How to Convince Your Boss You Need an iPad

business on the ipadNeed an iPad. Really need an iPad? If you’re convinced that the show will not go on unless you get full behind-the-scenes access to your very own iWonderful, but you’ve already spent your yearly tech budget on the full rainbow of iPod shuffles, there is only one thing left to do. You must convince your boss to buy you an iPad.

1. There’s an app for that – and it’s cheaper. Hey boss man, you know that meeting you’re sending me to? I need a laptop to get anything done there. Five hundred bucks, easy. You say you want me to have software on the laptop? Tack on a few hundred bucks—per title. Or, shop in the App Store, where 20 bucks is exorbitant. Microsoft Office: $400+ easy. Office 2 Pro: $7.99. Is every feature replicated? Of course not! But it will do what you need it to, where you need to do it. For the 99% of people who do the heavy lifting back home and take field notes in the field, the price difference between “Software” and “Apps” is a slam dunk.

2. Plan a demo on the iPhone. Load your iPhone with app versions of whatever publications are important to your company. Open your company’s website and make sure your mail is synched to your work e-mail address, rather than your hotmail account. Download an app like MobileRSS Pro and subscribe to industry news feeds and competitor’s websites. Then, tell him to imagine the iPhone big enough to browse a whole page with no pinching and spreading, and smart enough to let you grab what you need and import it into serious productivity apps. He’ll start to come around.

3. Play to your strengths. Flying? You can read company documents on the plane, day or night. If you’re a company-bound cube rat, claim the iPad lets you get started on the commute in. Do not tell the boss that you watch Hulu in your cube anyway, and that with an iPad you can get started on Season three of Babylon 5 early.

4. “Turf” is Your Friend. Organizations are like big, dysfunctional families. The next square over from your boss on the org chart is like your boss’ brother. Your boss’ brother’s employee Fred, then, is your cousin.

If Cousin Fred gets an iPad, you have to get an iPad, or your boss becomes the “little brother.” Do not let on that you understand this dynamic. Do swear him to secrecy – if he’s not supposed to know Fred’s getting one, he might fast-track your iPad, so he can get there first. Bonus: You can rave about any aspect of the iPad you want, productive or otherwise. It doesn’t matter. If he believes Fred’s getting one, you’re in.

5. Boss hates you? Score! If your boss hates you, you can only still be employed for one reason: You’re good at your job. What’s the best way to get work from you, without putting up with you? Telecommute! See reason number one for ways to highlight how iPad can be a budget-friendly option thanks to all those budget-friendly apps.

Be creative, be exploitative, be manipulative—then find some way to prove to your company that the iPad is worth it. If all else fails, try reverse psychology… after all you don’t really need an iPad, but you’re willing to use one for the good of the company, of course.