How to Ask to Work on Another Team's Project - Deepstash
How to Ask to Work on Another Team's Project

How to Ask to Work on Another Team's Project

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Working On Another Project

Working On Another Project

You don't necessarily hate your job, but you’re kind of bored. Your day-to-day responsibilities have become second nature, and you no longer feel like you’re being challenged.

Then an idea smacks you in the face. Someone on the sales team is working on a new assignment you’d love to get your hands on. Or, you’ve been dying to start a company blog and no one’s taken the initiative.

Surely your boss would let you take on an outside project if it was for the good of the company? Here’s what you need to know to get them to say yes.


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Making A Convincing Case

Make the connection for your boss not just to how this project aligns with team or company goals, but how it’ll make you a more valuable employee. What skills will you develop? What relationships will you build? What discoveries could you make? See if anyone else can advocate for you, someone who needs the new project done on time!


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Approaching Your Boss

If you can show it’ll be good for them (and not just good for yourself), you’re more likely to get their stamp of approval. An email can do the initial trick.

Prepare for and address any concerns they may have. What are the counterarguments to getting this project up? How will you defend yourself when they say they’re worried about it taking up too much of your time? Or, conflicting with your other responsibilities? Or, requiring them to manage you more?


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Understand That You Might Get a No (for Now)

There is no guarantee your manager will say yes—even if you did all your homework, even if you made a solid case, even if other people back you up. Your boss has the final say on what you work on, and it’s possible this project would conflict with their expectations for the future.

If you get a no, staying positive and professional may convince your boss to reconsider your request down the road. Here are some phrases to try:

  • “I understand why you disagree with this and appreciate you explaining further.”
  • “I wasn’t aware of those changes and am glad you brought them to my attention.”


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Make the Most of Your Current Situation

Just because you can’t work on something under your boss’ eye doesn’t mean your growth has to stagnate.

Maybe you can’t start a blog, but you can assist your team in writing copy for your company newsletter. Or, instead of being able to help out your colleague on the sales team, you grab a coffee to learn more about the work they’re doing. Or, maybe you take your passions outside your office—signing up for an online class or taking on a side gig.


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Courage is fire, and bullying is smoke.


Want to do something new and exciting at the office but confused on how to approach your Boss?

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