I’ve cost myself some money in the past

As I’ve said before, I’m a fairly private person, a slight workaholic and I lack some social graces.  What does that mean?  I suck at schmoozing people in higher up positions at work but prove myself with my work ethic/results.  In the past, this has led me to low wages and missed opprotunities.  And yes, I was grateful to make any kind of wage but it was fairly low in comparison to the work I was putting into it.

This is what I made for a LONG time


Example 1:

In college, I was my manager’s right hand person.  He lived over 3 hours away and I worked at this little connivance store full time—which actually was more along the lines of 60ish hours a week in the summer and about 50 during school time.  And I never claimed more than 40 hours for the most part.  I’d stock up on hours so I could take small vacations when I was burnt out from working and school or needed to spend more time at school (I had a second job which was why I could get burnt out).  He ended up being replaced by someone closer and I knew more than the new guy.   We ended up not seeing eye to eye as he couldn’t stand the fact that I knew what I was doing and wouldn’t ask dumb questions just to make him feel better.  I never said anything to him or about him but co-workers were letting me know what was being said behind my back.  But I wanted the money so I stuck with it until a medical issue came up (long story) and I quietly left the job and went on to better places.

How did I cost myself some money here? I was barely making full-time hours (he scheduled me 32 every week which was the bare minimum he needed to keep me at full-time status by their rules and he had no reason not to schedule me for the full time status) and if I could have just asked the questions or made him feel like he was SUPER DUPER AWESOME, I would have kept my 40+ hours.  ( I won’t lie—the fact that they had to hire 3 people to replace me made me feel a little a super duper wesome)

Example 2:

Same job.  Before the jerk manager took over, my manager tried to get the company to at least make me assistant manager if not the actual manager.  I opened, I closed, and I ran midday shifts, knew how to do all the paperwork and was called at all hours for any questions BEFORE the actual manager because I lived 10 minutes away.  Why didn’t they pick me?  Because I didn’t do small talk well and after a month of deliberation, they said that I didn’t work enough hours to justify the move in pay.  Really? Why did small talk even matter? I put in the hours and had been known to be a little late to some classes in order to take care of work.  I pretty much lived there.  But according to the higher-ups, that wasn’t enough.  I was told a few months later that if I would have schmoozed them at that point in time, I could have persuaded them that I was the girl for the job.  Instead, I just continued doing what I was doing for a few months more until the jerk manager came into being.

Example 3:

Previous company I worked for before this current one.  I worked my butt off for $7.25 an hour in order to get noticed and brought up to a supervisor, where I made $7.50 an hour.  After making supervisor, I continued to work my butt off and made team lead.  I continued to make $7.50 an hour—doing more work than people who made a dollar or two more than I did.  Did I see something wrong with this? Yes, but I wanted to show the bosses that I could make that extra money and be so useful.  Instead, I made myself so useful at a lower cost.  I didn’t talk to my bosses—I felt so sure that they would take notice of my hard work and give me money.  Too late, I remembered that these people don’t give out raises unless you want to bug them for about 6 months.  I know this because my fiancé (than boyfriend) had the same issue.  Eventually I moved onto my current job–just after they offered to bump me up to $7.75.  No thanks.

So there are three examples of how I ‘cost’ myself money.  I’m okay with the fact that I slightly tend to overwork and I’m also okay with showing what a good employee I am through my work.  But I also know that I need to speak up for myself and make sure that I can bend when needed.   And I’m working on that! More on this tomorrow 😉


24 Comments on “I’ve cost myself some money in the past”

  1. That’s crazy! I’m the same way, I hate office politics, I’d rather just do an awesome job and get promoted, unfortunately that’s not always how it works. Good thing you got out of those jobs, sounds like you weren’t appreciated nearly as much as you should have been.

    • bogofdebt says:

      I couldn’t wait to get out of them–and it took so long I think because I failed to network! Figured my awesomeness should be enough but like you said, that is not really how it works.

  2. In anything in life there is politics whether it be the office or here on the internet and I , never get involved. I think whatever will be will be, no need to force it. If someone is good enough they will shine, they don’t need to kiss anyone’s butt to show them what they are made of nor do they have to work in a mini team to show off. It’s amazing how you will stand out when you stand on your own two feet. As for the others, the rise may be good for a while until the true skills surface.

