Do you ever feel like you’re smarter than your boss? Remember one thing: smart employees do exist and sometimes, idiot bosses make their employees smarter by continuously stomping the life out of their innovative team members. Idiocy, in some organizations, works like a bug. The bug bites the entire management team and they all behave like they are clueless about what they speak about and what they do. Unfortunately, if you’re in a company which is affected by this bug, you are left with no other option than to look for a new job. But if you are working for someone who is extremely talented, handles the business very well, and manages things in the way he or she should, there are still chances that your surroundings may tell you that you are too smart to work under your boss.
Many scientific studies have highlighted a few traits which are linked to intelligence. We all have different skill sets and we have very different educational backgrounds. Smartness doesn’t always come in a particular field. No matter what roles you handle at your workplace, it doesn’t necessarily mean that your area of expertise can’t be wide.
Most of us never know exactly how intelligent and smart we are as we go through our day to day lives. This list is not an exhaustive one, so if you find that none of these signs are present in you, it doesn’t exclude you from being smart. But if you see many of these signs, you are definitely smarter than your boss.
15. You’re Harder On Yourself Than Your Boss Is
If your boss is hard on you, it’s normal for smarties like you because you understand that the management has high hopes for you. There comes a time when you treat yourself like crap because something you wanted is not happening. It is frustrating that you are not able to solve a problem or understand something. Some people always judge themselves unfairly, while many others easily tolerate their own faults. When you focus on the things you haven’t accomplished yet, you can easily set continuous goals by knowing what you have missed and how you can get it. This quality is rare. If your boss is someone who forgives, forgets and doesn’t learn a lesson, it means that he is not a real leader. On the other hand if you are the one who pushes yourself to examine your faults and correct them, you are undoubtedly smarter than your boss.
14. You Are Labeled An “Idea Machine”
There are a lot of extremely smart people out there in the world, but they don’t advertise the fact that they possess unique abilities. Intelligence comes natural to them, and smart people don’t try to draw attention to themselves, but as the old saying goes “good things can’t be hidden.” If your boss sends people to get ideas or suggestions from you, you’re a smart-ass in disguise. It doesn’t necessarily mean that your boss lacks ideas or is incapable of giving solutions, but if he prefers your ideas over his own, it means he knows that you are the one who is a smart problem solver and an idea generator. Your intelligent boss may have invented many ideas, but if he wants your ideas to be implemented, it’s a clear sign that you are capable of coming up with unconventional solutions that actually work and bring the results the organization wants.
13. You Are Fortune Teller
Whether it’s a new project, a new idea about hiring people, implementing marketing or sales strategies, organizing an event or anything that requires planning, if you are the one who can sense the potential challenges and alerts the company about the consequences and make your boss say “Oh! I didn’t think of that! How the hell did I not notice that?” you are the smart employee your boss can feel proud of having on the team. Intelligence gets attention, especially in the workplace. If you’re born with this intelligence, embrace it and be thankful to your creator for putting you in the smart lane. Smart people don’t blow their own horn, and they don’t hijack conversations. They sit quietly, listen to what a person has to say, and then they think about it. When they give advice, it hits the spot. If you are the one who brings things to the right conclusions, you’re smarter than your boss.
12. Your Assignments Are Ready Before The Deadline
Many people drag things to reach the deadline and they feel proud about it. Smart people think beyond the deadline fence and they finish assignments without waiting for the deadline hammer to hit them on the head. If you are a person who finishes up all the assigned tasks too quickly and doesn’t waste time, you’re smart. But what makes you smarter than your boss is the way you utilize the time. Do you go to your boss and ask for more work? Do you do it in a way that even your boss feels threatened about his/her own position? If yes then you know what you really are. On a positive note, do not bother your boss by appearing in his office all the time asking for more work. Try to figure out a way to utilize the time and your intelligence in a better way. Not all smart people are exceptionally productive, but being one at the workplace can be a good indicator of smartness.
11. Your Boss Asks You To Take Charge, But Not The Credit
Your boss is mostly concerned with presentations and wants you to take charge of important events, occasions such as meeting with a potential client, introducing a new product, service or the whole business to a group of people. If you find that your boss has less interest in the business process or he comes to you for everything related to department problems and disagreements with others, and then expects you to forget the discussion, these are the clear signs that your boss is not smarter than you. Your boss has little interest in the actual company. Your boss comes to you for solutions to department problems or even political disagreements with other managers — but then wants you to forget those conversations as soon as they are over, so they can take the credit. True intelligence cannot really be masked, but smart people appear seemingly normal and they don’t chase fame.
10. You Always Get The Inside Scoop
If your boss enjoys talking to you and tells you that he finds you a good listener, you are a smart person. When you start getting things with “don’t tell anyone else” or “this is between two of us,” you are the chosen one who has access to internal affairs. When your boss starts sharing key business information, especially the things that need to be handled with secrecy, honesty, and care, he is unknowingly giving you the signs that you’re smarter than him to handle such things. Your input, suggestions, and ideas are required in such matters and your boss needs no one but you to get things done with honesty. His reliance on you is a strong indication that you are a smart member who can manage things without breaking the promises and mutual agreements. You may find yourself faced with criticism for being your boss favourite, but if you are smart, you won’t let criticism bring you down.
9. You Aren’t Afraid Of Asking Too Many Questions
Your boss is a great visionary but he lacks communication skills and can’t bring clarity to the issues. To make things better, you are the person who asks questions and then more questions until you receive a clear idea of what he is expecting. When you find that your boss’ mission statements are nothing more than a garbled mess, and you are the one who works with your colleagues to keep things organized while making them understand the exact expectations, you are really smarter than your boss.
