What not to ask the boss at work, even "informally": it can result in embarrassing dismissal

Alina MilsentLife
How to communicate correctly with management

To have an impeccable professional reputation, you must first of all be an excellent specialist. But you shouldn't forget about the moral and ethical side of the issue, which includes the culture of communication.

Even if you have good friendly relations with your boss, some issues should be avoided in the workplace. OBOZREVATEL analyzed what questions are not advised to ask the boss.

Questions about personal finances and income

It is possible and necessary to discuss the working state of financial affairs, but it is not recommended to discuss personal ones. The income and earnings of a boss are his or her personal business. Therefore, you shouldn't ask questions in a style: "How much does your watch cost?", "How much do you earn?", "Have you saved up for a new apartment/car/laptop?", etc.

Debt issues

You should stick to a formal business style of communication with your bosses. This applies to loan and debt issues. It's better not to borrow money from your boss, even if you're a longtime friend. "Can you lend me money?", "Can you lend me some money until payday?" - such questions should be avoided.

Threats of dismissal

"If you don't raise my salary, I'll quit!" - it's unlikely that your boss will like this wording of a proposal to improve your financial situation. If you want to know about your career prospects, ask about it in a calm and balanced tone, focus on your professional achievements, and provide specific data and figures. There is no need to blackmail with dismissal.

Corporate matters

Many things can happen at a corporate party, but you shouldn't focus on the actions of your boss if he or she hasn't broken the law or offended people. Fake karaoke from the boss or his dancing to Serdyuchka should definitely not worry you. So don't ask your boss questions like: "What did you do at the corporate party?", "Aren't you ashamed of your behavior?". Moreover, you shouldn't criticize his music or culinary preferences.

Family matters

Your boss may come to work irritated and angry, but don't ask him or her about his or her problems. Don't mix work and personal life. Don't ask about quarrels with your wife or problems with your children. If you and your boss are very friendly outside of work, he will tell you about it when he wants to.

Amorous affairs

Don't gossip or discuss colleagues with your boss. Spreading gossip about office romances or asking your boss: "who is Olya from accounting dating?" is definitely not worth it.

Asking for a date

If you've liked your boss for a long time and decided to ask him or her out on a date in the evening, think twice before doing so. We are talking about a direct question in the style of: "Shall we go on a date?". If the sympathy is mutual, the relationship will develop naturally, and the consequences of open tactless questions to the boss can be unpredictable.


There are three topics that are not allowed to be discussed at work, especially with management: politics, religion, and personal life. Who your boss voted for in the election is none of your business. So to avoid unnecessary conflicts, don't ask about it.

Relationships, positions, appointments

"How did you manage to get such a high position?" - the wording of the question itself is full of undisguised surprise and a hint that the boss, in your opinion, clearly does not deserve such a position.

It's time to retire

Even if you've been waiting for decades for your elderly boss to retire, don't ask him or her this question. It's up to the person to decide when it's time to retire.

Workplace gossip

It is worth reminding you once again that you should not spread gossip. If you decide to curry favor with your boss and tell him, for example, what your colleagues are saying about him behind his back, think twice. Questions like "do you know what they call you behind your back?" should not be asked.

"Communal property"

If you really want to take someone else's candy, a flower in a pot on the windowsill, a laptop, soap or toilet paper from the office, it's better to wait until they offer it to you. "Can I take home a cake/flower/rug?" - it will sound a little strange.

Me again

If you think that you are being given unnecessary responsibilities, talk about it calmly and reasonably. Don't rush to your boss with accusations: "Why me again? Let him do it!".

Earlier, OBOZREVATEL told you how to compliment a man correctly.

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