It's never easy to share difficult information, but if you've developed a rapport with your direct report, it can make the conversation easier. 10 ways to successfully navigate a difficult conversation with your boss. Don’t throw people under the bus or play the blame game. It goes without saying that tough conversations with your boss are virtually unavoidable. The most important part of having difficult conversations is to do it. Schedule a call with one of our co-founders to share with us how we can help you own your career today. Even if you don’t quite get the result you want, it will almost certainly be better than if you hadn’t said anything. Waiting for your manager to enlighten you with his or her version of your ideal next step is not a strategy. Build your conversation slowly and don’t rush! Difficult conversations: Most people don't like them, but we all need to have them at times. So, you might want to start by admitting some of your own shortcomings. During that time, I have achieved the following for this company: [insert list of accomplishments, big and small, that you have personally contributed to the company]. I believe I deserve a raise due to my hard work and contributions to this company. As an employee, you don’t have all the visibility into why your boss makes the decisions they do. How to successfully have a difficult conversation with your boss Back to video. Ask if this is a good time or if the employee would prefer to select another time and place. While “your bestie at the office” may never share it to hurt you intentionally, they may vent to others in an effort to support you. Difficult conversations are never easy to have, but are especially difficult to have with your supervisor. One of the first steps when approaching your boss with a situation is to state your issue explicitly and give context around the issue. Follow these steps to have a successful exchange: Use “I” statements rather than “you” statements. It is difficult to admit that you have done something wrong in general, much more so when it happens at work. However, making mistakes is just a part of life. Don’t let your emotions dictate your delivery. You want to have your manager’s full attention when you have this difficult conversation, and you need to have it on their time. 6) Be consistent: Being fair or accurate about the issue being discussed ensures your objective and makes the approach consistent. Most of us try to avoid them altogether. So if something is not working for you at work that your supervisor can influence, and it matters to you that it is not working, you will want to find your voice. Finding out the reasoning behind their decisions can help you better understand their thought process. So, you might want to start by admitting some of your own shortcomings. Maybe you need to follow up on something or your boss needs to talk to their supervisor. Make sure that you are calm and rational. Use the time with your boss to bring up any and all issues to make sure you have answers for all of your concerns. Not only will laying everything out on the table will help with your conscious, but it will also help your boss’s too. Hopefully, you won't have to. Talking to your boss can be difficult; especially when it comes to sensitive topics like bonuses or quitting your job. Address the difficult issues. This is your boss, another human being. However, it’s necessary to not only address conflict but build a relationship with your boss. You don’t want to reach your tipping point before going to your boss with an issue. Set up your meeting with your boss at a time where you know you’ll have their full attention, so they can focus on the conversation with you without getting distracted by other work. It’s easy to say things in anger that you may regret later. Otherwise, you run the risk that your boss will interpret a style difference as disrespect or even incompetence on your part. Having difficult conversations with your boss is never easy, but it’s even harder if you become emotional during the discussion. I do enjoy working with this company; I would just like my work to be appreciated appropriately. Always keep eye-contact and lean into the conversation. Your supervisor may be many things, but it is doubtful they are a mind-reader. As always, make sure you have done the groundwork for having difficult conversations. 11. When you are facing that difficult conversation with your manager, do not immediately respond. Perhaps your boss lashed out at you during a heated discussion; or your direct report started to cry during a performance review; maybe your client hung up the phone on you. In case you need to have a difficult conversation with your boss about a problem you have with your co-workers, don’t just state all the things that you believe the co-workers have done wrong. Remember that if you want to be taken seriously, you must behave professionally. Speak politely. After all, you can’t expect your boss to start a conversation about something you’re caught up in, can you? However, sometimes tempers flare during difficult conversations. Looking for another way to reduce stress in your shop? Do your homework. Before you have the conversation with your boss make sure that you take the heat out of your emotions. Some people are having new or stronger mental health issues, while others are just doing their best to make it through a pandemic. Keep to the facts and be direct and upfront. At some point in your career, you're bound to be in a position where you're unhappy at work, and your boss is in a position to help. Otherwise, you run the risk that your boss will interpret a style difference as disrespect or even incompetence on your part. They are a current customer with a positive outcome, despite the initial difficulty behaviors affect others around them the... 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