Every now and then, we all get ideas that leave us buzzing. We’re certain we’ve got a great way to save the company money or reach a new market segment, and all that remains is to convince our higher-ups to give us the green light. Of course, this is easier said than done. New projects take time and money, and at many companies, management isn’t exactly keen on breaking from the status quo.
Luckily, there are things you can do, and in a Daily Muse piece titled “How to Pitch New Ideas to Your Boss,” career expert and Stiletto Dash founder Sara McCord offers some helpful tips for getting your project off the ground. Scroll down to read her three excellent suggestions.
1. Address the Time Issue — When you present your idea, your bosses will invariably start with the question, “How will you find the time?” You’re busy enough as is, after all, but if you can provide them with a plan for adjusting your schedule and maybe diverting time from less essential tasks, you stand a better chance of getting the go-ahead.
2. Mind the Mission — How does your project fit in with the company’s overall aims? That’s another question the bosses are sure to ask, and if you beat them do the punch and pitch your idea in the context of the firm’s mission, you’re halfway there. “A great approach here is to talk about where the idea came from,” McCord writes. “Something inspired you to connect taking a certain course with doing your job better, right? Sharing this insight can help get your boss on the same page.”
3. Be Realistic About Needs — Chances are your project won’t just involve you and your schedule. You might need additional staff and equipment, and while there’s a tendency here to undersell the costs and ask your bosses for minimal support, you don’t want to sabotage yourself. “You may think that the only way to sell a project is to suggest you’ll have a minimum footprint, but that’s not necessarily the case,” McCord writes. “What you really need to show is that your needs are proportionate to your expected impact.”