When you’re overloaded, you have two choices: work more stressful, 12-hour days or create a plan to tell your boss that enough is enough. Here’s how to stand up for yourself with tact and professionalism:
- Make a list. Put all of your tasks down on paper and include their deadlines.
- Create time estimates. Estimate the amount of time each project will take. Point out tasks and deadlines that overlap, and show when there aren’t enough available hours to complete both.
- Have a meeting. Give a copy of your list to your manager and let him or her know that you are overloaded. Ask for a solution, such as reassigning some of your items to others, adjusting deadlines or ceasing new assignments for now.
- Plan for the future. Agree upon a plan for the future. Perhaps a weekly check-in would make your boss more aware of what’s on your plate.
— Adapted from “How to Tell Your Boss You Are Overwhelmed,” Cynthia Measom, www.work.chron.com.