Improving social acumen key to pleasing your boss

If you want to prove yourself as a "doer" before your boss, working on your social acumen is very important, a new study has found.

IANS| Updated: Dec 05, 2014, 14:02 PM IST

Washington: If you want to prove yourself as a "doer" before your boss, working on your social acumen is very important, a new study has found.

Those who rely on personal initiative alone will quickly be labeled as isolated troublemakers, it adds.

Personal initiative has to be combined with social acumen in order to bring about success.

"This also becomes clear in job advertisements, because 87 percent of employers demand these proactive skills from their applicants," said Andreas Wihler and Gerhard Blickle from the Institute of Psychology at the University of Bonn and Florida State University (USA), respectively.

For the study, the international team of researchers surveyed a variety of occupational categories.

While personal initiative is an absolute requirement for a professional career for self-employed professionals and entrepreneurs, employees are not always met with approval from the boss if they take the reins on their own.

Anyone who does not do this is frequently considered to be a troublemaker, found the study.

"An atmosphere conducive to personal initiative led to additional positive economic results only if the person has a marked degree of social acumen," added Wihler.

"This consequently means that appropriate identification of favorable opportunities and the ability to adapt to the respective situation are important preconditions for skillfully putting personal initiative behaviours into place," Blickle said.

The results were published online in Journal of Management.