If asked, most employees would likely answer that one of their worst fears at work would be having an argument with their boss.
However, as frightening as this thought is, sometimes it is inevitable.
Your boss may be in the wrong in the way they treat you, or ask you to treat your own staff.
Or, you and your boss could simply disagree on the best strategy for the company, and you decide to speak up.
Remember that a disagreement with your employer may not be altogether negative, that is if you end up winning!
Read this blog post to find out how to win an argument with your boss.
One important thing to keep in mind is that an argument does not mean an all out shouting match.
Instead, it is simply a disagreement over a certain topic, and an opportunity for both parties to present their opinions.
You must remain professional, even if you find yourself getting frustrated, irritated or angry.
To remain calm, cool and collected, take deep breaths, and count to ten slowly in your head.
If the situation gets too much out of hand, excuse yourself and leave the room for a few minutes to cool off.
Make Sure You’re Right
If you are going to go against your boss, you need to make sure you’re right.
This can be easily done for arguments around facts, as you can find examples or proof supporting your claim.
However, if you are disagreeing about a moral dilemma, for example, you won’t be able to use sources to back yourself up.
In this scenario, you may want to enlist the help of your colleagues to support you; however, it may be difficult to find people to stand up to the boss.
Know Your Boss’ Limits
Some bosses truly enjoy sparring with their staff members, encouraging healthy conflict in the office.
Others have huge egos, and don’t want to be called out, even if they are wrong.
If you hope to win an argument with your superior, make sure you know their limits.
Some may find it acceptable to debate about work policies or assignments, but may draw the line at politics or religion.
Others may be okay with hearing your point of view, but may get angry if you ask other colleagues to step in.
You must read your boss’ cues and body language to make sure you’re not going too far.
In some situations, or with certain employers, it is a smarter decision to keep quiet.
If you know that your boss will likely not take your side, even if you are right, you should consider that by speaking up, you may risk losing your job.
Head of Training and Development
Originally published: 31 May, 2016
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