For many, just the thought of communicating with your boss is anxiety-inducing. And since many bosses have a habit of shifting workplace conversations away from the #FreeBritney movement, it’s easy for it to feel like effective communication is impossible. Follow these tips to turn your relationship with your boss from “toxic workplace” to “justice and liberation for the artist who sang ‘Toxic (Hour-Long Remix HD)’”.
Clearly state the goals of the conversation.
When you have something important to say, don’t waste precious time beating around the bush. Did Britney mince words when she got the chance to speak out against her court-ordered conservatorship that’s been in place for nearly 13 years? Explain to your boss that, no, you do not intend “follow up” with the “client” – not while (1) Britney is being denied the right to make even the most basic of choices in her own life, and (2) you’re still a little fuzzy on what your role as a “project manager” actually entails.
Rehearse what to say ahead of time.
You want your boss to feel the same gut-wrenching emotions that the rest of us experienced while listening to Britney detail her abusive conservatorship to the court on Wednesday. Rehearse key talking points in the mirror, all while paying special attention to your body language – you do NOT want to break eye contact at any point while explaining to your boss that Britney’s so-called “team” won’t allow her to remove the IUD inside of her. You should also anticipate the ways your boss may try to redirect the conversation to “projects” or “clients” (again, there’s no real way for anyone to know what your day-to-day responsibilities are). If your boss interrupts you to ask whether your presentation is ready, respond by asking them whether the #FreeBritney movement has fully achieved its goals. No? Then no.
Have a little freak-out.
The fact that your boss is so resistant to engaging with #FreeBritney in the first place is a sign that they’re ill-equipped to handle employees’ emotions. Use this to your advantage by doing what most HR departments refer to as “freaking out a little bit.” Let your imagination run free on this one. This is your time for catharsis. It’s a chance to atone for all the tasteless jokes that were made about “2008 Britney.” It’s your responsibility to show just a shred of the courage that Britney displayed in court this week – all while distracting from the fact that you do not really know what your job is.
With a little practice and preparation, you can avoid all the pitfalls that usually lead to your boss focusing on things other than #FreeBritney.And if none of the above works, just ask your boss to defend your company’s unpaid internship program. Hope they have fun getting out of that one.