Are You Being Taken Advantage of At Work?

Are You Being Taken Advantage of At Work?

All too often, managers take advantage of their employees. As a result, employees are overworked, underpaid, and unhappy. But you deserve better than that. Find out the most common signs your boss is taking advantage of you and then learn what you should do to remedy the situation.

You Always Work Overtime

In a normal workplace, employees occasionally need to work overtime. But when your boss is taking advantage of you, overtime is a common occurrence. You might find yourself staying late several days a week.

Of course, you should be willing to step up and work extra hours when an emergency pops up or someone quits. However, you deserve to be home on time and to have time off each week. As soon as your overtime becomes a frequent requirement, you should consider speaking with your employer. Let them know that you’re beginning to feel the effects of burnout.

When you approach your boss, be respectful and understanding. Tell them that you’re happy to be a team player but that you feel overwhelmed. If you’re honest about the consequences of working so much, your employer is more likely to listen to you. You might use any of the following excuses to explain why you have concerns:

You’re not performing at your peak

You have health concerns

You’re afraid of making a mistake

With all that said, you shouldn’t remain with a company if you’re not being fairly paid for your overtime. Some companies might fail to pay overtime pay or could refuse to pay you any overtime. In this case, it’s time to find a new employer.

You’re Acting as a Personal Assistant

Unless your employer hired you as a personal assistant, you shouldn’t be performing your job as well as the job of a personal assistant. The majority of your time should be doing the duties the company hired you to do. If you find yourself doing a laundry list of other duties, it’s time for you to have a conversation with your employer.

Once again, you need to start the conversation with care. If you complain about doing tasks that aren't in your job description, you risk coming across as uncooperative. A better way to begin the discussion is to say that your job duties have changed and that you’d like to discuss the changes. It’s possible that your employer doesn’t realize they’re treating you like an assistant. If a coworker or a lower-level manager is the one assigning you these duties, you can go up the chain of command.

If your company has an assistant, you can ask about assigning the duties to an intern. Explain that you want to be able to focus on other important projects.

You’re Working Two Jobs

If someone in your office quits, your employer might ask you to cover the vacant role until they hire someone else. And this is fine, as long as the arrangement doesn’t become permanent. Unfortunately, some employers see this as a long-term solution to save them money.

After a few weeks, you should approach your employer. Tell them that you’ve been taking on extra responsibilities, and list every one of them. Then, ask them how they can change your income to account for the increased responsibilities. If they refuse to pay you more, ask them how else they will compensate you.

In the event that your boss refuses to pay you for your work, you have two options. First, you can ask your employer to assign some of the responsibilities to someone else. Secondly, you can look for a new job. You deserve to be paid for all of your work.

You Never Seem to Get That Promotion

In some companies, managers dangle promotions and raises in front of workers but never seem to offer them. If it’s been two years of your manager talking about a promotion but not taking action, then your employer is taking advantage of you. No matter how much you like your employer, you should take action. In the end, the lack of promotion could stunt your career.

To address this issue, set up a meeting with your boss. Be direct and bring up the fact that they mentioned giving you a raise. Ask them when they think they might offer you a raise or promotion. If your employer refuses to answer you, the only other option is to put on more pressure on the employer or to leave the company.

It doesn't hurt to start looking for a new job. In fact, your employer might give you a promotion or raise when you tell them about your new job offer. It’s a bargaining chip that could get you what you want.

Your Boss Steals Your Accolades

One of the most obvious signs of an employer taking advantage of an employee is the stealing of work or recognition. If you work hard on a project and your boss takes credit for it, you should take action. Without speaking up, you put your career on the line. No one in your company will know your value, and you can say goodbye to any promotions.

The way in which you handle this situation could help or hurt you. If you go over the head of your boss, they won’t be happy. The best way to address this situation is to remind your boss that it was your idea. You can say something like, “When I pitched this idea, I thought…”

If your boss refuses to acknowledge your work, then it’s time to go elsewhere. Failing to do so means you’ll never get the recognition you deserve. Find an employer who appreciates you and who is willing to let you keep credit for your efforts.

Start the Search for Something New

If your boss is taking advantage of you, there’s only so much you can do. Sometimes, the best course of action is to find a new job. Why let your employer make you miserable when you can find a better job somewhere else? It might be the right time to dust off your resume and start applying for vacancies.

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