Top 5 insurgent tactics for surviving the work day

A co-worker has me in his sights. This is not an exercise, maggot!

Here is my top five list for surviving the work day using all necessary measures. Sometimes you have to, as they say, “take steps.” The ultimate goal here is to be passive-aggressive. If anyone actually detects these techniques your mission is a failure.

5. Pretend you didn’t hear. This is so amazingly simple and effective it is often overlooked. This can sometimes delay tasks for hours or even days. In extreme cases the enemy will acquire a new target and you’ll avoid the task completely. This tactic just oozes KISS. (Keep It Simple Stupid.)

4. This tactic is courtesy of a co-worker. No, he didn’t tell me about it. I’m just observant. Always go potty before you clock out for your lunch. And always go potty after you clock back in. This simple tactic can easily buy you 4-6 minutes of extra time.

3. When you hear a vehicle in the parking lot get up immediately for a quick trip to the bathroom before co-workers realize what is going on. Wait just long enough until you know your co-worker has engaged the customer.

2. Check for voice messages religiously whenever another phone line is in use. This tactic works best when your office has a two-line phone system and you are next in line for answering calls. (Picking up the line will prevent new calls from getting through.) If, God forbid, you have any calls you have to make, always save them up for when someone else is on the phone.

1. There will be times when customer engagement is unavoidable. If that happens, deploy countermeasures immediately, i.e., tell the customer it is not your department and that your co-worker is ready to assist them out on the floor. This is also known as an IED or Inter-Employee Deception. The effectiveness of this tactic drops dramatically when in proximity to your co-workers.

Remember that the tactic that works best depends on the unique situation. And remember your jargon when the chips are down. PITA (Pain In The Ass Client), Demon Client, and of course, Whiskey Tango Foxtrot which is best kept in reserve for calling 911 and asking for the whambulance.

Bonus tactic: Work on your blog while the boss isn’t looking. (I’m using this tactic right now.) Remember, ALT-TAB can be your friend or your enemy. This is more of an indirect tactic which really doesn’t accomplish much more than making you feel better.

10 responses

  1. Reblogged this on Shouts from the Abyss and commented:

    Got any office insurgent tactics of your own?


  2. Chocolate. Always have chocolate in your desk drawer.


    1. Hmm. That sounds suspiciously like a survival tactic. Can this “chocolate” be used to destroy? 🙂


  3. This one was before my time.
    Proof that you were on your way to greatness.
    Well done, sir.

    The way you capture the work environment…very Game of Thrones. But sounds like you know how to gird your loins.


    1. I struggled along and did what I could before you showed up. I hate to even think about it!

      Yes, the modern workplace is a lot like Game Of Thrones. That’s why I like it so much and can’t wait to get back every day. Of course, when I stick them with the pointy end I’m using a stapler.


  4. Snoring Dog Studio | Reply

    You didn’t mention sleeping at your desk. Sometimes, as long as there’s no drooling, people will actually believe you’re brainstorming.


    1. Brilliant. Although these days we refer to it as a thought shower.


  5. Oooh! Alt + Tab! How much simpler my life could have been had I known about this trick!!! (Wait a minute — I’m going to try it.) [Sweet, I’m going to try it again.] (Yup, still works.)

    Worked with someone who was a MASTER at tactic #2. Ugh! Then I got wise … mwah ha ha ha ha!


    1. Number #2 is insidious, isn’t it? I have to admit, I was a master practioner. Gads, I hated being on the phones. The only things worse than being next is being first.

      Thanks for the comment! 🙂


      1. Quite welcome!

        I hated phone duty too. Ugh. Especially since I was the *one* person in the building who did *not* belong to that department and had *no idea* how to answer many of the questions!

        But, technique #2 can be *brilliant* when masterfully employed for survival purposes. 😉


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