One of the most intractable problems for today’s young professionals is how to ‘challenge’ their superior when there are necessities to express their concerns or advices. But is “challenging” your manager really a terrible thing? How to question your manager in a way that won’t put your job security into risks?  Please listen to this week’s Career Builder, here Robert Parkinson, Founder and CEO of RMG Selection – a leading Asia focused executive search business, will share his thoughts about the topic “Challenge” your manager’.

  1. Why it’s not terrible to challenge your manager?
  • The best thing about questioning your manager is that it helps you to clarify for yourself and avoids misunderstanding between you and your boss.
  • Building rapport is especially important in Chinese society. And giving useful advices to your manager could actually boost your relationship with your manager if you did it in the right way.
  • Nobody could claim oneself to be perfect. The definition of successful manager is someone that is always seeking the opportunity to get to know the truth and the chances for improvements. As a manager, you will always need the necessary advices and aids to maximize the team efficiency and let yourself become a better leader. You can be helpful to your manager by questioning him or her.
  • A wise leader does not necessarily to be the one who is best in the field, but an expert who is good at accepting different points of views and absorbing the essence of other employees’ best advices. Consequently, there is no need to be afraid of doing such thing.
  1. What are the tips for young people to challenge the seniors without having the risk of losing their job?
  • Avoid uncertainty and always make sure that your ‘challenge’ has detailed suggestion which could actually help your manager to make improvements based on your advice. You don’t come to your supervisor with your angry complains without giving any constructive advice.
  • Communication skill is really essential in China, where the notion of ‘Face’ plays a crucial role in the business world. Make sure to communicate with your manager in an indirect tongue to minimizing the potential embarrassment. It is wise to make your suggestion focus on the problem you are questioning rather than the person who caused the problem.
  • Try to communicate with your manager in a private environment where no one else is around.
  • Have a good judgment of what kind of boss you are having. The significance of knowing your superior’s managing style is even more important in China.
  1. So what should I do when I am having a manager that is not reasonable?
  • There is always plenty of promising career opportunities for smart people. Leaving the job when you cannot see any potential improvement of the status quo is a considerably good move.
  • Often you will not meet the serious standard to change the job. A compromised way of questioning this kind of boss is to find a good timing and a buffer zone.
  1. As a manager, how to get useful suggestion with better ideas from your employee?
  • Have trust in your staffs
  • Do not take any rational feedback personally. Asuccessful manager should encourage feedbacks from his or her employees constantly. It is important to have a good company culture and not to let your staffs fear to question.
  • Do not suppress the young people in your company. Compare with senior staffs, the new graduates and young employees are often less biased and do not have the baggage from previous working experience. The encouragement for them to speak out is the spirit for them later to delivery really constructive advices. Simultaneously, the space you gave to people to speak could also bring you a lower turnover rate by increasing their commitment to the company.

Listen to this episode of Career Builder on CRI: http://english.cri.cn/7146/2015/08/05/3481s890421.htm