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Seven Ways to Get Away With Killing Time on Company Time

Updated on September 13, 2016
kenneth avery profile image

Kenneth has been a member of HubPages for five years. He is retired from a 23-year career in the weekly newspaper business.

"You shape up or else!"
"You shape up or else!" | Source

Have you ever been caught goofing off at your job?

See results

Tough facts

That we all need to face. If you either work in an office or for yourself, you have a boss. Seems unfair if you own your own business, but I was taught in my early years in the newspaper business that customers, advertisers and subscribers were my bosses. That one face never changed for the entire 23 years I spent in this hectic business.

But in some instances we employees will butt heads with (a) boss and this is just part of the territory. No two bosses and employees are ever exactly the same. Yes, I know this from both sides of the argument. One day, I was a fine worker and the next day I was "called on the carpet," to answer a boss who was to me, a bit too picky over some insignificant issue such as why I never wore a suit and tie to work.

This was, giving (that) boss credit, a good question. But my answer which was more sensible than it was intelligent, "well, when I go into the darkroom to process the film, I do not want to get chemical spills on my suit and pants, so I wear these jeans and flannel shirt to work." I must have convinced him for he never made an issue out of my work wardrobe again.

"I cannot believe this. You are talking on my time!"
"I cannot believe this. You are talking on my time!" | Source

There are those bosses

Who just seemingly love to catch employees at something they, the bosses deem against company policy or some other infraction. I agree with this thinking to a point. I was a boss at one time over another newspaper and I learned that if I did not trust my employees, they would not have trust for me. Simple fact, but true.

Sure there were times that "some" employees that were at this paper before I became the general manager somehow mystified me for I could not figure out how or who hired them in the first place. "These" employees were always late and offered lame excuses. Once I said kidding, "if you give me a colorful excuse for being two hours late, I will not have to let you go." That did not go over well with the slacker, but it was not my job to win a popularity contest. My job was to see that a paper was produced each week.

"You dead beats get outta here and sell some roofing shingles!"
"You dead beats get outta here and sell some roofing shingles!" | Source

Things do change

Now that I am not working anymore, and I find myself on the other side of the fence between boss and employees, I wanted to "give back," something as sensitive people say today, that might benefit those good employees still on the job, but sometimes fall prey to temptation to gossip, goof-off and other clever ways of killing time while on the job.

This piece I am entitling . . .

"I wish that for one day my boss would NOT show up for work."
"I wish that for one day my boss would NOT show up for work." | Source
"I work my tail off and there you and Jenkins were talking about women at the water cooler!"
"I work my tail off and there you and Jenkins were talking about women at the water cooler!" | Source
Does it seem as if you are not working, but caught in a spider web at your job and the boss is a poisonous spider?
Does it seem as if you are not working, but caught in a spider web at your job and the boss is a poisonous spider? | Source
How many times have you heard this?
How many times have you heard this? | Source
"I saw you sneak in here thirty seconds late."
"I saw you sneak in here thirty seconds late." | Source
Look familiar?
Look familiar? | Source
To be fair, even female bosses sometimes are out to catch good employees catching a few minutes rest
To be fair, even female bosses sometimes are out to catch good employees catching a few minutes rest | Source

7.) Working and Goofing Off - - naturally are on opposite sides of the spectrum. If you have a tendency to goof off, well, do not worry. You are a normal employee. If you like to goof off, make sure that your job is caught up to where it won't hinder company progress. Always "look" busy when the boss walks through your area although you are not busy. Looks can say more than a windy explanation for your feet being up on your desk.

6.) Two Employees - - stealing a moment to share a big moment on last night's ballgame can be a bit risky for some companies will terminate employees for not "keeping their shoulders to the grindstone and their noses to the wheel," so do this. If you and your coworker are chatting about something that is not work-related and the boss shows up, instantly change your subject to a work-related topic. Example: "Hey, Bill, how about that pass Rodgers threw last night?" Bill: "Oh, yeah that was some, well, Tom, I see this project as a great way for our company to beat the competition." (See how "Bill" made that transition look easy?)

5.) Manila Folders - - are great for camouflage when you are wanting to steal a bit of rest on company time. But you have to do two things: one, fill the folder with papers that looks important and two, walk from department to department while looking inside the folder. No boss will dare interrupt you.

4.) Truth is Nice - - to get you some down time, but do not abuse this method or you might be fired. Just pop into the boss' office and say, "Hey, boss. Just wanted to kill a few minutes in your office where it's more peaceful. Those machines on the floor get to me." Many times, if you are a good employee, the boss will reply, "Yeah, Larry. Sit down and take a load off," but you only stay for around five minutes.

