Getting your boss to listen to your idea might seem like a difficult task especially if it’s your first time and you are scared of getting shut down. It is important to remember that all bosses, no matter how difficult they may seem want progress and cutting edge ideas. They may not have these ideas on their own, which is where you come into the picture. Innovation is what sets some staff aside from the others. While some staff may shy away from bringing new ideas because they are scared of being failure as they may be put in charge of the project since the ideas were theirs in the first place.
How to get your boss to listen to your Ideas:
Trying to get your boss to listen to your idea? Try following these steps:
1. Develop an Inspiring Vision of Your Idea
Be fully vast in the knowledge of your idea. Describe it in a way that brings out your enthusiasm, your passion, and commitment. Do not pitch an idea that you do not completely believe in. If you are not a 100% convinced, you cannot convince your boss or anyone else for that matter. Most people have a hard time not listening to someone that’s genuinely fired up about something. And if you’re not excited about it, how can you expect someone else to be interested?
2. Consider your timing.
Employees often act like everything is a life and death crisis. Sometimes companies have major stuff going on: finance issues, a merger or acquisition, a major product launch or customer issue and your boss or management is distracted and can’t be bothered. If you think that might be the case, pick a better time; you may not have more than one opportunity, so do it right.
3. Make sure it resonates with them
All too often, employees think everything’s about them. It’s not. When you want to get someone to listen, you need to position it in terms of what’s in it for them, what’s the big picture for your boss and your company at large. Your ideas and feedback may be great, but if it’s not a priority for the powers that be, it won’t be heard or acted upon. Understand that the management may have a long list of top priorities and an even longer list of responsibilities. Everything else more or less falls in a crack.
4. Don’t beat around the bush
Most senior-level managers and executives aren’t interested in nuance and, these days, nobody has time to listen. No need to run in circles or give unnecessary preambles, just “Hit the hammer on the nail.” So give it to them straight, right between the eyes. Get in, tell them what you think, what you think they should be doing differently or better, answer any questions they have, and get out. End of story.
5. Do Your Homework (Research)
Never pitch an idea to anyone, most especially not your boss without doing proper research. Take the time to think it over, list the pros and cons, and come up with a plan. Check to see if it’s been thought out or tried before, and what were the results. The feasibility of your idea is extremely important. In other words, don’t waste your manager’s time thinking out loud. Do your thinking on your own time and then present a well-developed idea.
6. Test Your Idea
Test your idea with a few trusted co-workers. See if it makes sense to them, ask them to be critical, and provide feedback. Listen, check for their understanding to see how well you’re explaining it. While you shouldn’t let resistance squash your enthusiasm, be prepared to accept that if five people tell you it’s ugly, it just might be ugly. It is important that those you share it with are trusted co-workers because co-workers are capable of stealing your ideas and working on it to make it better or making it their own.
7. Don’t Demand Credit for the Idea
Be willing to let go of the notion that the idea is “yours.” The best ideas are the ones where multiple stakeholders have had a hand in shaping, and you’ve been able to build a broad base of ownership and support. Insisting that you get “credit” for “your” idea will be seen as immature and selfish. Don’t worry; enough people will become aware of your involvement, especially if you keep coming up with good ideas. Don’t expect your name and picture to be inscribed on the idea. Your job is to make your boss look good. As long as He looks good, you will most likely look good too.
8. If Needed, Follow-Up With a More Detailed, Formal Business Case.
Ideas are a dime a dozen, but the execution is what separates the great from the average. This is not a “drop and run.” That is, drop your proposal or business case on your manager’s desk and sit back and wait. Step up and take personal responsibility for making sure the idea gets implemented. That’s a good way to get yourself heard the next time.
9. Stay clear of politics.
It’s an unpleasant truth that most executives won’t admit to employees and some won’t even admit to themselves: in businesses and companies big and small, politics can be a big deal. Whatever you do, don’t point fingers or place blame. Try your best to discuss the issue without throwing individuals under the bus. You’ll come across far more professional, as well.
10. Don’t be difficult or intimidating.
You might not believe this, but a lot of employees are way more intimidating and difficult to deal with than their bosses. If you want to be heard, don’t be angry, emotional, annoying or inflexible. Just because he’s the boss doesn’t make you any less of a pain to deal with. Just get your ducks in a row and try to relax and be yourself. Also, it wouldn’t hurt to have a sense of humor and humility while you are at it.
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