All employers want to ensure they get the most from the salaries they pay their employees. For this reason, it is not surprising that they will put them to the test sometimes. So, if you think your boss is testing you, it is probably true.
Below are some signs that an employer is challenging their employees to step up to a higher level. Check out if you have experienced these lately.
Sudden Work Adjustments
1. New Project Deadline
Your manager may assign you a new deadline for your duties or projects to gauge how much effort you can put out before the deadline passes. Make sure you pick up your game the next time if it is a crucial task with high possible returns, such as a chance for incentives or promotion. In addition, your employer or team leader might be in the process of choosing between you and another colleague who could be more knowledgeable than you.
2. Longer Work Time
If you typically work 40 hours per week, and suddenly, your boss increases it to 50, they may be testing you to see how much more you can do before you burn out and lose interest. In addition, this could be their way of checking how far you are willing to go for the company.
3. Unusual Project Requests
To test you, your supervisor may ask you to perform duties that are not typically part of your job description. They might ask you to take on new responsibilities or help manage the team. This could be their way of assessing your potential or training you for a new role.
4. Increased Workload
Like in no. 2, this is another sign that your boss is testing you. They want to check your limits and endurance. In addition, they want to see your attitude towards pressure. Are you someone who resorts to grumbling? Do you easily give up when confronted with overwhelming tasks? Or do you prefer trying your best first before complaining and quitting?
5. Given Work Outside Job Description
Have you experienced this lately? Going above the call of duty indicates that your manager is trying you. It might also mean they want you to perform tasks other than those for which you were specifically employed. Some employers want to know if you can handle specific duties and tasks. Other employers will want to know if you are eager to learn new things and take on new challenges.
Changes in Interaction
6. Suddenly Ignores You
Is your boss ignoring your emails or calls? Or do they pass by you without responding to your greeting? This could be your supervisor’s way of checking how emotionally tough you are. If you are the type of person who easily breaks down when feeling ignored or rejected, they know you will not last in a fast-paced industry where relationships are only second to production.
7. Excluded from Meetings
Consider this as another sign that your boss is testing you, especially if newer employees are included in the meetings, and you are not. Probably, you have been too relaxed and overfamiliar at work that you are not making an effort to improve your skills and performance. This could be their way of telling you to step up or else you will not be needed in the company soon.
8. Not Invited to Any Other Gatherings
If your manager likes to hang out with the employees, but you are not invited recently, you must wonder why. Maybe you have committed some mistake, and they are waiting for you to realize it. Or maybe they are testing your maturity in separating professional and personal affairs. Are you going to show up at work on Monday and still work with all your heart? Or are you coming to the office late and sulking?
9. Unappreciated Effort
Does your supervisor always forget to thank you for your service? Or do they only see your lapses but never seem to notice your hard work and achievements? It is impossible they do not notice your efforts. However, they probably want to see how you handle a rude and heartless boss. Who knows? Once they have proven your toughness, you may already hear their “thank you” and “congratulation”.
10. Everyone Praised, But You
Ouch! How painful that would be! However, this is one of the common indications that your boss is testing you. They may do it to motivate you to level up. They know that their action could either break you or make you. So, if you take this as a challenge to improve yourself rather than quitting immediately, they know you are an asset to the company.
11. Criticized In Front of Colleagues
At the same time, it is hard to be humiliated by your boss in front of the whole team. Just like in no. 9, this could be a test of your endurance. Are you strong enough to stay and prove to everyone that you can do better? Or would you allow yourself to be stuck in resentment and self-pity, eventually deciding there is no more growth for you in the workplace?
12. Ignored by Everyone
If one day you came to the office and no one seemed to see you, there is a chance that everyone connived to ignore you. Either they played a prank, or your employer instructed them to do so. Or it is also possible that you did something terrible that offended your colleagues, so they wanted to teach you a lesson.
13. Getting a Chance to Steal Money
Has it ever occurred that your boss requested you to clean or go to their office, and you saw some stacks of cash on the desk? If this happens often and your supervisor seems careless with money around you, it could mean they are testing your integrity.
14. Sharing Secrets with You
Does your boss confide some secrets in you? If yes, they could be testing how trustworthy you are. They want to see if you can keep secrets to yourself or if you take them as scoops to be shared with your colleagues.
15. Being Bribed
Another sign that your boss is testing you is through bribery. Have you ever been offered cash or some privileges in exchange for some corrupt behaviors, like tampering with some data in reports or sneaking some cash? Do not think of it as a favor that should be grabbed, but rather think about keeping your job. Especially if you are a newbie, this could be their way of testing your integrity.
16. Badmouthing a Colleague
Does your manager often ask you about your co-workers about their performance, attitude, and even personal issues? And do they sometimes criticize some of them behind their back and tell you not to say a word? Do not assume your employer thinks you are better than your colleagues and they trust you more than them. It could only be their way of testing your character.
Pass the Test
Before deciding to quit your job, stay a little while and give your best in what you do. Also, avoid being too sensitive, and try to keep a positive disposition despite the challenges at work. You should overcome them triumphantly, especially if your boss is testing you. Who knows? They may be preparing you for promotion.
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21 Ways to be a Better Boss