Believe it or not, a leader must be able to communicate effectively. Smart employees try their best to help their team do as best they can by understanding the main objectives. Smart people strive for perfection, and each time they notice even the smallest details. Their perfectionist mentality makes them ask questions until they are satisfied.
8. You’re The One Everyone Everyone Tries To Be Like
At a job, you are the part of a team. There are times when you see that you are the one who understands things quickly and this ability to get things quickly has made many of your colleagues rely on you. You are their favourite because even if they forget to take notes on something, you are there to make sure they know whats going on. If your teammates don’t hesitate to ask for your input, it’s a surefire sign that they trust you more than anyone. If your boss or people from the upper management do the same, there’s a good chance that people in the organization find your ideas, wisdom, and judgements more valuable and they respect your intelligence and qualities. A smart employee knows how to prioritize work and deal with problems. The others notice this and before things even get out of control, they take suggestions and ideas from the smart one.
7. People From Upper Management Are Your Friends
It’s not about licking boots to get a promotion or salary hike, but smart people tend to make smart friends regardless of their designation and financial conditions. If your superiors want you to be with them or if you often find yourself surrounded by your superiors, it’s a clear sign that you deserve that place, not the one where you currently are. After all, who wants to be surrounded by people who don’t understand the level of their thoughts? Management can easily relate to you and they can understand you. As friends, when you think of them with respect and honor, they also think of you in the same way. There are always some exceptions, but if you are the one who spends time with intelligent and interesting people who are smarter than you, cultured and creative, you are certainly a good fit for that “smarter than your boss” description.
6. Your Boss Is Like A Child, And You Are Their Shelter
Your boss is paying you every month. He is making sure that you don’t go away because you are his oxygen. He knows that he will have to struggle if you’re not around. He knows that he lacks what you’ve got. Collectively, your boss is just growing under your shelter, not technically, but yes, he needs you more than anything because when you’re not around and something comes up, he tends to wait for you before making a final decision. A smart employee can actually make an employer dumb unless the boss keeps polishing his leadership skills. When you become his second half at work, this is a clear sign that you are smarter than your boss. There are so many people in the world that have a very hard time improving their skill set. If your boss is one of them and you are on the other side of the fence, you are probably smarter than your boss.
5. You Think Bigger Than Your Boss
Your aim is higher than you can fly. Smart people know that if they want to make 1 million, they must aim for 10. They expect themselves to do great things. Even in the workplace, they are given more information, more complicated projects, more complex problems. Because of this, smart employees tend to have big plans. They know that they are realistic when they ask their boss to raise the sales goals. Whatever the goal is, when you start following a certain path to achieve it, you’re doing business smarter than your boss. For the organization, you may be just a part of the team who works under your boss, but for many, you’re the real boss who is capable of doing more than their superior can. There might not be anything that reflects your intelligence, but the way you think and act is an excellent indicator and only a few can think big.
4. You Have The Heart Of A Lion
There’s a viral video in which a cute puppy scares away three much larger lion cubs in a fight for food. Everyone paid attention to how bravely the puppy decides to eat right in the lion’s territory, but if you look at the lion cubs, you can see how badly they are scared and being driven away. Kids are like that, they need someone to have their back until they are grown up to lead. But when it comes to grown up professionals, sometimes the leaders behave like those lion cubs. They have the power to address the challenges and overcome the obstacles, but they keep people around them who they can approach for dealing with a crisis. If you are the one who is trustworthy enough and your boss comes to you for getting things done, you’re the one who is above the average and is a real boss here.
3. You’re Slowly Becoming A Counselor
Unless it’s your designation, if your boss brings his personal information and family details to you only, there’s a good chance that you are their favourite. But when the things start getting out of control and you become one counselor for all of his personal and professional problems, it is a clear sign that you are capable of doing more than what your boss can. He may be good at many things but if he is not capable of maintaining the right balance between his personal and professional life even when his problems seem small to you, he isn’t smarter than you. Although you might not be actively trying to advise him on something, the ability to analyze life and the willingness to help someone beyond their work life while maintaining a healthy professional relationship is a sign of intelligence. Smart people wear their brain proudly.
2. You Are Taking Risks On Their Behalf
If you feel that your boss will not mind you screwing up things, and he will be there to support you no matter what the outcome will be, it’s a clear sign that he respects your decisions and feels safe in taking risks your way rather than going with a different strategy of his own. If you have started living your professional life with a feeling of autonomy given by your upper management, it is a clear sign that your past success has convinced the organization and your boss feels more secure with your decisions rather than imposing their own ideas. Smart leaders take responsibility of what they do. If you are the type of person who welcomes challenges even after facing the problems, remains calm and tries to bring results, chances are you are exceptionally smart and your boss already knows this.
1. You Were Born Smart
Many smart people don’t like to think that they are really smart. When someone praises them, they mock themselves or just skip the discussion with silence. They know it looks like they are bragging about themselves, when, in reality, they are simply proving that they are born intelligent. Smart people are usually ready to face the world. From reading the news to learning new skills and polishing their work ethics, they keep up on current events not just before the exams, but because they are born curious. They think about situations in multiple ways. Even if they are reading an article on the Internet, a single sentence or a paragraph can give them multiple ways to think of something. In professional life, they always tend to lead and manage people rather than being controlled by someone else. This is a strong sign that you are probably smarter than your boss, without appearing so.
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