A few years ago, a CEO said to me that whenever someone came to him to ask for a raise, the first thing he thought of was he needed to find a replacement for this person as soon as possible.

The statement took me back a little. After all, employees are encouraged to ask for raises-particularly, women-because they want to assert their right to be paid for and rewarded for their work. I doubt everybody who asks for a raise is ready to leave their company.

In his view, he explained, whenever someone approached him to ask for a raise it meant that person was unhappy with his or her status in the company. And that meant that person could leave at any moment.

"Once that person entertains leaving the company, they're just occupying a seat at a desk," he said. "Their mind is not really there anymore."

He was probably right to some extent. However, his view of what a request for a raise meant and an employee's view of what a request for a raise meant were likely very different. It's the workplace equivalent of Mars versus Venus: what is said is so different from what is meant. (For more on how to be a boss, listen to the latest episode of my podcast, Radiate, with legendary former NBA commissioner David Stern).

That got me thinking of other areas of miscommunication between bosses and employees. Below are a few of my favorite and more common ones:

Boss Says: "We should try that out."
Employee Hears: This is a directive that must be executed at all costs.

Boss Says: "That was good."
Employee Hears: That was sub-par.

Boss Says: "That was great."
Employee Hears: That was expected.

Boss Says: Nothing-no reply to a request for approval.
Employee Hears: Approved.

Boss Says: "I'll need the report by Tuesday."
Employee Hears: Wednesday at 12:01 am.

Boss Says: "Can I talk to you for a second?"
Employee Hears: I'm fired.

Boss Says: "Anything else you want to ask me?"
Employee Hears: Don't ask me anything else.

And for good measure, let's flip this around:
Employee Says: "I've got a doctor's appointment tomorrow."
Boss Hears: I'm going to a job interview.

Do any of these phrases ring a bell? What comments have you heard that are commonly misinterpreted around the office? I'd like to know.