WORKPLACE / DEC. 20, 2014
version 3, draft 3

How to Convince Your Boss to Let You Do Your Job ‘Your Way’

work freedom
istock

There’s nothing worse than dealing with a boss who won’t let you work in the way you see fit. You believe that your way of doing things is better and will lead to better productivity. Your boss doesn’t agree, and thus you’re in a constant struggle. This isn’t good for your relationship and it isn’t good for getting things done. Yes, you could always ignore your boss and secretly do it your way, but that isn’t an ideal long-term option.

Instead, you have to convince your boss to give you some additional freedom. Let’s take a look at how you can do this.

Why Bosses Want Things Done ‘This Way’

To start with, we have to understand why bosses often want tasks completed in a certain way. For a start, they may well have to listen to orders from above. In big corporations, this is usually a simple case of company policy. It’s difficult to change this, although it’s still possible.

In most cases, bosses want to do things their way simply because they believe that they’re right. Arguing with them isn’t going to do anything. It’s only going to make them more resistant to your arguments and explanations.

Show them the Benefits of Your Ideas

Sit them down and begin by having a frank and objective discussion. Lay out your plans and why you believe they’re superior to the plans your boss wants to follow. Understand that most bosses aren’t sociopaths who always have to be right. They want to make money and they want to improve the company. If you show them the benefits of what you’re doing, they’re more likely to listen to your protests.

Make sure you demonstrate the benefits of your methods in a professional way. Outside of work hours you should work on a comprehensive plan of action that you can print off and show them. Don’t run towards them screaming like a madman. For example, calmly outline how your efforts could reduce the time taken to complete a certain task by ten minutes. Demonstrate how this could add up to hours saved every year.

Take on More Responsibility

If you’re at the bottom of the company, most bosses won’t pay any attention to you. They will assume you aren’t yet experienced or responsible enough to have more freedom. Rather than stamp your little feet and ruin the company atmosphere, sit back for a while. Earn their trust and gain more responsibility over time. Even if you believe you know better, you have to earn the trust of the boss first.

Once they trust you, you’ll find them allowing you more and more freedom. This is the time to raise the idea of doing things in another way again.

Learn to Take a Step Back

Some companies aren’t open to innovation. These are the companies most likely to fold in the highly competitive industries of today. If you can’t get through to your boss, let the matter go. There’s no point risking your job and career because you want to do things your way. Should it bother you that much, perhaps now is the time to begin searching for another job that allows you to innovate.

Overall, raising ideas in the above manner will always do more for you than going to war with your boss. By remaining professional you’re going to show that you’re interested in improving, even if your ideas aren’t accepted this time. Remember, this isn’t about getting ‘one up’ on those above you. It’s about a constant drive towards self-improvement. If you don’t get what you want, step back and try again later.

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