4. “Can we talk?”
Sometimes you have the boss from hell. If the devil in the corner office is giving you an unfairly hard time, you can confront her face to face. Don’t do it reactively after one of her attacks, but do it proactively when the water is calm. Be frank, but in a very deferential manner. Remember, you’re trying to get her off your back, not convince her she’s a bully.
Be specific and be direct, for example, “Thanks for meeting with me. I want to talk about [your main area of concern]. Is there a way we could work things out to solve this problem? I hate to ask this of you because you’re the boss, but I am hoping we can think of a good solution together.” You might have to do this two or more times before you see any change.
5. “I need…”
Many Americans are finding that their work-life balance is tipping too far toward the office. Employers have ample opportunities to reach out to overburdened employees—but, Della Porta warns, sometimes you have to ask. Talk to your manager about opportunities for flextime, childcare, eldercare, financial management assistance and maternity leave. You should also be able to rely on your employer to provide information about programs that promote weight loss, smoking cessation and stress management, along with access to a fitness facility on-site or nearby.