3.) Planning Ahead - - is a wise thing to do if you like to sneak a few minutes talking to your best buddy in the office. But do the planning at break time or lunch. Make a plan to meet somewhere and act as if you are doing research on a certain company-related project and this will give you and the close friend a few needed-moments to talk.

2.) Purposely Injuring Yourself - - is not that wise, but it may give you an entire day off that is if you do not have to go to the hospital. Now. This is a very complex tip, so pay attention. This tip is not for all employees. Just those who crave to kill time on company time. Learn how to take a fall like a Hollywood stuntman. You can find out how to fall on most search engines, so that is covered. Now when you "fall," do it while other employees are watching for they will witness you falling due to a wet floor (that you wet when you threw the water in your styrofoam cup you were carrying). Act like you are in so much pain that you can barely sit up. The company nurse will look at your injury and you act some more when she touches the "injured" area. Now you can expect to be sent home or have another employee take you home and you two can talk on the way there and while there. The employee who is good enough to take you home cannot leave right away. He or she will have to make sure that you are comfortable before they return to work. (Do you like this one?)

1.) Computer High-Jinks - - is an easy way for you and a few others to "chat" while working, but be extra careful for sometimes the company will have a "lock" or firewall installed in your chat/email program to prevent such antics.

Oh, there are more clever ways to kill time while at work, but I could not afford to give too much information away for you never know when (a) boss might be reading hubs like this.

Good night, Sydney, Australia.

"I am the boss! My new rule is no more chatting on company time or you will be terminated."
"I am the boss! My new rule is no more chatting on company time or you will be terminated." | Source

© 2016 Kenneth Avery

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    • kenneth avery profile imageAUTHOR

      Kenneth Avery 

      21 months ago from Hamilton, Alabama

      Blossom SB,

      Thank you for your comment and compliment on my graphics.

      I seldom get any remarks about my graphics. Thank you sincerely.

      Maybe in the future I shall publish a hub entitled:

      "How to Save Time at Your Job and Save Your Job"

      Do you think that will fly?

    • kenneth avery profile imageAUTHOR

      Kenneth Avery 

      21 months ago from Hamilton, Alabama

      bravewarrior,

      Thanks, sweet friend, for your comment.

      And shhhhhh! Your secret is safe with me.

      Peace.

      Write me anytime.

    • kenneth avery profile imageAUTHOR

      Kenneth Avery 

      21 months ago from Hamilton, Alabama

      Well, Jeannieinabottle . . .

      I most certainly AM proud of you! May I?

      Hip! Hip! Hooray!

      Proud of my time-killing friend, Jeannieinabottle who wrote me today!

      Go, my friend!

      Errr, I got carried away there. I was having a flashback to my working days and you and I were killing time by "acting" like we were discussing an upcoming computer seminar.

      Did that sound convincing?

      Seriously. Thank you for the sweet (and BRAVE) note!

    • kenneth avery profile imageAUTHOR

      Kenneth Avery 

      21 months ago from Hamilton, Alabama

      cclitgirl,

      Many thanks to you for your insightful, honest comment.

      You are very blessed to be in your position. I cannot forget the times when I worked for our weekly newspaper and during the summer when schools were out, sometimes we would hire one high school student or maybe a college student in order for them to get credit (if they were taking a work program in the upcoming fall semester) and I am with you. Most of the ones we hired were glad to learn how our business worked.

      But when interviewing some of these young people we could tell if they were interested in "just" the paycheck or the job by the way they let their eyes wander up and down and replying, "huh?" to the most simple questions.

      These did not get hired.

      Write me anytime.

    • BlossomSB profile image

      Bronwen Scott-Branagan 

      22 months ago from Victoria, Australia

      Funny! And I especially enjoyed those images.

    • bravewarrior profile image

      Shauna L Bowling 

      22 months ago from Central Florida

      When I have down time at work I catch up on my HubMail!

    • Jeannieinabottle profile image

      Jeannie InABottle 

      22 months ago from Baltimore, MD

      I am killing time on company time right now while writing this comment. I hope you are proud of my achievement... I know I am! ;-)

    • cclitgirl profile image

      Cynthia Calhoun 

      22 months ago from Western NC

      This is a funny read. And you know, I manage college students and have to trust them...but sometimes it's hard if they are late or just act clueless. Most of the time they're not bad, though. :)

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