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How to Cheat at Work and Get Away With It

It sounds like the wrong thing to do but here's how a little lying can get you extremely far in your career.

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It sounds like the wrong thing to do but here's how a little lying can get you extremely far in your career.

At some point in your life, you’ve probably heard someone say, ‘work hard!’. If it was your overbearing parents then it was almost always, ‘work harder!’. While I’ve always believed in hard work, I’ve always thought that energy needs to be channelled in the right way. This is why my personal motto is, ‘work smart, not hard’.

Basically, how can you cheat employment at its own game?

Say yes now, and learn how later

The fastest way to learn and keep yourself accountable at work is to accept new challenges as they come your way. This means, if your manager asks you to do something, just say yes and figure out how to do it later. Now, you have to play this one carefully. Don’t say yes to the big things that will affect the entire workflow. Say yes to the small things like how to do a report that you can use a colleague to help figure it out. The more you do this, the more you’ll find yourself willing to learn and try new things.

Shadow someone

Unless your workplace has a learning initiative that allows you to shadow someone in a different department, you’re going to have to steal time to do it. Shadowing someone in a different department is a great opportunity to see how other aspects of the business work. You might also be surprised to find that you enjoy that line more than your own. Just be smart about it. Use your after-work hours or breaks and never let it interfere with your actual tasks. And when your manager needs someone to liaise with that department, your hand should always go up first.

Stay ahead of the curve

Remember in high school when you’d spend most of the evening prep joking around with your friends even though you had a CAT the next day? The consoling part of it was always that your friends were just as unprepared. The joke was on you however because there was always one who woke up in the middle of the night to study and put everyone to shame as they became number one! You can apply the same little lie at work as well. You can stay in late on some days to prepare for a presentation or do a course on a skill you’re lacking. Or, you can give up that hour of TV when you get home to set some goals for yourself. Investing in yourself like this after everyone’s left the office is one of the best things you can do for your growing career.

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