10 Mistakes You Should Never Do When Your Boss Isn’t in the Office or You’ll Lose Your Job

Last Updated on 2022-11-11 , 11:26 am

The cat is not in the office and the mice come out to play. Yeah, right

Even when the big cheese is not around, he KNOWS and SEES everything. Or at least, he knows if you’re stupid enough to give yourself away.

Hence, to save you from unnecessary grief and trouble-making, here are 10 no-nos when the boss is not around or you might just lose your job.

Social media

No matter how careful you are, you are bound to leave behind some social media evidence like sharing, liking, commenting, snapchatting, and etc. This is because someone you know knows your boss and your social media activity becomes the topic for the hour, which then becomes a nerve-wrecking trip to his office for a loooong discussion.


Pictures tell a thousand words. All of them the wrong ones to your boss. Especially multiple selfies somehow magically found their way onto your social media account. In other words, just think of your office as the Red Zones in the Singapore Armed Forces where photography warrants very severe punishments.


Once I took a power nap of 10 minutes and I did set an alarm for it, but some colleagues carried tales of my “long beauty sleep” to my manager. Much as research defends power napping, your boss will simply condemn your action as being “sleeping on the job”. I suppose this is why there is more coffee in the pantry than anything else.

Chat on Phone

Maybe you can disguise your personal conversations as calls to or from clients. But all it takes is a pair of sharp ears attached to a tattletale and your boss will hear about it. And if your office is an open concept, you are surrounded by many pairs of bored and disgruntled ears that waiting to stab someone in the back.


Gossip is one of the few things that makes the office bearable. Really. Listening in on gossips is fine and dandy but having significant contributions to the office grapevine is a whole different story. It simply tells the boss that your brain power and time are wasted on worthless chit chat rather than making money for him. Plus, word travels and fingers point. You get my drift?

Take long toilet breaks

Something that I and many others are guilty of. While we believe that toilet breaks can get our blood circulating and refreshes our minds, the boss believes that toilet breaks delay deadlines. In fact, some superiors believe that toilet breaks should be banned altogether. According to one of my friends, her boss believes lunch breaks are a waste of time too.

Questionable internet browsing

The often-ignored and frustrated IT department would certainly want to score some brownie points with the boss and flag any and every questionable internet content you are browsing on your desktop or company-issued laptop. If you use your phone, you are likely to still end up in hot soup. So why even try?

Mobile phone games

Perish the thought of “the boss is not in. Maybe I can go catch a Pokemon”. In the office, not only the walls have ears, every known surface has eyes make sure your work on your assignment or pay the price.

Going off Work Earlier Because There’s a Sale

Awesome! You think, now you don’t have to take annual leave to go to that awesome sale taking place at H&M. Who knows, your boss might have taken a day off to go to the same sale. Cue awkward explanation.

Work as fast as Sloth

Just because there is no slave driver to crack the whip over your head does not mean you can lepak one corner and work at your own time and pace. Fail to deliver your work by the deadline and he will silently note it down on your quarterly appraisal. Talk about being passive-aggressive.