Work Interruptions (from the Boss!)

Work interruptions from your boss can be frustrating, but it’s important to remember that they’re the boss for a reason. They may not always be correct, but they are in a position of authority, and you need to respect that. Of course, that doesn’t mean that you have to put up with being interrupted all the time. Here are a few tips on handling interruptions from your boss in a way that will be respectful and professional.

Try to stay calm

It can be easy to get frazzled when you’re trying to concentrate on a task, and your boss keeps interrupting you. However, staying calm is essential, and not letting your emotions get the better of you. If you feel angry, take a deep breath and count to 10 before responding. This will help you keep calm and avoid saying something you’ll regret later.

Be respectful

Even if you disagree with what your boss is saying, it’s essential to be respectful. If you’re disrespectful, it will only make the situation worse and damage your relationship with your boss. Instead, try to calmly offer an alternative solution.

Don’t take it personally.

It’s easy to feel annoyed by work interruptions because they don’t think you can do your job correctly. However, this is probably not the case. Most likely, they’re just busy and easily distracted. Try not to take their interruptions personally and focus on completing the task as efficiently as possible.

Here are 10 Things Employees can Say When the Boss Keeps Interrupting

1. I’m sorry for snapping. I’m just really frustrated right now.

Don’t snap or say you’re frustrated! Walk away and calm down.

2. Can you please give me a few minutes to finish what I’m working on?

When it comes to all work interruptions, be specific. “Can we reconnect in 10 minutes? I’m working on our strategy for increasing sales.”

3. I understand you’re busy, but can you please schedule a time to talk with me?

It would be great if we could briefly check in to discuss today’s big priorities.

4. I’m sorry for the inconvenience, but I can’t talk now.

Don’t apologize. Can we reconnect in 10 minutes? I’m working on our strategy for cutting expenses.”

5. What’s the urgency? Can this wait until I’m finished with what I’m working on?

“This morning, we agreed today’s big priority was ABC. Should we push that off until tomorrow, so we prioritize XYZ?”

6. Could you please come back later? I’m in the middle of something important.

“Can we reconnect in 10 minutes? I’m working on our strategy for increasing sales.”

7. Let me stop what I’m doing, and we can talk.

Mindfully get up and leave your workstation. Spaces matter. This visual shows them that their interruption is stopping you from working.

8. Is there something you need from me urgently?

“This morning, we agreed today’s big priority was ABC. Should we push that off until tomorrow, so we prioritize XYZ?”

9. Could you please tell me what the priority is?

It would be great if we could briefly check in to discuss today’s big priorities.

10. What’s your timeframe?

That is fine. But remind them of other priorities and reshuffle them together.

Conclusion

Dealing with work interruptions from your boss can be frustrating, but it’s important to remember that they’re the boss for a reason. Stay calm, be respectful, and don’t take it personally. If you follow these tips, you should be able to handle any interrupts from your boss in a way that is both professional and respectful. Would you like to talk more about this? Please use this link to apply for a free consultation.

Published by Janet Johnson, MBA | Small Business Coach

Janet Johnson is the author of My Money Pivot: An Entrepreneur's Guide to Finding & Making More Money. Before becoming a coach, Janet gained seventeen years of experience in a family-owned manufacturing company. She also trained small business owners in Financial Management and Lean Enterprise through contracts with the State of Connecticut and the Small Business Administration for seven years.

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