Danger: Office Spies at Work
You Would be a
foolish person when interviewing for a job to ask the office manager or Human Resources manager, "Does your operation have office spies?" Why? Before I answer just let me say that yes, you are to be totally prepared for almost any office situation on board when applying for work, but if you ask about office spies, the person interviewing you will look at you like you have stepped out of one of the "Mission: Impossible" films starring Tom Cruise.
Obviously you are not Tom Cruise, and I am talking to men and women for I do not discriminate in daily life or writing free self-help advice hubs. Being that you have "opened a can of worms" by asking about office spies, just sit there without looking stupid and study the body language of the person who holds your employment future in their hands.
Most times, the interviewer will quickly thank you for applying for the job that is being offered and in a nice way tell you that your application and resume will be kept on file just in case a job does become available. All because you asked about office spies.
Of the following, which one can cause you the most trouble?
Make a Foolish Mistake in Thinking
that the office loud mouth, "party animal," or even the casual bully is an office spy. This is what makes the work of "real" office spies so easy. Unassuming employees are always the easy prey of these under-handed, egotistical, manipulative people who are out to keep you from being in the way of them receiving all of the praise, credit, raises and promotions from the company.
with this rather sensitive topic about office spies. I am not going to bombard your already-crowded mind with more introductory text and such for I give you credit for having a sharp mind and clear judgement when it comes to becoming the prey for some insecure, office-strangling office spy.
Here are a few simple, generic tips for you to know your office spies.
- Does your office manager have more than one "emergency office meeting" in one week's time? And the one topic of these emergency meetings are about one thing: the boss hearing some loose talk about how unfair the cafeteria management is to only offer a handful of food items for lunch.
- Does the office manager/boss always start each "emergency office meeting" or a regular meeting with this phrase, "It has gotten back to me that . . .," then he or she cuts into the ragged staff whose morale is already in shreds by the boss' fiery accusations of being fired for the action that has 'gotten back to them.'
- If the tone of your office manager or Human Resources Director is always like that of a Marine drill instructor so the office staff will not have to guess that what he/she is talking about is a serious incident, then an office spy is amongst you and is about to get you or a coworker in deep trouble.
- If your more-than-usual "emergency staff meetings" has everyone accounted for (including the janitorial staff), but one employee whom you have noticed is always busy with "that" top-level project assigned to him/her by the boss, then something evil is afoot here, dear trusting employee.
- Take a quick glance around your workplace. The office policy on cell phones are "no cell phones are to be turned to the "on" position or be used during office hours, but there is always the same one or two employees who think that their obvious abuse of this policy is so stealthy that they will never be busted. Be on your guard. These no cell phone policy abusers may not yakking to their mom, significant other, or just gossiping. They might be talking to their contact in the boss' office about you.
- When your probation period ends and you are now considered a regular employee and turning out great work, but somehow you are always being called into the boss' office to answer "just a few questions," the boss says (off the cuff) that he "forgot" to ask you during your interview, start planning your defense strategy. I don't mean you are going to be terminated immediately, but be on guard just the same.
- If you are doing your best to follow office procedures and doing great work, then why are you the only one ever to be called into the office manager's office? To ignite more suspicion, when you ask, "Sir/ma'am, am I not doing a good enough job?" or "Sir, ma'am, I do not mean to be complaining, but this makes the fifth time you have called me in to your office and I do not know why?" That is because you only get double-talk and unproven situations.
- If you are directly accused of an office infraction, and you know that you are innocent, you are well within your rights per The Federal Labor Dept., to ask for proof in writing or via office video. Do not just agree with an accusing manager who is dumb enough to believe an office spy who simply is jealous of your work that is much better than theirs. Be civil, but also be straight forward with the boss.
- While at your desk working away, the office manager makes it his/her business to stop by, pull up a chair and talk to you in hypothetical terms like this: Let's assume for a moment that in our office there is this one employee who somehow is just "on my bandwagon" when it comes to off-the-job activities, what do you think should be done with such an employee? What? Is this the 1950's? No boss with a quarter's worth of intelligence need to talk to anyone under his/her supervision with such stupidity. And that hypothetical situation of 'what should be done with such an employee for not being on his/her bandwagon for off-the-job activities,' what a stupid question. Is the employee who does not care for office softball on Sundays going to be terminated for somehow becoming a direct threat to the boss' absolute authority? What do you think?
- Office spies are very clever and many times work as teams of two. So as you do your job well, cause no problem for the boss, work well with others, suddenly "Bill" or "Shelly" at different times sit down with you at break time or on your lunch hour to just "confide" in your about "an" office problem that is affecting "them." Do not be so weak and stupid as to be lured into this easy ploy to get you to say something negative about the boss or the company. This duo is doing what is known in office terms as "fishing." Do not be like a famished catfish and bite the bait.
When You are Accused and Reprimanded by The Boss for an Infraction, and he/she Provides you With Written, Video Proof . . .
Do not try to defend yourself. Even if you are an exemplary employee, an office spy "has it in" for you because you are either getting more attention from the boss or getting more rewards such as a promotion that they knew was going to them, you are facing an embarrassing termination and you are innocent. Do not answer any questions unless you are represented by a litigator who will advise you (before hand) about what your rights are, what you should or should not do.
These are your rights as an employee.
Now that you are armed with this free and valuable advice, you should have a long, happy career at your job.
Good night, McAllen, Texas.
© 2017 Kenneth Avery