Offer a Suggestion to a Superior • Example Letters, Guides and Samples


Write this letter with the respect due your superior. Be specific. Include details that will convince your superior that the issue is worthy of his or her attention and that your suggestion will help. You may suggest a meeting to discuss the idea in detail. The tone of the letter should indicate more concern than criticism. Don't put your reader on the defensive.

How to write this suggestion letter:

  1. Explain why you are writing.
  2. State your suggestion to correct the problem or improve the situation. Include specific details.
  3. Close with a request for feedback and, if appropriate, a meeting to discuss the idea.

Example Letter #1


I am concerned about my sales team's turnover. For the last year, the average length of employment was just four months. Therefore, if it takes an employee two months to train for the position, we generally get only two months of solid work from that individual.

I have given the problem some thought and suggest that we modify our hiring procedure by raising our experience requirements to attract those with more stable work histories. Also, I feel we should clearly state during the interview that we expect those who we hire to make at least a one-year commitment to the company. I will be interested to hear from you soon. I hope we can solve the problem quickly.

Example Letter #2


After working with the Doe team for two months, I believe I have enough understanding of their project to offer some suggestions that would benefit both the company and our customers. Although our team members have the best of intentions, their focus ignores what we have learned from our customers in the past. Before we go any further, I think we should show the product to some customers to get their reactions. I have some ideas about this that I would like to present to you in person. I am confident you will agree after you hear what I have to say. Are you free sometime Monday morning?

Example Letter #3


The full-time employees have designated me as their spokesperson to suggest a shorter work week. We would like you to consider instituting four ten-hour days in place of the current five eight-hour days. The shifts could be staggered, of course, so the office would still be covered during the usual five days. Enclosed is a copy of an article from the local newspaper featuring companies that have adopted the longer hours for fewer days concept. They report their productivity is up, absenteeism is down, and their workers are happier overall.

Our employees would welcome the change. I have taken the liberty of charting a sample work schedule that could be implemented. A copy is attached. I would be pleased to meet with you if you think this plan has merit. I look forward to your response.

Example Letter #4


The revised management policy is causing anxiety among my department employees who object to undergoing weekly rather than monthly performance reviews. Several employees have expressed concerns that shortening the time period may not produce fair averages of individual or department production. They fear that one poor evaluation may result in sanctions.

Example Letter #5


I have reviewed the plans to move the Doe Subsidiary to Springfield and have some concerns. First, we can achieve the same benefits by moving the subsidiary to Centerville, 400 miles closer to headquarters. Second, the average hourly cost of an employee is $4.00 less in Centerville, resulting in a total savings of at least $500,000 per year. Finally, corporate taxes are lower in Centerville.

I realize that there may be other reasons to move to Springfield that outweigh what I have mentioned. Still, I wanted to express my concerns. I would welcome an opportunity to discuss this with you. Thank you for listening.

Write Your Letter Step-by-Step

1 Explain why you are writing.

Sample Sentences for Step 1
  • Fears about the proposed merger are affecting members of my department, and last week's memo did not lessen their anxiety. Rumors have already created a division between employees and management. Although we may not be affected directly, I fear some of these divisions will continue.
  • I am writing to express concern over the new management policy. In my opinion, weekly reviews cause employees to become defensive and less productive.
  • You asked for suggestions concerning the department's productivity report.
  • As you know, sales have dropped in some areas. I believe this change has to do with the timeliness and quality of our presentations.
  • Last year we received several complaints concerning our health benefits.
Sample Phrases for Step 1
  • affecting my department
  • am writing to express concern
  • anxiety about the proposed
  • as you explained
  • asked for suggestions concerning
  • at the last staff meeting
  • becoming too restrictive
  • believe this has to do with
  • company morale is suffering
  • could not trace
  • deserve more flexibility
  • did little to assuage their fears
  • fear these divisions will continue
  • have an idea
  • if the merger fails to materialize
  • in my opinion it would be good to
  • is still functioning erratically
  • maintain their current feelings of alienation
  • may not be affected directly
  • over the new management policy
  • presentation time and quality
  • received several product complaints
  • rumors are creating a schism between
  • sales have dropped in some areas
  • strongly believe that

