Although cats can’t speak human languages, they can still communicate with humans just as long as the human is smart enough to understand what the cat is trying to say. To help you learn to obey the commands of your cat, you need to follow at least two steps.
First, listen to the type of meowing your cat makes since each type of meow means something different, much like the tonal differences humans use when making ordinary statements, sarcasm, or surprise. Second, look at the body language of your cat. The tail position and the cat’s body positioning says just as much as the meowing.
This combination of listening and watching body language works on humans too, although with humans you can’t shoo them away with a wave of the hand (as much as you might like to do, especially with annoying people like your boss).