If you are working in office, below are the rules you must observe if you want to grow in the company. Do not underestimate the importance of any of them. I have learned these things the hard way.
I’ll call it being office smart.
Keep your thoughts to yourself
At office, it is a mistake to express your real thoughts, ideologies and political views. Don’t even share your thoughts on social media unless you can keep your social media profiles hidden from everyone at office. Not only should you not share your own thoughts, you must also keep from sharing random jokes, quotes and memes.
By expressions of the aforementioned sort you will likely go out of favor with your superiors. You will either offend someone, or make them insecure by outshining them. You may affect their ego even by expressing an innocuous opinion that is different from theirs. This may not happen all the time. But there is no way for you to know what will affect whom, in what way and to what extent.
If you are pressed to reveal your thoughts on any subject, modestly say you don’t consider yourself to be learned on it but tend to agree with their (the person you are with) views. Everyone likes people who have the same views as them!
Remain intellectually mediocre
Your growth in a company depends on intellectual mediocrity. You may be Einstein or Aristotle, but no one cares. Mind your work and be good at it. Showing your intellectual superiority will get you labelled as weirdo. Office is not the place to showcase your intellect.
Have you ever seen anyone in higher management who is intellectual? I haven’t. And even if some day I see one, I’m sure being intellectual is not a pre-requisite for growth in management hierarchy.
There are many advantages of being mysterious. Don’t give anyone at work – especially the superiors – a window into your mind. Your bosses need to know only one thing about you – your capabilities at work. Be the best at your work.
For best being marginally better than everyone else at your level would suffice. When you are good at your work and rest all about you is mystery, there is nothing about you that will give negative impression. Plus, your work related capabilities will create a halo effect. People will fill in the blanks and practically assume positives of you in other areas based on the fact that you are good at work.
Don’t reveal your moods
Learn to keep poker face most of the time. Don’t be over enthusiastic when you are happy (you got praise, promotion or some achievement at work), and don’t ever show anger or frustration. The former will make people jealous and/or insecure, and the latter will get you labelled as immature.
Remain calm and composed always. Smile at appropriate moments, like when you see/greet someone. When at desk, poker face is what you want to keep irrespective of your mood.
Give your boss gifts
Everyone likes gifts. Remember, even an enemy likes receiving gifts. Giving your boss a gift occasionally (like on a birthday) may work wonders.
Don’t worry that your boss will suspect you of ass-licking. In a way it is. But giving a birthday gift is perfectly legitimate. Just don’t tell everyone when you do that. You want to be the only one (or of the few) to give gifts to the boss.
If the boss doesn’t like your idea, it’s a bad idea
You can definitely think “out-of-the-box” and provide suggestions, but if your boss dismisses the idea, give it up right that moment. Do not try to make him understand how your idea is better unless he asks you to explain at length. Remember, the boss always knows better. He sees things that you can’t see. (Of course, I’m being sarcastic.)
Know that if you have a different idea than your boss about something, it is good only if its implementation is going to benefit your boss. If you are thinking of sharing the idea because it is morally superior or for some such reason, don’t proceed. If the idea is not benefiting the boss, he does not care how superior it is.
Talk to your boss like his dad died today
I couldn’t stop laughing when a good friend of mine offered me this gem of an advice. This is the frame you want to keep every time you talk to your boss. Whenever your boss enters your vicinity tell yourself that his dad has died today.
Would you show your excitement about anything to him when his dad has just died? Or would you show your frustration about work? Or would you complain about anything? Or argue? Or would you make a joke at his expense? You get the drift.
Don’t dress better than your boss
You may have a very good knowledge of fashion and dressing sense, but don’t make a mistake of dressing better than your boss. If the clothes and accessories on you are better than your boss, that will make him feel insecure and threatened.
You don’t want to outshine your master.
There’s no room for political incorrectness
This is one of the most important rules you absolutely must remember at all times. I have already stated above that you should keep your thoughts and ideologies to yourself, and that point covers this. However, I can’t emphasize enough how fatal being politically incorrect at office can be.
In case you don’t know what it means, if you are against man-woman equality, feminism, gay rights, fat-is-beautiful culture, or any other issue on the liberal agenda, it would be the end of your growth, and probably even employment, if you express it to anyone at the office.