It’s something we can’t escape; work problems are going to arise from time to time. And while a lot of us except the fact that, when we are climbing up the career ladder, that there are going to be sticking issues now and again, it’s important that we work hard to get to where we are going. But at the same time, it’s important not to be taken advantage of when you are working longer hours and doing more than anyone else to prove your worth. So, do you know the signs that you’re being taken advantage of, and also, what can you do to ensure that you aren’t treated as a professional doormat?

The Signs

If you’re doing a lot of things outside of your job description, this is a sure-fire sign that you are being taken advantage of. In addition to this, people may stop asking you whether it’s okay to hand you more work. And, while these people may be above you in terms of ranking if you’re at the point where you feel that you can’t say no, this is going to impact your mental health and your attitude towards the job. But in addition to this, if you’ve been doing the work of two people, especially as someone left recently, and you are not being compensated for this, either in terms of a promotion or a raise, this is a big sign that you are being taken advantage of.

The Solutions

So what can you do to get the credit and compensation you deserve? Firstly, you need to think about if you are giving yourself enough slack. If you feel that you are being taken advantage of, it’s important to look at yourself and realize what you are worth in the work environment. This does mean, on occasion, saying that two-letter word, no! Self-respect is something that we can forgo, especially if we think that by taking on an extra task, it may mean a bit more credit, and therefore it benefits our career. On there is an insightful article on why self-respect is crucial. When we are climbing the career ladder, and we’ve seen what others have to do in order to get to where they are today, we feel that we have to bury our sense of pride to an extent. This is far from the case. In addition to this, if you’re being taken advantage of in terms of how you are being compensated, you could go down the legal route via law firms like to get you the necessary compensation. But, you need to remember that if you are in an organization where finances are a very touchy subject; you may want to approach the idea of compensation from a different angle. Other benefits are always available, not just financial ones.

And what we have to get our heads around, when we are trying our best not to be taken advantage of, is that conflict will naturally arise. So, we need to prepare ourselves for this eventuality. Conflict is something that will happen anyway when you climb up the career ladder, but you shouldn’t underestimate the fact that you need respect also.


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