Do you have any questions for me?
No matter what industry you work in or what stage of your career you are at, it is always good to show initiative and identify the expectations your superiors have of you. It shows you are serious about your role, the success of the team and the advancement of the company.
At a time when performance appraisals are taking place you want to be better than “good” in a review. We want to be standout employees that managers are excited to potentially promote and reward.
One thing you can do to separate yourself is to ask good questions. Here is a list of questions you can ask your manger at each stage of the year to ensure that you are front of mind when it comes to promotion and progression.
12 Questions to Ask Your Manager in 2020
What to ask: What are the 3 to 5 key objectives you have for me this year, how will you measure them and how will this complement the company’s goals?
Why to ask: You probably had an employee review in December. However, this question indicates that you want to hit the ground running this year and understand what is expected.
What to ask: I just wanted to follow up on the meeting we had last month. Considering my performance last year and the goals you have set for me this year, what advice, if any, do you have for me to exceed this year’s goals?
Why to ask: This is an excellent opportunity to continue reflection on behaviors and areas of focus that can be enhanced to solidify your upward mobility and goal achievement.
What to ask: The fiscal quarter is drawing to a close. What measurable progress can you see me making against the key performance indicators we set for my 2020 goals? Are any course corrections required?
Why to ask: It is dangerous to assume you are doing very well because you are receiving no feedback from your supervisor. Always get your supervisor’s perspective on your progress to achieving the set KPIs and goals.
What to ask: In January, we discussed the company’s 2020 goals and vision. Is there any shift or change in the milestones or goals to achieve that vision? If so, will that affect my set goals and how?
Why to ask: This question shows an aptitude for leadership and that you care about the big picture of the company’s success.
What to ask: As the third quarter draws closer, what resources are available that you think would positively affect my personal and professional development? What resources can the company provide me with to help me meet or excel at the goals we have set?
Why to ask: Professional development may be in your company’s budget for the year, but it may not be scheduled for a particular time. If you do not ask for it, you may not receive any professional development resources.
What to ask: We spoke at the end of the first quarter about my progress towards achieving the more easily measurable goals you set for me. How would you rate me compared to my peers regarding soft skills such as teamwork, discipline, trust and accountability? How do I compare to the top performers on the team?
Why to ask: This question shows incredible emotional intelligence and a high level of maturity. Your supervisor will be very impressed that you are requesting this type of feedback.
What to ask: What updates can you give me on how the company is executing the goals and vision it set forth for 2020? Is there anything further I can do to help the company accomplish its mission?
Why to ask: Your company may be great at planning goals, but management may not be the best at communicating it to the rest of the staff. By asking about the progress the company has made shows you truly care about the success of the company.
What to ask: As a member of your team, I want to do everything I can to help you and the team succeed. What else is there that I can be doing as the third quarter nears its end? What is your biggest problem and what can I do to help solve it? I am happy to help with any additional tasks but would like to know how my work flow priorities and the metrics of my performance.
Why to ask: This question continues to show you are committed to leadership and the success of your team.
What to ask: As we prepare for the fourth quarter, would it benefit me to make any course corrections in my priorities or work or am I on the correct path? Given my current trajectory, do you think I will achieve my goals by the end of the year?
Why to ask: You have approximately four months until your year-end employee review. You still have plenty of time to make any necessary corrections to your behavior and priorities to impress your supervisor. This question also forces him or her to focus on your progression.
What to ask: I believe I have been proactive in requesting constructive criticism and feedback, but I also wanted to check on you. How are you doing? Would you mind if I gave you feedback?
Why to ask: This question may be hard to ask, but this is the most important question you will ask all year. It shows you value a two-way relationship with your supervisor and will be highly appreciated. Prepare specific constructive criticism to help your supervisor develop professionally.
What to ask: While I continue to focus on closing out the year, helping the team succeed and accomplishing the goals we set out at the beginning of the year, I am beginning to consider next year as well. What can I begin to do, continue to do and stop doing to be a better team member?
Why to ask: This question allows your supervisor to advise you of clear, actionable steps you can take to meet or exceed all of your goals for the year.
What to ask: As we chart my course for next year, I want to understand how they align with the company’s plans. What training and other resources will be available to me to help me be a critical contributor to the team’s success? What cross-training can I complete to help me in my role and other team members in their roles?
Why to ask: This question shows you want to get a head start on next year and demonstrates your commitment to helping your team and company succeed.
Being proactive is the best thing you can do to grow and develop personally and professionally. It will go a long way in earning your supervisor’s trust and respect and may lead to a promotion or raise in the future. For more advice on how to take your career to the next level, contact us today.