When talking to your manager there are a few guidelines which can help you to make your manager aware of your thoughts, comments, questions and any difficulties you are having.
Preparing for discussions
Preparing for these discussions is almost as important as actually having them. You can plan out how you would like it to go to make sure your concerns are discussed.
Write down your concerns
This helps ensure you actually communicate the message you mean to and don’t get side tracked.
Think about possible questions and ways to answer your manager’s questions
Your manager might have some obvious questions and objections so prepare some answers for these because we don’t always perform well under pressure. It’s important to think about possible answers ahead of time. Perhaps write these down.
Approaching the conversation and setting the mood
You can set the mood for the conversation by choosing the setting.
Choose a time when your manager is not too busy
If you can’t find a time, ask to book a time with them.
Ask if they have time to talk right now
Start your comment or question by asking if they have time to talk right now. This allows your manager to decide if they are in the best frame of mood to talk. If they aren’t, then book a time when they can talk.
Responding and self-managing
You may not have control over what they say, but you can control how you handle yourself. This is especially important if they don’t respond the way you expect.
Didn’t get the expected answer or decision?
Don’t flare up. Losing your temper can cause others to become defensive about their decision. Maybe ask questions about why they have come to that decision, you could say something like, “I’m disappointed and need to cool off, so let’s talk about this later.”
Still unhappy with their answer or decision?
Ask them to send it to you in writing and allow yourself time to think. Follow up the conversation at a later date once you have decided on your next steps.
For difficult situations, contact Employment New Zealand for advice.