There’s probably been a time where you’ve left a meeting where your boss assigned you a new project to work on. While it’s ideal that your boss provides you with all the information you need to complete your assignment, that doesn’t always happen, and it can leave you feeling confused and unclear about some of the aspects. There are four questions that you can ask your boss when receiving a new task so that you don’t feel like you’re destined to fail. It also shows interest and initiative when asking questions.
There is a massive difference between an assignment being due by the end of the day and one that has a deadline of next month, or this time next year. If you assume that every assignment you receive is due immediately, you are quickly going to get overwhelmed and feel the pressure of the workplace. You also don’t want to drop everything that you are working on because you received a new task, though treating it like it isn’t urgent might put you in a bad situation. Clarifying the exact due date of your assignment is going to ensure that you complete it on time, without having to push everything else to the side and cram to get it finished.
Should I Be Speaking to Anyone Else About the Project?
This question is great to prepare you for the project you are going to be working on. It’s possible that previous colleagues have worked on the assignment in the past, so it’s helpful to know if you need to pick up at a specific spot, or if there are methods that haven’t worked. It also lets you know if you need to collaborate with other co-workers and divide the workload evenly. Additionally, asking that question ensures that you get any approval that is required. As an example, if you need to write a statement for the company, it’s likely that you need to run it past public relations or communications first.
Why Am I Doing This?
Asking “why am I doing this?” isn’t as snarky as it sounds. Understanding the purpose of your assigned task is going to help you put more value to the project, and it can provide essential context that you can use when choosing the direction to go in. The more information that you have about the goal of the assignment, the better off you are going to be. As an example, if you need to create a training outline for a specific program or project, finding out why is going to assist you with choosing the best methods of training for that program or project.
What is Expected of Me?
It’s essential to understand what your boss expects of you when you are assigned a new project. It’s very likely that there are aspects of that assignment that is on your boss’ to-do list, and it isn’t very time efficient to complete parts of the project that your boss is in charge of. Communication is vital when working on an important assignment. It also helps to protect you from stressing out and missing critical components. If you only work on the skeleton of the program because you assume that your boss is taking care of everything else, you might find yourself in hot water.
It is nice when your boss gives you everything you need from the beginning. However, there’s a chance that you might not have a thorough, detail-orientated boss; even if you do, not everyone is perfect, and they might have a lot going on. When you are assigned a new project, it’s typically part of your responsibility to ask the right questions and ensure you have the information and tools required to complete the task. The four above questions can help with setting yourself up for success.