How to Salvage a Work Conversation That’s Going Off the Rails
You are a middle manager at a beverage distribution company, and you have an idea for a process change that will save your company up to $100,000 a year.
Your boss is always interested in proposals that will contribute to the bottom line. Her style is fast-paced, hardworking, and demanding.
Getting Your Ducks in a Row
To ensure high receptivity from your boss, you schedule your presentation at an opportune time. You prepare carefully, with a clear presentation and support materials to help her understand the concept.
Your presentation begins well, and your boss is engaged in the conversation. At one point, she asks a cost question, and you had an answer already prepared. Your boss says, “Good, you’ve got the numbers!”
Well … Almost!
However, a bit later, when your boss asks where the company will get the two additional people who are needed to make the plan work, you say, “I thought they could come from our other location.” Now, she reacts strongly. “No, no, we’re not getting involved with our other location. If it hinges on that, I don’t know ….”
Your boss’ receptivity has taken a visible hit. How should you proceed?
You Make the Call
A. Don’t let your boss’ reaction throw you. Offer to fix it and stay on track.
B. Stop the presentation and offer to meet again after revising your plan.
C. Stop to question your boss to work out an acceptable solution.