Are You Being Taken for Granted on the Job? In previous posts, you actually had it good when your boss valued you too much to let you go. You get the same outcome but none of the kudos if it is taken for granted you will do your job well. Some jobs are easier to take for granted. Examples might be the background organization of a big meeting or convention, production of a regular report, or delivery of a well-established program. Here, obviously,...

Talking to Your Boss about Being Trapped in a Job We’ve discussed when being too good at your job can impede your career. This can occur when your boss has a dog-in-the-manger view of good staff; he wants to keep them even if they don’t want to be kept. It results in a feeling of being trapped. Whether to talk to your boss about feeling trapped It’s an option. With some real benefits. If he truly didn’t realize you were unhappy, you two c...

Avoiding the Dangers of Being Too Good at Your Job The answer is not, of course, to start being bad at your job. That really is cutting your nose off to spite your face. And I am assuming you are keeping your eye on the job ads. While you are doing that, there are other options to try to address the issue. Avoiding talking to your boss? This is where the assessment of jerkiness comes in. If you can see that your boss is demanding but fair; if he ...

Is Your Boss Impeding Your Career? Good bosses do not impede employees’ careers. Good bosses give you opportunities to prepare you for the next big step. Good bosses coach and encourage. However, good bosses are like good people; they are not found everywhere. How do you know if your boss is being a jerk in this instance? Your boss ISN’T necessarily trying to impede your career if he: Is very demanding Often forgets to say thank you Won’t a...

The Dangers of Being Too Competent at Your Job Some people have the charming but erroneous belief that all they need to do to get ahead is be really competent at their jobs. I have discussed this in other posts, but I want to focus on a particular subset—when it can actually be bad for your career to be good. And you are left out in the cold. You note the boss did this by both flattering you and subtly implying you’re not a team player if you...

Getting into the In-group
Employee Stream , Power for Employees / October 24, 2016

Getting into the In-group Okay, you’ve decided that you want in. How? Working hard? Taking one for the team? If the world were fair, that would do it. But plenty of hard-working, dedicated, and decent guys are thanked for their contribution but never invited in. Hard work is a given. In-groupedness seems something else. First, don’t make it obvious Don’t look desperate to get in. Remember the cartoon with a big bulldog and a snapp...

Preventing the Slide into the Out-Group
Employee Stream , Power for Employees / October 17, 2016

Preventing the Slide into the Out-Group In the last post, we discussed whether you were being ousted from your work’s in-group. This post is about how to prevent the slide if you can. Verifying your status Before you panic, you need to confirm that you are actually on the way out. Don’t talk to your boss. I know it’s the most direct route—he’s the one who creates the in-group. But think a moment. Suppose you say: “Hey, boss...

Are You Out or Going Out?
Employee Stream , Power for Employees / October 10, 2016

Are You Out or Going Out? If there is an in-group, it’s only logical there is an out-group, or at very least  people who aren’t part of the in-group. And, as I outlined previously, whether you are in or out can materially affect the progress of your career. Even if you’d rather not play this game, you at least need to know the signals so you can decide whether or when you want to pay attention. How to know if you are on your way ...

Are You in the In-Group?
Employee Stream , Power for Employees / October 3, 2016

Are You in the In-Group? In-groups and out-groups Companies don’t like admitting there are in-groups and out-groups—it conflicts with the one-big-happy-family thing they have going. They want to believe that everybody is equally valued and there are no first among equals. But, of course, organizations are set up exactly that way. There are in-groups at every level of a hierarchy, usually consisting of the boss and some of his immedi...

Are There In- and Out-Groups at Your Work?
Employee Stream , Power for Employees / September 26, 2016

Are There In- and Out-Groups at Your Work? It’s a silly question to some If you have a boss who clearly favors some subordinates, and especially if you’re not one of the chosen, this seems a silly question as it’s as plain as the nose on your face that an in-group exists at your work. But for those either new to work or to the concept, it can be hard to tell. Is there an in-group at your work? There probably is, in that it’s jus...