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Kid Tactics for Your Boss

What you've learned as a mom can help you at work, says Chris Komisarjevsky, coauthor of Peanut Butter and Jelly Management (and dad of nine!):

Make the rules clear. Just as you define limits for your child's behavior, establish guidelines for employees  -- when the report is due and the form it should take  -- so they know what it takes to be successful. Do the same for bosses and clients; be clear on what you can deliver, and when.

Don't overreact to mistakes. Your child messes up all the time; that's how he learns. It's no different for you or your employees. Acknowledge mistakes, learn from them, and then move on.

Don't compare coworkers to one another. Just as you value your kids' individuality, respect the different backgrounds and skills of those in your workplace. The more you appreciate individual strengths, the more you can take advantage of them.

Know when to let go. As with your child, you have to decide if an employee is ready for more independence. Can he call on a client alone? Are you ready to request a challenging assignment?

Stay calm. At home or at work, remaining steady when something goes wrong sets the right tone.

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