How can I handle this boss who doesn’t take anyone’s advice?

Friday April 3 2020


By Jane Muiruri

My boss doesn’t value anyone’s suggestions, and our department has greatly suffered as a result. He keeps asking for ideas but never implements any of them. He always wants things done his way yet he doesn’t have a good understanding of the market because he rarely goes to the field. What should I do about this? Kate

dear Kate, your boss is lucky to have a team that fully understands the market dynamics. I assume you understand your department’s strategic plans. Therefore, ensure that the ideas you present are geared towards achieving these goals, and all future plans of the organisation. Review those great ideas with other team members and agree on the ones to be considered. Only choose ideas that are practical and affordable, and which could have the most positive impact to the business. If your company is struggling financially, do not present ideas that require heavy financing.

Also, ensure that the plans you want to implement are clear and elaborate, and that you can demonstrate how the organisation will get returns. Have you considered inviting your boss to the field so that he can experience the challenges you often endure, and so that he can appreciate the suggestions you offer? Perhaps he has challenges implementing the ideas since he does not have the knowledge required. Being the boss does not necessarily mean that you know everything. Since you understand the field better, you could lead a sales team to assist in the implementation of the ideas.

There are many who shy away from starting any project because of the fear of failure. Could your boss be in this category? Try reassuring him and make him see that you are ready to lead the implementation process.
Find out what other companies are doing, and what lessons you can get from them. Don’t reinvent the wheel.

You can adopt other ideas that have been tried and tested, but which can fit your present situation. Find out why he has been rejecting your ideas. You might be shocked to learn that you only need to change the presentation style or approach for him to be more responsive.

Jane Muiruri
Senior HR Manager,
Nation Media Group