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What to Do When Your Boss Is Wrong

What to Do When Your Boss Is Wrong

Renee Weisman

We’ve all been there. You’ve been handling a client, solving a problem, preparing a major presentation, planning a critical marketing meeting, and your boss or supervisor disagrees with your approach. The boss tells you how to do it, and you are convinced that it won’t work.

What do you do? Do you cave in and do it his or her way knowing it is going to fail? Do you plunge ahead with your approach, knowing he or she won’t like it?

Neither answer is good for your career or for your business. So, how should a hard-working, talented, and dedicated employee respond?

How you approach this prickly problem has a lot to do with the relationship between you and your supervisor and with your experience base, but there are some basic questions to answer that may help you break the loggerjam. I am assuming in this discussion that there is no harassment issue or other underlying problem and that you both disagree, perhaps strongly, on the right approach.

Question number one: Have I done this before? Is there evidence that would support my position?

Question number two: Is there evidence that supports your boss’s position? If you consulted with other experts in the field (without telling them you are in disagreement with your boss) which approach would they favor?

Question number 3: Can you both be right? Is there some compromise you could make that would take the best of both of your approaches?

After thinking this issue through, you may be more willing to change slightly but what about your boss? Is there a way to get him or her to budge? Yes, if you do it right.

Find out how on the next page →


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