­oned by her life.

Don’t Be a Gos­sip Girl

When I was grow­ing up in an in­dus­try, we didn’t have haz­ards like Face­book or Twit­ter. So­cial me­dia sites may be an in­creas­ingly im­por­tant tool in PR and other pro­fes­sions—i use FB to pro­mote my clients—but for en­try-level job seek­ers ac­cus­tomed to us­ing these sites for purely per­sonal rea­sons, they are fraught with dan­ger.

If you’re go­ing to post things on­line, you have to be aware of how those mes­sages are be­ing fol­lowed— not only by your boss but also by your co-work­ers. As­sume they’re read­ing what­ever you post, whether on Face­book or your blog or Twit­ter

Re­cently, an in­tern in my of­fice de­cided to en­ter­tain readers of her blog with sto­ries about her very ‘ Devil Wears Prada- es­que’ sum­mer work­ing at my com­pany. ‘In­tern­ing has taken over my life,’ she re­ported. ‘We all work at least 11 hours a day (lie)... in fact, we are not al­lowed to eat in the of­fice, and we sneak food in the back room.’ Lie! Lie! Lie!

When I read the post, I im­me­di­ately called her. ‘Hi, it’s Kelly Cutrone. How’s it go­ing?’ I asked ca­su­ally. ‘Can I ask you what you’re ma­jor­ing in (at univer­sity)?

Oh, re­ally? And are you mi­nor­ing in law, by any chance? No? Well, maybe you should!’

I screamed that she had 15 min­utes to take down that post or I would sue her for vi­o­lat­ing the non-dis­clo­sure agree­ment she had signed, which pro­hib­ited her from writ­ing, about her in­tern­ship.

There’s an­other les­son to be learnt here: the more suc­cess­ful you be­come—in your ca­reer, in your re­la­tion­ships and in life in gen­eral—the more peo­ple will write lies and bad-mouth you, even so­called friends. This has been a harsh pill for me to swal­low at times, but ul­ti­mately, I’d rather be the one liv­ing the life than the one ob­serv­ing and mak­ing com­ments about it.” ■

She couldn’t be­lieve she’d ac­ci­den­tally come in on Sun­day

‘And that’s how you play An­gry Birds!’

Adapted from If You Have to Cry, Go Out­side; And Other Things Your Mother Never Told You by Kelly Cutrone

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