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8 Things Your Boss Doesn’t Want You to Know

8 Things Your Boss Doesn’t Want You to Know

Whistleblowing is a stigmatizing act. For every person that looks up to you, there’s one that looks down on you and a dozen that want to destroy you. Leaking the secrets of Corporate America labels you for the rest of your life, and it’s not easy. Your boss teaches you everything you need to know about how to perform your job, but they won’t teach you how to seek justice if your job hurts people. Here are some other secrets your boss doesn’t want you to know.

1. Your Boss Needs You

    When you look up your company online or see them in the news, it’s always the executives they discuss. You’re just some number at the bottom of the ladder, so it’s easy to feel like you can’t affect anything in your company. The truth is the real power in corporations isn’t held by executives; the real power lies in the hands of those working in the trenches.

    Your boss probably can’t do your job. When you hear about Jamie Dimon and Brian Moynahan leading Chase and Bank of America to foreclose on peoples’ homes, they’re not doing it personally. They don’t even know how to perform a foreclosure if they wanted. A leader barking orders is just a lone nut without followers to carry out those orders. This is why they go out of their way to keep employees from unionizing. Never forget that.

    2. Your Boss Can’t Be Your Friend

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      Your boss wants to be your friend, but they can’t. When push comes to shove (and it happens often), they may have to let you go, and that’s difficult to do to a friend. Even if they like you, they can’t do much to help you if you’re in a position where numbers are tracked.

      If their boss doesn’t notice, your coworkers most certainly will. If it’s between your livelihood and your boss’s, you better believe your boss will choose self-preservation

      3. Your Boss Guesses…A Lot

        When I worked in management, guessing was nearly a daily occurrence. It’s not that we didn’t know what we were doing – it’s that so much work comes in, so many holes need plugged, that you have to do the best you can with what you have. Part of being a boss is taking an educated guess and seeing what the outcome is.

        Taking chances that pay off mean you’re a great leader, while a chance that fails can put you in hot water. Don’t let it get to you; I once broke something that crashed the backend processing system (overnight updates) that got the head of Countrywide’s IT department paged at 3am. I survived years between that and my departure from the company – this is the nature of the job.

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        If you aspire to a position in management, show your boss you’re not afraid to take chances.

        4. You Have More Power than You Think

          I’m just some guy who once worked in a cubicle in some schmuck position until I spoke up. Soon I was speaking to lawyers, regulators, and more. In doing so, multiple global corporations got hit for billions, and it’s still happening. If I can do it, so can you.

          5. You Can’t Speak Freely

            Think you’re free? Post something controversial on the Internet and then act up at work. You may feel like your work is your life and your associates are your friends and family, but they’re not. When you leave a job, your work circle fades, save for a special few. Some are by choice, and others are out of your control. Watch what you say.

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            6. You’re Always the Last to Know

              Everything in business is on a need-to-know basis. Associates get informed just before the media informs the public. Your company does this so they can preach about how the media is misinformed and you have the real inside story.

              7. Your Company Will Steal Your Work and Contacts When You Leave

                You signed a lot of contracts when you took your job; those contracts stole everything you did during your career. Remember when NBC kept Conan O’Brien off TV? He’s not unique, and neither are you.

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                Even Ari Gold couldn’t take his clients on Entourage, and he was backed by an entire team of writers. Be aware of this going in. Business is about more than just money.

                8. You Get Blamed for Everything

                  I stepped up for my people anytime the chips were down, but when my team got blamed for a failure of mine, I didn’t exactly step up to the plate. I was one of the more generous managers too. If you think your boss doesn’t do the same, you’re delusional.

                  Some will even throw you under the bus individually (see above points for more examples). The motto CYA is much more prolific in business than YOLO. Act accordingly.

                  Featured photo credit: New Line Cinema via wwws.warnerbros.co.uk

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                  5 Powerful Ideas on How to Be Productive at Work

                  5 Powerful Ideas on How to Be Productive at Work

                  Not being able to stay productive at work is a problem that everyone runs into at some point; no matter how much you like your job, there are certain factors that prevent you from staying at maximum proficiency throughout the whole day.

                  A lack of productive focus at work can lead to extra stress on yourself, missed deadlines, passed opportunities, raise denial, demotion and even termination.

                  So, if you are someone who has trouble with your productivity, here are five effective tips on how to be productive at work:

                  1. Take breaks

                  First and foremost, it’s important for you to take regular breaks. Trying to work throughout the whole day will tire your brain, which will then cause you to doze off and think about something else.

                  If you keep working your brain, it will fill up and get jumbled with information—sort of like a computer hard drive. Taking a break would be like resetting your computer so that it can start afresh, or de-fragmenting the data so that all the information is in order.

                  This is a great thing because it allows you to solve problems you were unable to solve previously, by seeing it differently; if you are able to organize your thoughts properly, you will be able to take in new information more easily.

