If you’d like to advance up the career ladder, here’s what to say, and what not to:
What to say:
- “What can I do to make myself more valuable to the company?” By asking for coaching, you signal you want to move forward.
- “How can I better help you succeed in meeting your goals?” If you want to be successful, make your boss successful.
- “Over the weekend, I was thinking about you said last week.” When you tell your boss you take your job home with you mentally, you signal your job commitment.
- “I really enjoy my job and I can see working for this company for a long time.” By saying this, you signal you’re loyal and a keeper.
- “What future do you see for me in our organization?” By saying this, you indicate you want to move ahead and are asking your boss to keep that in mind.
What not to say:
- “I don’t deal with financials or spreadsheets.” If you can’t handle financial aspects of management, you limit yourself to a company’s lower tiers.
- “I’m not paid enough to do that” or “you can’t be serious,” when your boss asks you take on a challenging task or to stay late or handle a project. If you want to advance, you have to be willing to do whatever it takes.
- “I’d never want your job.” This statement insults your boss and the work s/he does every day.
- “I’d rather not network.” Those at the higher levels in a company have to be able to connect with those outside the company.
- “I’m always on the outlook for my next job.” This statement signals you’re a short-timer with little loyalty.
- “I don’t care about “x” department.” If you want to move upward, you need to show interest in your organization and be supportive of its success and to be willing to look beyond your immediate position.