2 State your suggestion to correct the problem or improve the situation. Include specific details.

Sample Sentences for Step 2
  • It might be helpful to meet the issue head on. I suggest that management hold a meeting where employees could pose questions and give their input.
  • I suggest we retain employee reviews, but at longer intervals--possibly monthly instead of weekly. In addition, I suggest employee and departmental incentives that would encourage productivity as well as teamwork.
  • In my opinion the report was well done. It gives a comprehensive look at the department, and I am sure management will be pleased with it. My only suggestion would be to include employee attendance statistics, which may be a good indicator of individual productivity.
  • I have an idea to increase sales that I have taken the liberty to explain on the attached sheet. Please review it to see whether it is feasible. I think my suggestion would make our job easier, reduce presentation time, and ensure quality presentations.
  • I suggest we stamp the date next to the packer's initials on each item. In addition to preventing more complaints this year, this practice would help with our record keeping.
Sample Phrases for Step 2
  • am confident it would improve team morale
  • besides preventing similar complaints from
  • encourage employee productivity
  • fits the standard of quality we desire
  • gives a comprehensive look at
  • in addition to what has been done
  • in my opinion it would be helpful
  • maintaining employee reviews would
  • may I make a suggestion that we
  • may be a good indicator of
  • meet the issue head on
  • might be helpful if we were to
  • monthly meetings instead of weekly
  • my only suggestions are
  • omit the section which ranks
  • questions can be posed and answered
  • rather than putting employees on the defensive
  • reduce presentation time from
  • report is well done, but
  • suggest departmental incentives for
  • suggest we revise the current policy to read
  • sure management will be pleased if
  • too subjective to give an accurate picture of
  • using videos in our presentations will
  • working together instead of competing against one another will
  • would like to suggest that

3 Close with a request for feedback and, if appropriate, a meeting to discuss the idea.

Sample Sentences for Step 3
  • I think I speak for all managers when I say that our first concern is producing quality work for our clients. For that to happen, we must have good employee morale. I hope you will give my suggestions serious consideration.
  • I know there would be problems with such a meeting. But I feel that the potential benefits outweigh them. I will look forward to your response.
  • I would really like to take a few minutes in a brief meeting to explain it further.
  • I am sure you are already aware of the problem, but I wanted to let you know of my concern and interest in improving the situation. I want to help if I can. Please let me know what I can do.
  • I believe it would be worthwhile to schedule a brief meeting to see how others feel about this change.
  • I would appreciate the chance to introduce this subject in a meeting.
  • Do you agree that this might solve the problem?
  • What do you think of my idea? I hope I am not overstepping my authority.
  • I will appreciate your considering the idea. I really do think it would solve the problem.
Sample Phrases for Step 3
  • am sure you are aware of the problem
  • bring this situation to light
  • chance to let others understand
  • do you agree that
  • eager for this to happen
  • employee morale is crucial if
  • finding the best solution to the problem is
  • gain the support of
  • having the subject in an open forum
  • hope you will give the above suggestions further consideration
  • hope I am not overstepping my authority
  • hope to hear from you soon on the matter
  • interest in improving the situation
  • know there are problems with
  • look forward to your response to
  • meet with others when
  • only to offer my help
  • potential benefits outweigh
  • present employees' opinions
  • quality work for our clients will
  • really need some discussion on
  • regarding this situation
  • should be weighed against
  • think I speak for all employees
  • this might solve the problem
  • time to explain more fully
  • time to discuss the ramifications
  • wanted to let you know of my concern
  • what do you think of the idea
  • will give my suggestions serious consideration
  • will be supportive of your decision
  • would only take a few minutes
  • would appreciate your comments and suggestions

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