We should all cheat on our jobs.
We should especially cheat on our bosses. I never realized I had defrauded my boss until I read Zulie Rane’s clever article on the topic.
Then it became clear: I’m also a dirty, rotten cheater.
If my former bosses knew they’d have me locked up in a pair of corporate handcuffs and ensure I’m never allowed to work a job again.
Here’s why I cheated employers and bosses for everything I could and how.
The problem right in plain sight
I run an online business. Every day I talk to people about purchasing various products and services.
The most common objections are:
- “I’m on a budget”
- “I’m cutting costs”
- “I don’t have money right now”
- “Everything is getting more expensive”
They’re all some version of “I have money problems.” Without exception every single one of them works a traditional job and earns a salary.
See the problem? Job = Just Over Broke
At the same time, these everyday people can’t just quit their jobs and YOLO their entire net worth on some harebrained scheme. Makes sense.
So all they can do is what I did… start a side hustle.
The challenge is there are only so many hours in the day. Sure, you can work before and after office hours and on the weekend. But for many, it’s not enough time to relax and work on a side hustle.
I faced the same dilemma at my 9-5 job. So I took advantage of my boss and employer. Screw ’em.
The ethics of the decision
You might think I’m a thief. You may think my decision is unethical but hear me out.
I stole time from my boss and employer. But they also stole time (in the form of money) by paying me zero bonus for selling $12m worth of services instead of the $1m sales target I had.
When inflation went over 8% they also gave me zero salary increase. Whenever I needed time off for a legitimate reason it was a total shit fight.
The whole way through the global health crisis, that sent the world into lockdowns, the company told us “we love you and care about you.”
Simultaneously they laid off people left, right, and center.
So you could say I was unethical to cheat on my job with a side hustle. But in the same breath the average employer is grossly unethical, too, and how they treat humans and extract time from their lives for low pay.
How to bizarrely cheat on your boss with a side hustle
Now the ethics are out of the way, let’s talk about how.
Audit your time
When I did it became clear I didn’t need 40–60 hours a week to do my job. I could easily do it in 20 hours per week.
Use quiet areas of the office to your advantage
Most work is done in a noisy office full of distractions.
So you piss hours of your life away trying to get stuff done. Yuck. I found quiet spaces in the office and took my laptop there. Then I put my dumb work phone on do-not-disturb and got my work done.
This new environment allowed me to do deep work in a flow state.
Cut out the meeting a-holes
Certain people in a workplace just love to have endless meetings.
I identified who they were and then avoided them like a bat virus. I used persuasion skills to actively convince these meeting lovers why I wasn’t joining their talkfest orgy.
After a while they got the message. With fewer meetings in my calendar I could do real work such as reports, emails, and talking to customers.
Stop automatically generating more emails
Every email you reply to has a high chance of generating another email. And email is one of the daily tasks at work that takes up enormous amounts of time.
If you want fewer emails then reply to fewer emails.
I had to train some in the office to understand my new way of working, so I’d say “look, I read every email I just don’t reply to most emails to save people’s inboxes. But know that I read your email because I care.”
Worked like a charm.
Unless the email came from my boss or a customer, I could safely archive most of them and have it not affect me.
Use the added efficiency to cheat on your job with a side hustle
Now that you’re an efficient badass there’s more time to allocate to new opportunities. I used all the saved time to work on my side hustle.
In 2019 and 2020 I worked on building an online academy. Because my work laptop wasn’t monitored I could use it to work on a side hustle.
In other jobs I did have a laptop that was monitored, so I simply bought my personal Macbook to work and used it. All it meant was I had to use meeting rooms to do personal work so no one could see.
(Oddly, as I became more disillusioned by corporate life, I stopped hiding my personal laptop because I didn’t care if I got busted — and still, no one noticed what I was up to LOL.)
Remember this important lesson
This grand plan may sound awful to you but take note of this lesson.
As long as you get the work done, no employer or boss will care as much about you cheating on them as you think.
In my case, I did two-tenths of bugger all at work and still managed to do 12x my sales target. Now I look back, my boss/employer probably knew what was up towards the end and didn’t care. Why?
If you’re adding value to your employer they’re unlikely to fire you. And even if they do, you can always get another job.
Everyone should cheat on their job
Maybe what I’ve proposed is too much for you. Fine.
Still, everyone should use some of their work time to pursue outside interests. Because when you do, strangely, it has a positive effect on your day job. You come to work more alive and feel better about life.
Cheating on your boss to do work you love, and one day have the privilege to do it full time, like I do, is one of the best decisions you’ll ever make.
Cheat on your job to even the score of capitalism back in your favor.