                  There have even been studies about methods of saving time and staying proficient, and taking breaks is one of the leading factors.

                  According to Christine Hohlbaum, the author of The Power of Slow: 101 Ways to Save Time in Our 24/7 World, eating lunch away from your work area every day will greatly increase your productivity. Eating in your work area will give you the illusion that you are working, but whether you like it or not, your brain will begin to wander and think of something else and then you will be working tirelessly with no progress.

                  It’s important to take breaks before and during work too: if you come to work in a rush because you woke up late, your mind will not be mentally prepared for the day ahead, and you will spend the first 10 to 15 minutes trying to get organized and composed before you can actually start working.

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                  Instead, you should try to wake up 20 minutes earlier than the time it would take you to “just get” to work. Take that time to stare off into space and not worry about anything.

                  If you do this, your brain will be empty and ready for all the challenges it has coming for the next few hours.

                  If your employer only allows a set amount of breaks during the workday, that doesn’t mean you can’t just get up and walk around for a quick break every now and then.

                  Even if it’s only 5 minutes, it will refresh your brain and you will gain renewed energy to do your job.

                  Learn more about The Importance of Scheduling Downtime.

                  2. Pace yourself and balance your workload

                  One problem that most people run into is that they underestimate the amount of work they have to do, and end up doing 50% of the work in the last 20% of the time they have to do it. This is due to an issue of balancing one’s workload.

                  When you receive a project, or are doing a job you normally do, take some time to really plan out your work schedule.

                  Consider how much time it took you to do this last time; determine how you can break the project into smaller parts and which can only be accomplished on certain days, and whether anything might come up that could interfere with your plan.

                  All of these questions are important for starting on a project, and when answered, they will help you stay productive throughout each day.

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                  For example, if you needed to design a project to map out the amount of aid offered in various regions after Hurricane Sandy, you can break it up as follows:

                  You will need to know what organizations are offering help to begin with, how much aid those organizations gave or plan to give, which regions were hit by Sandy, and which regions suffered the greatest losses.

                  You start this project on a Thursday and know you have until Tuesday to gather this information.

                  In order to stay productive, you need to plan out your work week—now you know you can find out which organizations are involved in helping the Hurricane Sandy Victims any day since that information is online, but gathering information on the organizations may require you to call them.

                  Since phone calls can only be done during week days, you have to plan on gathering all of that information before the weekend comes.

                  That is just one example of a situation in which pre-planning your project will help you stay productive; had you researched the affected regions first, you would not have received the info on the organizations until the weekend, and may have missed your chance to call them.

                  That, in turn, would have wasted time you could have spent working on this project to finish it.

                  Knowing what you need to do, when you can do it, and how long it will take you, is important in balancing your workload and being more productive and efficient.

                  3. Put your work first

                  This is an issue that usually occurs with young people who are new to the workforce: they’re often tempted with offers to go out at midday, and then come back lost in thought and unfocused on their work-related tasks.

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                  While it is important to take breaks, your breaks should consist of you clearing your mind, not loading it up with other less important information—like sports.

                  However, that is not the only situation where you need to worry about putting your work first before all else.

                  In a work environment, the senior employees will oftentimes push some of their menial tasks onto the newer employees. If you fall into that category, you need to know that their work is not your work, so if you have tasks that need to be done, you need to do it first.

                  If you are a new employee, you must learn to say no to other people even when it means you may not be in their good graces anymore. You can help others out once your work is done, but you are paid to do your own work, not anyone else’s.

                  4. Don’t open your browser unless you need them

                  In this day and age, everyone is constantly monitoring their social network. This is a major pain point for companies, which is why many don’t allow employees to access their social networks on company workstations.

                  When you are at work, disconnect the internet from your phone and keep your browsers closed so you’re not tempted to log onto your social media accounts or browse any sites that are not work-related.

                  If you keep your browsers closed and phone tucked away, only to be used in an emergency, you will find yourself being a more productive employee right away. 

                  5. Try to be happy and optimistic

                  If you always have a negative outlook on life, you will be more distracted and less motivated to get work done, so it’s important for you to start your day off right.

                  This can be done by having a good breakfast or by taking time in the morning to watch one of your favorite TV shows before work.

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                  If you are happy, you will find yourself able to work much more productively as your mind won’t wander into worrying about something else.

                  Also, if you stay optimistic and keep telling yourself that you can do whatever you set your mind to, the tasks will seem much less daunting and will go by much more quickly.

                  Take a look at more effective ways to stay positive at work:

                  15 Ways To Stay Positive At Work

                  Happiness and optimism are the keys to being a productive and happy employee.

                  All in all, heed the five tips above and you will find yourself being one of the most productive people at your company.

                  While you do not need to master them all, each and every one of them will help you become a better and more efficient employee.

                  Featured photo credit: Pexels via pexels.com

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