    If you work at a job don’t be nervous to ask for anything even a raise. You need to know where you stand and if it’s not what you like, you have the option to leave. That’s the glory of standing up for what you believe and marketing yourself. You have to show them and tell them what you have done and plan to do and why you feel you deserve a raise. Don’t ever think that supervisors see everything, sometimes you need to tell them or show them the numbers.


    • bogofdebt says:

      Oh you are so right about just doing what you need and not participating in office politics. The rest of the story should come tomorrow! And yes, supervisors do need to be shown the numbers–I’ve come to the conclusion that they are human too and can only see so much.

  3. AverageJoe says:

    I can’t wait to read the rest. I’ve learned a ton from bad bosses. These stories are a great way for readers to learn without having to go through what you did!

  4. belowhermeans says:

    I can empathize with this post so much. The amount of entry-level jobs I have held down in my teens and twenties is obscene.

  5. Some jobs just won’t ever give you raises. Unless you stand up and ask for what you’re worth though I doubt any company will just voluntarily hand over the money. Be prepared and have evidence and ask for what you’re worth.

    • bogofdebt says:

      I’ve actually been in a few jobs where they (usually) gave out small raises yearly. It was of course, based on performance but as long as you didn’t screw up majorly you at least got a very small one. But, like you said, if you go in with evidence, a much better raise can be had!

  6. Modest Money says:

    I’ve been the same way with being too stubborn to kiss some ass when I probably should’ve. If I had played the little game my career probably would have progressed a lot further by now. You have to stay true to yourself though. If you had kissed ass you probably wouldn’t respect yourself as much. Eventually you are bound to find an employer who can really appreciate hard work and strong work ethics. The ones who need their ego padded probably aren’t the kind of people you want to be working for long term anyway.

    • bogofdebt says:

      That was what I figured out about a few of the jobs-especially the one at the convenience store (first and second examples). I wouldn’t have been happy if I had stayed because I would have had to bend WAY to much for my pride.

  7. I understand completely! I’m having that issue now – I manage down well, my team will do almost anything for me, but I “manage up” poorly – I won’t play the game the way the company superiors want me to. It’s going to cost me, but it’s going to cost them too – me. 🙂

    • bogofdebt says:

      That’s exactly how I was at the first two examples–the store employees loved me but the jerk manager hated me for that. Like I said, knowing that they had to hire three people to replace me made me feel pretty awesome.

  8. I never could do the ass-kissing thing at work. It’s why I had to eventually work for myself, I was miserable having to watch out for bosses and their idiosyncrasies.

    • bogofdebt says:

      If I had any marketable skill, I’d probably love to work for myself. I’d only be afraid of the work taking over my life–small workaholic tendancies 😉

  9. […] I’ve cost myself some money in the past […]

  10. I hear you on the office politics. I try to be pleasant, but mind my own business and do my work. I hear office gossip all the time, and mainly just ignore it and do my job well.

    I know that I am hard working and can pick up new skills quickly. I know that the important people I need to keep my bosses happy – not everyone else.

    I’m not afraid to ask for a raise when I’ve show that I have what it takes to make it to the next promotion. If they don’t give me the promotion, I’m not afraid to leave. I am grateful that I have been saving and have a good cushion so that I don’t need to be stuck in a position or situation that is not working well for me.

    • bogofdebt says:

      I have been slowly learning to not be afraid of asking for raises when I need them–very slowly but its a step in the right direction! The savings cushion I’m still working on but it will get there.

  11. […] I’ve Cost Myself Some Money In The Past- Bog Of Debt […]

  12. […] I’ve been terrible at undervaluing my own worth in the past! BogofDebt shares how she has cost herself money in the past. I’m not sure what the answer is, but learning to sell yourself and play the game is […]

  13. I am so guilty of this, myself. For some reason I think hard work should be rewarded…not butt kissing. Most of the time it’s worked for me. But there’s been a few occasions….

  14. Vanessa says:

    Oh Lord… I hate schmoozing but it seems to be the type of thing that you have to do to get anywhere these days :S

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