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Working Conditions Incompetence Communication Persuasion Furniture

I just changed offices, and my new one needs more light. I asked my manager if I could bring in a small lamp for my desk. He said he does not want the clutter, and all of the lighting meets the required minimums. How can I change his mind?

It sounds like you are dealing with a manager from the Dark Ages. He did not adequately investigate or discuss this matter with you, and he took no productive steps to resolve it. Even if the lighting in your office meets the required minimums, his actions do not.

Although it is legitimate for a manager to express concern over clutter interfering with the employees’ work areas, a small desk lamp does not really fall into the clutter category. If you were asking to bring in an entire stuffed animal collection, that would be another matter. Besides, some personalizing of one’s work area can have a positive impact on an employee’s overall comfort level.

The best way to change your manager’s thinking is to find out what he is thinking, and then try to let him see how he can win with increased lighting in your office. If you discuss this with him, be sure to include terms such as, “increased productivity,” “improved safety and health,” and other expressions that can have a positive emotional charge for him.

You might learn that he is concerned about possible electrical problems associated with plugging in a lamp. If so, suggest a battery-powered desk lamp, especially one of the small and affordable models.

When all is said and done, hopefully he will see the light. And you will, too.

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