Bosses and managers talk. They talk a lot, and when they talk, they rarely mean what they are saying. Bosses love to beat around the bush, ask questions that trap their employees, or they are just simply incapable of communicating clearly.
To help employees better understand their bosses, Life in the Cubicle will publish a series of 10 articles that will translate 100 phrases and questions a typical boss would tell an employee. For each phrase or question, a translation is provided so you know what your boss is truly telling you.
Here are the first ten:
1. How much bandwidth do you have?
Translation: I have a crap load of stuff that I’ve put off for months and now my boss is asking for it. I need you to do it for me, but before I ask, I want to act like a nice person and find out how much time you have available to dedicate to finishing the work I didn’t do. It doesn’t really matter what your answer is, because I’m going to dump this on you either way.
2. Are you heading out to lunch?
Translation: You aren’t going to lunch. I have way too much for you to do.
3. We need to get you trained up on this as quickly as possible.
Translation: We will not be training you during business hours, so you better figure this stuff out on your own time.
4. We need you to dedicate 100% of your time to this so we can hit the deadline.
Translation: Due to my inability to properly manage a project, you are working late this week (200% of your time) to make sure this gets done, but don’t think for a second this means you don’t need to get everything else done as well.
5. What are your thoughts on this?
Translation: I have absolutely no idea what I’m doing so I need to package up your thoughts and deliver the message to management during one of my 400 meetings during the week.
6. I think the new office is really going to make things more productive.
Translation: The new office has very low cubicle walls.
7. While I’m out next week, I’d like to you man the ship.
Translation: You are the most underpaid employee in the department and assigning you bulls**t managerial duties allows us to continue to under pay you.
8. Believe me, I did everything I could, but the budget was incredibly tight for raises this year. We could only hand out ratings for those that exceeded expectations.
Translation: You suck and I would never fight to get you more money. We’ve been trying to manage you out of the company for the last 5 years. Get a clue.
9. That’s a beautiful photo of your family.
Translation: If boss is male – I want to hump your wife.
If boss is female – My children are so much better than yours.
10. Do you realize you accidentally replied to me in your email?
Translation: You’re fired.
> Continue to part 2 to read phrases 11-20
‘Translating what your boss really means’ will post weekly until it reaches 100 translations.
Do you want something your boss says to be translated by Dudley? Add it to the comments below.
Life in The Cubicle by Dudley B. Dawson
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