Tuesday, September 13, 2011

10 Secrets to Appear Busy in Office

Lot of times we get those blocks of time where we do have nothing to do yet boss hovers around like a vulture circling over a prey. In those case we sincerely wish that the boss sees we are working on something. However, we are in one of those blocks and before we know, a mail pops up with a new task and that little block of time is lost. This list is specifically for these situations where you can ensure you are perceived busy for the mutual satisfaction of both you and your boss.

Disclaimer Alert:These tasks are being performed by professionals in wasting time and yet appear busy. However, author is not responsible for any loss of job, loss of pay or any other untoward consequences arising out of following these steps.

  1. Have at least 30 applications open. Have it in a prime number of combinations  such as  5 excel spreadsheets, 7 word documents , 3 powerpoint presentation, 2 other business applications, 13 notepad. Then use Alt + Tab to switch between windows as often as possible. Do claim periodically that your machine (workstation) is slow and hindering your productivity.
  2. Select all mails and "Mark them as Unread" Then go and individually mark them as "Read". If ever asked, just reply - "I am ensuring to be on top of things." Better still keep them unread after the activity. Anyone pouring over the screen and seeing your unread mail list will understand the amount of work your are loaded with.
  3. Open any file which has lots of data and charts in it. If you have two screens, better move the charts to bigger screen. This will not only make you look busy but also get you the intellectual tag.
  4. Book a conference room, sit facing the door and call your own cell from the conference phone. Meanwhile, you can then continue do whatever you want on your machine. Have at least one business application open which will be helpful in case of any uninvited visitors coming to your conference room.
  5. Call a meeting to discuss a new initiative which you know will never be implemented in another 5 years. Let the team brainstorm while you sit back and enjoy the discussion. Do have projectors and decks on to give the formality to the initiative.
  6. Reach office early before anybody can everyday. You don't have to leave late. Coming early itself signifies, that you care for the work and you are going the extra mile by coming in early, while you spend the time gossiping about everything under the sky with your friend.
  7. Ask your friends to call up your cell phone so that you can disconnect it. This signifies your devotion to your work and raises your esteem in the eyes of your bosses. On the contrary never go out and chat on your mobile phone in front of your manager. You are only asking for more work.
  8. Keep formatting and re-formatting different cells in an excel sheet. Nobody pouring over your screen can detect your lack of work. Using of shortcuts will baffle and make the hovering vulture leave quickly.
  9. Put 6-7 cups of coffee in the waste-box near you. Cups will tell all the stress going through your mind because of work. You do not need to drink coffee. The sight of crushed cups will do the trick. 
  10. Even when you are posting a blog during your office hours, ensure every time you press Enter key, the sound reverberates in your manager's cubicle. The sound indicates pressure, frustration and your high fidelity towards work. Most managers are sadists and become happy when they see/hear/feel their directs slog it out even if no work is done. All that matters is manager must know that you are slogging.
Do let out other secrets of being perceived busy in office in the comments. It will help the author here ;)