How to say no to your boss’s bad ideas


Powered by article titled “How to say no to your boss’s bad ideas” was written by Sharmadean Reid, for The Guardian on Monday 26th March 2018 11.30 Asia/Kolkata

I have crappy ideas all the time and I welcome people telling me, but most people don’t dare to because they’re intimidated by the boss. They should though – leaders make mistakes.

My terrible ideas often come from being under pressure to make many different decisions across the business. Those who are earlier in their career are usually focused on a specific task or department, so I always say to my team: “You guys are on the frontline, you’re far more knowledgeable than me about this area. Update me on what’s going on.” I see my role as intelligence gathering for the long-term good of the business. If you think my idea is awful, you should tell me!

The best way is to offer an alternative. There is nothing more frustrating than someone who shoots down ideas without supplying their own. Make a case by playing to your unique vantage point – what you know of your customers, what you have learned during your time at the company and the productive working methods you’ve devised.

To increase your advantage and impress your boss, it also helps to suggest a new business theory from a book you have read that he or she has not. Then, once you’ve pitched your alternative method, suggest testing it for a week or two, followed by a meeting to report results. Your idea might not work, but at least you had time to explore, learn and grow.

I had a brilliant boss, Melanie, who allowed me to pursue pointless projects with a strict time frame, knowing I would see my errors and learn from the experience. Once, I tried to get the business to build a boutique curated from its many different product lines but it was impossible to try to change the buying practices at the time. These are the leaders you remember.

Sharmadean Reid is the founder of WAH Nails and © Guardian News & Media Limited 2010

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How to say no to your boss's bad ideas | NORTH INDIA KALEIDOSCOPE

Rajesh Ahuja

I am a veteran journalist based in Chandigarh India.I joined the profession in June 1982 and worked as a Staff Reporter with the National Herald at Delhi till June 1986. I joined The Hindu at Delhi in 1986 as a Staff Reporter and was promoted as Special Correspondent in 1993 and transferred to Chandigarh. I left The Hindu in September 2012 and launched my own newspaper ventures including this news portal and a weekly newspaper NORTH INDIA KALEIDOSCOPE (currently temporarily suspended).