Get Clear Information from Someone in the Know
One of the hardest parts of any job is feeling like you are missing critical data you need. Sometimes that data is product and service-related and other times, it is personnel-related. Lately, it might be economy-related and you might not be sure you will have a job next week.
If you are in a situation where you don't know the guidelines, you don't understand the ramifications of a decision, or you're not sure of the politics, ask someone wise whom you trust (preferably someone higher up.) Explain that you sense there might be something more to a given issue, and that you would like the history of it. Ask if they could please share their perspective.
Then, make your decision from a more informed viewpoint. There are politics in every job, in every workplace. Some are minor and insignificant, others are insidious and unfortunately, critical to your success. Diplomacy and tact are key in every workplace, and thinking rather than reacting will serve you well. When in doubt, ask. It is far better than assuming, which can frequently get you in trouble.
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