How to tell your boss your not happy at work

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Being unhappy at work is something everyone experiences at some point. Sometimes you outgrow your position or maybe you get a new boss who unsettles you. Telling your Manager you’re not happy is risky – there is always a chance they will think you are leaving. However, talking to your boss can help. If they know there is a problem they may be able to fix it.

Here are some tips on how you could tell your boss you are unhappy:

It’s not what you say – it’s the way you say it

Choose your words carefully, avoid saying “I’m not happy”, be positive say things like “I think I would be of more value to you if you gave me more of X to do” or “I have some ideas on how I can be more useful in the department.”

Plan your meeting with the boss and prepare well

Be sure you initiate the conversation about your happiness in your job. If your boss beats you to it you may have already missed your chance to turn things around. Make a list for yourself of the reasons you feel you are not happy and how they could be improved.

Don’t ask for a change – suggest one

For every issue you bring to your boss, propose a solution. No boss likes to be read a list of grievances from an unhappy employee. If you complain without suggesting a fix, you risk being seen as moany and difficult.

Be positive, but stick to the point

When talking to your boss fight the urge to moan. Communicate clearly and honestly about why the job is not working for you and what support/training/help/change you need to happen in order that you can be more productive in your role.

Be humble and seek help

It is always OK to ask for help, sometimes you need your boss’s advice on how to manage tough challenges – it’s part of their job to help you succeed in yours. Having an open conversation with your boss occasionally can make a big difference to how you feel.

We would love to help you find a new job if that’s what ultimately you want and in that case please submit your CV and we will do our very, very best for you.