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5 tips for asking your boss to invest in your development

  • Feb 19, 2021
  • Morgan Milbradt
Ask your boss email Ask your boss email

In Quint Studer’s book Hardwiring Excellence, he wrote that you could tell the values of an organization by examining its commitment to development. Research consistently states that leaders of all levels appreciate development.

Why? It shows them that both their supervisor and the organization care about them. It also helps them be better on the job.

But what can you do if your supervisor does not offer opportunities to develop you? Well, one of our favorite sayings is that if you don’t ask, the answer is always no.

Here are a few best practices we recommend:

  1. Share your commitment to development: Ask to meet with your supervisor and share that you are committed to your growth and development within the company. Be sure to value their feedback and make an effort to not be sensitive to the feedback you get. That creates a more open channel of communication and development.

  2. Try to ask early: When asking your boss about attending, remember that timing is key. Be sure to give your employer ample time to review your request.

  3. Remember your boss’ “what:" What’s the “what,” you ask? Every boss has a few things that mean more to them than anything else. Ex: Getting straight to the point, quick turnarounds, etc. Keep these things in mind when making the ask to attend.

  4. Play to your boss’ interests: Is there a topic he or she has been really into lately? Is it building a great onboarding system? Maybe it’s hiring the right people? Highlight how the training opportunity will help tackle those dreams they've been thinking about achieving.
  5. Share the ROI: Most organizations will happily invest in something if they know what the return on that investment will be. What skills will you learn to help you do your job better? How will this affect the company’s bottom line?
  6. Follow-up: The party doesn't stop once the training is complete. Never underestimate the value of a thank you note! It goes a long way in showing your boss that you're grateful for their investment in your growth. Share with your boss your takeaways - what did you learn? How do you intend to take action? How will this action improve the company? These are both habits of high-performers that will increase your chances of being approved next time!

The truth is, only YOU know why a certain development opportunity is a great fit for you and the best practices for communicating that with your boss. However, feel free to use these email templates to get you started!

We love being a part of your development journey. If you have any questions or thoughts, email us at

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