Talking to the higher-ups at work is an art. You want to be deferential—but you don’t want to get stepped on. Whether you want to make your 9-to-5 less bored-to-death, or you feel you aren’t getting the benefits you deserve, speak up. We’ll help you stand up to your boss and maybe even move up the ladder.
1. “What is my role?”
Employees perform best when they understand why their roles are important and how they are making an impact, says YouBeauty Happiness Expert and professional workplace consultant Matthew Della Porta, Ph.D. If you’re not sure of your place within the company, ask your boss to clarify your job description and what he or she sees as your main purpose. This will help nurture a sense of pride in your position and make it easier to do your job well.
2. “I’d like to take on more responsibility.”
All too often, workers feel controlled and powerless at their jobs, resulting in apathy and a lack of commitment to their organization, says Della Porta. If you feel that your work isn’t challenging, or if you’re bored all the time, taking on more might be what you need to stimulate your mind and your energies, and make the days feel like less of a drag. Being busy but engaged feels a whole lot better than being underutilized.
3. “What can I do to advance in the company?”
Nobody wants to be in a dead-end job. It’s motivating to know that you have upward mobility within your organization. Inquire about advancement potential and make clear efforts to put yourself in a position to move up. Maybe you can lead a team project, or volunteer to take over for a co-worker who’s going on leave. “It is crucial that someone aiming to take a leadership role be recognized as a leader,” says Art Markman, Ph.D., author of “Habits of Leadership” and YouBeauty’s Psychology Expert.