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What to Say, "When"

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in Leaders & Managers,Workplace Communication

A worker repeatedly completes an assignment incorrectly:

“We’ve discussed this assignment many times before. In fact, last week we went through it step by step. You know how important it is that it be completed in an accurate and timely manner. And you know why I have such a keen interest in making sure it’s done right. Given all that, how would you evaluate your performance so far in getting it right? [wait for reply] How do you think you’ll do if you try it again?”

You’re about to make a bold, controversial proposal to your boss:

“You’ve said many times that it’s important for all of us to rethink what business we’re in and come up with new ways to capitalize on our strengths. I’ve taken you up on that challenge. In fact, I’ve taken the seed of an idea that you gave me earlier and cultivated it quite a bit. Now I’ve come up with a proposal that may seem somewhat unusual or even counter-intuitive at first glance. But I’m convinced it deserves a fair hearing, because it clearly advances our organizational goals. Now I’d like your advice: When and how do you think I should present this proposal to ensure it gets treated seriously?”

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