Different Ways to Look Busy at Work Without Really Working
Published on: Monday, 15th June 2009 08:10 AM
Source : wikihow
If you're getting paid to do something, you should do it, and do it well. But is it always that simple? What if you have a vague job description, a haphazard workload, and a very bad Boss who is only content when you look busy, but not if you're super efficient? Sad to say, but sometimes working at your maximum potential is punished. This happens a lot in larger organizations and retail.
Let's say you and a co-worker must each enter the data from 100 files, or shelve 100 books. You hustle and finish an hour earlier than your co-worker, and there's not much else to do. Your boss or manager walks by, expresses displeasure at the fact that you're not doing anything, and assigns you to an unpleasant, and really unnecessary task because they don't like seeing you relax (even though you earned it by finishing your assignment faster, right?). What do you do? Quit? File a complaint? Or slow down? These instructions are here for if you decide to reward your own efficiency by using that extra time you earned for R&R--without your boss noticing.
- Know what the standards are. At the end of the day, you still have to meet those standards if you want to keep your job. The main thing you should know is how much time your manager or boss expects you to spend on a particular project or assignment. Spend that amount of time on it--no more, no less (unless, of course, efficiency is actually rewarded in your position, not punished). If, for example, your boss expects you to spend 40 minutes on a task (because that's how long it takes most people) but you know you can get it done in 20 minutes, you should be able to sprinkle another 20 minutes of "fun time" in (broken up into 3-5 minute intervals) and still get the job done in 40 minutes.
- Create the illusion of furious activity whenever possible. Never have aclean . Fill your work area with several projects that you are in the process of doing (or not doing, as the case may be). Cover your desk with open binders, highlighted reports, and sticky notes all over the place—make your workspace look like a war zone. Remember to keep your wastebasket full, too, preferably with work-related debris. A good boss will see right through this, but your mean boss will be content to see youlook busy (because it makes them look like a good manager).
- Ask a lot of questions: Think up complex questions about tasks you have to do and ask them of your boss or coworkers. Ask questions frequently enough and everyone will think you’re really wrapped up in whatever task you're asking about. Be careful what questions you ask, though: you don’t want to sound incompetent.
- Open several of the applications you normally use for work and have them visible on your computer’s desktop. The applications, of course, vary depending on the nature of your work. For example, if your task is data entry, you should have one or more databases up and running.
- Be alert. Not working is like playing a sport or game. You’ve got to always be on your toes and ready for anything. Try to anticipate your opponent’s next move — for instance, does your boss always stop by at certain times? — and pay attention to clues (if you hear footsteps approaching, a chair creaking, or a flourish of activity nearby, it could mean trouble).
Watch out for Big Brother. Most large companies now monitor their employees’ computer usage. Learn about your company’s policies on internet usage, and learn about their monitoring efforts (it helps to make friends with someone in the IT department). If you can’t run afoul of the company’s policies without making sure you won’t get caught, don’t risk it.