How to Have an Effective Conversation with Your Boss

Trying to talk to your boss can be uncomfortable and awkward. But if you know the right way to approach your superiors, you can survive the encounter and even thrive at office.

Effective conversation with your boss is essential for many reasons. If you want to ask for a raise or talk about another colleague’s behavior, talking effectively can increase your chances of success.

Here are 4 tips that will help you feel more confident next time you encounter your boss.

1. Notice how your boss communicates with you. Does he/she prefer to use email, phone or direct contact with employees? Follow him/her example. If he/she prefers to email you about minor issues, then follow suit. If major issues, such as those involving huge amounts of money are usually discussed in person, then do the same.

2. Speak only what you know. If you want to relay information, be sure you have researched it thoroughly. If you are requesting further information from someone, don’t waste their time finding facts you already have. Be clear on their specific task.

3. In private, rehearse what you want to say to your boss.

4. When speaking to your boss, use qualifying words, such as “perhaps” and “maybe,” rather than absolute words, such as “always,” “every,” “all the time” and “never.” Speaking in absolutes can raise a person’s defenses and cause resistance.

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