One of the best ways to ensure your day-to-day work life is pleasant and remains on an upward path is to get- and stay – on your boss’s good side.

It sounds like a simple thing to do, yet a surprising number of people can’t seem to get it right!

Often, they’re unwittingly saying or doing things that communicate to the boss that they’re incompetent, uncooperative or immature – qualities NO boss liked to see in an employee!

Staff at News UK will want to be on the right side of their boss today as Rebekah Brooks returns as chief executive. She faces some tough choices over the future direction of News UK, formerly News International. The outlook for traditional newspapers – including News UK’s Sun and Times – has looked bleak for some time, with online revenues failing to compensate for declining physical sales.

And in the past few years, the online sphere has also seen a structural shift away from individual news websites, to the sharing of news stories via Facebook, Twitter and other social media sites.

So if you don’t want to be the employee who gets on the wrong side of Rebekah Brooks or any other boss, avoid saying these 5 things to them:-

1.“I’m too busy”

You may well be swamped with work – running late with deadlines, working long hours, your inbox is overflowing and your desk is creaking under the piles of paper marked as urgent.

What your boss really thinks:-

–        Good, I’m glad you’re not sitting there with nothing to do!

–        But what are you actually working on and why exactly are you so busy?

–        Can you prioritise? Are you working on important stuff or wasting your time on trivia?

Your boss doesn’t want to hear you whining about being too busy- they really want to hear about the results you are achieving.

So if you are genuinely feeling that your workload is getting out of hand, talk to them about the impact this is having on you getting the results you could achieve. They’ll be far more interested in hearing about that!

2.“I didn’t have time”

You haven’t completed something your boss asked you for, or expected from you.

What your boss really thinks:-

No, you’ve had all the time in the world to do this you’ve just chosen not to give my task any priority!

– So what have you been working on instead that was more important than this?

– And why haven’t you told me before that there was a problem here?

– Can you prioritise? Are you working on important stuff or wasting your time on trivia?

If your boss asks you or expects you to do something, it makes good sense to allocate enough time to get on and do it. However, if you don’t agree with the task or immediately know you will struggle to get it done with your other commitments, then the onus is firmly  on you to say so and negotiate this with your boss – not to take it on and then blame your failure on a lack of time.

An excuse is an excuse, no matter how valid it may be. But at the end of the day, the work didn’t get done and that’s what your boss cares about.

3.“It’s not my job”

When your boss asks you to do something that’s not in your job description, understand first of all that he already knows about your job description. After all, he is your boss!

But it’s not unusual for bosses to now and then ask their people to take on certain tasks that go beyond their job description. It may be that another department or person that’s better able to do the job is overloaded or understaffed at the moment – your boss has just decided they’d like you to do it!

In your boss’s eyes, “It’s not my job” does not suggest the mind-set of a team player – but rather someone who is simply ticking the box – doing the minimum required to collect a salary and unwilling (or even scared) to stretch beyond their comfort zone.

There are times when we all have to do a little more to support others, even if it’s not specifically part of our job description. That’s what it means to be part of a team. Ultimately, at some point in the future, your team mates will do the same for you.

Also, keep in mind that your boss wouldn’t ask you to do something outside your job description if they didn’t think you were capable – it shows their belief in you. Show your boss that you’re willing to go that extra mile. Stay positive, and do what has to be done.

4.“I’ll try”

This implies that there’s the possibility of failure. You can dress this statement up all you like saying things like, “I’ll give it my best shot” or “I’ll do it when I can” – but your boss will see right through the disguise.

These “I’ll try” responses are actually an admission that the task at hand is a daunting one, and you don’t want to make any commitments. In other words, “I’ll try” is too safe.

Your boss doesn’t want to hear any non-committal safe answers. What he or she wants to hear is “I’ll do it” and they want to hear it said with conviction.

Think of it this way: taking on challenges positively not only puts you in a good light with your boss as a ‘can do’ person, but it also helps you grow professionally.

5.“You’re wrong”

“I don’t agree with you.” These are the words no boss really wants to hear from one of their people. It’s not only blunt and tactless, it’s not very respectful of their position and the decision they’ve already reached.

It doesn’t matter if you’re talking one-to-one or in a group meeting (although the latter would certainly be worse), you just don’t say this, not in this way!

Of course, every now and then your view will differ from that of your boss but you don’t have to be so direct about it. While she or he may welcome a different perspective, there is a proper way to express your view.

So when you find yourself disagreeing with your boss, say instead, “The way I see it…” or “My thinking is…” or “How about  if…”

Note that there is no word in these phrases that indicates your disagreement. What is indicated is an expression of your opinion, which any good boss will welcome and be open to discuss.

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