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No matter what your relationship is like, there are some things you should never, ever say to your superior. Unless your boss is your father or wife.
Here are 5 to remember:
1 - "My daughter is selling Girl Scout cookies. Would you like to buy some?"
Your boss probably loves Thin Mints just as much as you do. That doesn't mean he should be solicited as a potential customer for your pint-sized salesman, says HR consultant Tiffani Murray, author of Stuck on Stupid: A Guide for Today's Professional Stuck in a Rut. "Perhaps they will think that the employee will 'return the favor' by working harder, staying late or picking up the slack when needed in exchange for the purchase of that box of Thin Mints," says Murray. Of course, if your boss politely refuses, you might resent it -- or feel embarrassed for asking.
2 - "I think so-and-so is out to get me. Don't you?"
Most personality conflicts need to be handled by the individuals involved. "Your boss doesn't want to be a playground monitor," says Purdy. If the conflict is affecting aspects of a project, bring those specific issues to your boss, instead of a vague suspicion that someone wants to make you look bad. At best, it'll make you look insecure. At worst, you'll look paranoid.
3 - "Is it okay if I take a personal day because my grandmother died?"
If this is not true, don't say it. Elaborate sick day excuses are a big risk in the world of Twitter andFacebook, says Purdy: "It's more and more dangerous, in our increasingly connected world, to 'play hooky' from work by telling your boss you're sick or that you have a funeral to attend. If you are at all social-networked, it's too easy to find out the truth."
4 - "Does it really matter if this gets done?"
If you ask if you're being given busy work, you're questioning the judgement of your boss. "A better question is 'Where should this fall on my list of priorities?' In this way, if it is less important the boss will convey that as he or she ranks your to-do list," says Murray.
5 - "If you don't _____, I'll quit. Understand?"
Ultimatums don't work well for many relationships, whether it be a marriage or a work partnership. "You can lay out what you need to your boss, but ultimatums leave out the room for compromise. Even if you get what you asked for, you'll be seen as an untrustworthy employee from now on," says Purdy. Leave the "Q-word" out of the conversation--unless you truly are ready to walk.
Have you ever heard someone say something crappingly stupid to a boss?