1

This happens with me many times that I find my boss talking to my colleagues in door ways or in smoking zone and I am also going that way. Situation is that from what I see, he is not noticing me and continuing with his conversation, at this point should I greet my boss and disturb the conversation?

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  • 3
    Could you try to greet your boss and not disturb the conversation? Like saying "Good morning" while you are walking past?
    – gnasher729
    Jun 7 '16 at 8:26
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    Why just your boss? If you are going to greet him in a conversation with your colleagues, surely you should greet all of them...
    – colmde
    Jun 7 '16 at 8:26
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    After several decades of life, I still don't know what to do about situations like this...ho hum!
    – user45590
    Jun 7 '16 at 10:12
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    Is this the first time of the day you have seen your boss? You don't need to acknowledge your boss every single time you see him(her), especially if they are already talking to someone else
    – cdkMoose
    Jun 7 '16 at 16:21
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    In this situation, I usually just wave. Jun 7 '16 at 20:40
15

Depends on culture, but I'd say don't disturb him. If you make eye contact, do a smile and nod.

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    In France, you should be able to greet him without being impolite. But yeah, depends of the culture.
    – Gautier C
    Jun 7 '16 at 7:43
  • @Fredrik, I am fine with you suggestions. But another situation is which I forgot to put in question is we made eye contact when I was far away and now while I am approaching him, he is no more looking at me rather continuing the conversation as if I am not there. Should I greet him now?
    – dev gr
    Jun 7 '16 at 7:49
  • @devgr did you smile and nod ?
    – Gautier C
    Jun 7 '16 at 8:02
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    @devgr hum... you should have... Let's say it was a bad day, but next time you make eye contact with him, smile & nod, if he nods back, that means he cares about greetings, if not, don't mind it, he doesn't really care about it if he is busy with another person.
    – Gautier C
    Jun 7 '16 at 8:57
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    I am convinced by the statement 'If you make eye contact, do smile and nod'.
    – dev gr
    Jun 7 '16 at 9:32
10

What do others do?

It comes down to the culture at the company, which among numerous factors depends on country, business sector, company size, the age and personality of people - and other factors such as how close you are to the boss and the 'seriousness' of the conversation.

Another approach could be taking the opposite view: What is the consequence of you NOT greeting the boss? Would it be considered polite and non-interrupting or weird an unapproachable?

In a Danish context, I always greet when not doing so would seem weird.

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    I agree that it all comes down to the local culture of the organisation. For example, at my workplace, if you walk past any group of people for the first time in the day, and they're having a discussion in a public space (corridor, staff kitchen, boardroom), you say "g'day" or "morning".
    – HorusKol
    Jun 7 '16 at 23:26
  • I got your and morsor's point. I agree that it depends upon culture and current situation. I was concerned with disturbing somebody when he/she is not noticing you. At this point I feel an imaginary wall is there which I cannot pass through and greet him/her. I am trying to improve myself.
    – dev gr
    Jun 8 '16 at 9:43
0

if you make eye contact, Smile,thumbs up and continue onto where you're heading. I have the same thing numerous times each day.

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    I'm not sure how thumbs up is perceived in all cultures. It may be considered too informal for a business environment.
    – JasonJ
    Jun 8 '16 at 15:52
0

As you described it, it's a quite awkward situation, so just keep an eye on him while you get closer to him. If he doesn't look at you, or seems too busy to talk to you, don't interrupt him, handshake or anything. Just keep walking and say "hi" or "good morning" as you're passing by him. This way if he hears you, he won't think you ignored him, and if he wants to talk with you, he will be the one who will have to call you. If he doesn't hear you, at least you won't interrupt him and you won't risk looking impolite.

If he sees you, depending on your culture, just smile and nod/wave him/whatever is a quick salutation

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