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ImageHow do cunning employees get past their hardworking but not-at-all street-smart colleagues?

An office is an office. You go there. You work throughout the day. You get paid at the end of the month. You try to do better than the others so that you can get a better salary hike. Shouldn't that be the way to function in a workplace?

It would be, if the world were an ideal place in which everyone was honest and efforts got rewarded without fail. Alas, that is not the case in the average workplace where growth is merit-based, but only on paper. If bitching is one of the inseparable attributes of every workplace, it is partly since some employees manage to surpass their colleagues not with hard work but with skillful manipulation. How do they do it?

To start with, they use the most ancient tool known to mankind: sycophancy. Sucking up to bosses is prevalent everywhere, the extent to which an employee stretches himself/herself is what varies. The simple but highly effective formula is of agreeing with everything that the boss says. If the boss can catch the guy – that is, figure out why s/he is saying 'yes' to each and every thought – the employee's strategy may not work. If not, s/he is likely to get a bigger pay raise than the others, less smart characters around him/her.

Bosses are human. That being the case, most like to hear that their approach and ideas are simply matchless. Much more evolved sycophants are those who not only agree with the boss, but praise their work to the skies. This, they do with such subtlety that many bosses miss the point of their juniors' exercise totally.

It is well-known that bitching about colleagues to the bosses is very common. What the smart guys do – a quality which puts them ahead of the rest of the pack – is disguise their complaints as 'innocent mistakes of ordinary humans'. The person who is at the receiving end of such complaints gets pulled up by the boss. And, our smart guy benefits from the troubles faced by others.

Apart from using such tactics, the really cunning employee is someone who pretends to work really work when the boss is around. S/he may be the laziest person in the office; but what s/he communicates to the boss is its exact opposite.

Such slimy characters may not be popular at the workplace. But the truth of the matter is that they don't give a damn, as long as their pay cheques get fatter, man.

By Biswadeep Ghosh

Image Source: Thinkstock photos/Getty Images
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