How To Present an Idea to Your Boss

Presenting an idea to your boss is not an easy venture, especially if your superior happens to be not so keen on hearing what the subordinates have to say. The following pointers should help you do the task.

  1. Determine how best to approach your boss. In many instances, good managers do not listed to subordinates because of how they are approached. Be observant and know the factors that will get your superior’s interest. Knowing what these points are will help you prepare what you need to hold that interest throughout the time you are conveying your proposal otherwise you might only get rejected after your very first sentence.
  2. Do sufficient research before you approach your boss. Even if you are fortunate to have a manager who takes time to listen to his team, it is a waste of time to present an idea if you are not equipped with the information to support it. Gather all the information you need to illustrate the reliability, accuracy, and efficiency of your proposal. If you have to show graph, tables, surveys, PowerPoint presentation and the like, do so. A well researched idea will help you answer all the questions that your boss might throw at you. Your superior will also appreciate that you are not only presenting subjective ideas but also suggestions based on tangible information.
  3. Determine how to drive your boss’ decision. Bosses know what they are doing. They are smart and perceptive among other things otherwise they will not be where they are. That said, it could be very difficult to present a proposal to a boss who is not particularly receptive to new ideas. Thus if you are given the time to present your suggestion, your next aim should be to get a positive feedback. The key to achieving this is to make your idea his idea. Once you get your manager’s attention and you find him willing to discuss your proposal, take time to hear your manager’s insights. Acknowledge how good his concept is and make him feel that the idea you are presenting is actually his in the first place by allowing him to validate your presentation then explain that it was taken out of what he said. How you go about it is a strategy that you should learn and prepare for. 
  4. Determine how to respond to your superior’s decision. While you may think your proposal is great, keep in mind that your boss may have a different perspective on it. If your concept does not do well on your manager’s assessment, respect his insights and take note of the factors that contributed to the failure of your proposition. If your boss can neither identify nor explain why the idea is unacceptable, do not push. Be thankful for the time and do not take the rejection personally. You can present the same idea next time using another strategy and convincing tactics.

Another essential element you should consider if you are to present an idea to your boss is the timing. Determine the right time to talk to him instead of chasing your boss at the most inopportune instances. Schedule an appointment with your manager if possible. That way he is at his convenient time, and you also have the ample time to get prepared.


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