May I use 'Good job, sir' to appreciate my boss' work?



Somewhat, I feel it down using this sentence to our seniors, especially our boss.

Good job, sir

Or...for that sake..

Well done, sir

I need natives' input for this. If I'm working for you/under you, and want to appreciate your efforts, may I say those sentences? Will you feel down/offended/ridiculous? Because I'm too small to speak this?

On the other hand, a CEO can certainly say this to another CEO. My basic question is good job/well done is okay when a person in low hierarchy refers to the higher authorities?

Maulik V

Posted 2015-03-25T06:56:13.923

Reputation: 66 188

1It totally depends on the relationship you have with your boss. – None – 2015-03-25T10:20:51.083

I see...this means on the very second day at my office...I cannot say... @δοῦλος – Maulik V – 2015-03-25T10:33:42.537

The time you have been on a particular job with a particular boss will certainly be part of what I meant. But it is also possible you knew or know the guy from some other context (church or bowling team), or worked for him before, or vice versa, so again: it depends on the relationship you have with your boss, and, as a second factor, the personality types involved. – None – 2015-03-25T10:43:47.273

For example, I share a very common relationship with my boss. Just 'hi, hello' etc. And I'm appreciating him for his task. I think it'll be then improper to greet it that way. What say? @δοῦλος – Maulik V – 2015-03-25T11:00:22.080

1This question is not just about word choice but includes all kinds of cultural considerations. I have no idea how the norms and expectations of your culture compare to mine. So I couldn't hazard a guess of an answer. How else might you compliment your boss? But I think asking folks not familiar with the cultural norms you operate within is misguided. – None – 2015-03-25T11:16:32.163

By "feel it down" do you mean it seems to you like a put-down or talking down to your boss? – Brian Hitchcock – 2015-03-26T07:35:23.280

@BrianHitchcock I mean hesitating, not feeling that it's proper... – Maulik V – 2015-03-26T07:36:42.603



In Britain, the expression good job when used by a superior to a junior is considered patronizing. It is not used as a compliment.

I wouldn't use it at all except as a joke, if you knew the person you were speaking to would understand the joke.

A simple well done or nice one is much more acceptable and can be used between people of any position.

In the USA, the phrase good job is used much more often and has no negative connotations that I know of.


Posted 2015-03-25T06:56:13.923

Reputation: 7 717

Well, there is "Brownie, you're doing a heck of a job".

– BCdotWEB – 2015-03-25T13:00:00.850

Interesting! In all my travels to Britain, I've never picked up on this. Good job explaining! :) – Urbanski – 2015-03-25T19:06:22.427