Stop throwing money away at work

by Phil Lowe

When we choose where to work one of the key factors in our decision is how much we will get paid. If you are faced with two companies offering similar roles you will likely choose the one that pays better. Many of us don’t pursue our passion because we choose a job that makes more money instead. Why then, once we have chosen this path do we make such poor decisions that lose us so much easy money? Read on to find out the silly places you are losing money.

Expenses

Most companies have a policy when it comes to expenses but they often don’t share the exact details of the policy in fear that employees will take advantage of it. If that policy is in place then you taking advantage of it is perfectly acceptable, it is there as a guideline for you. As an example, I had a job in a consulting office where our mobile bills were “partly” covered. This was left very ambiguous and employees were told to only expense the portion of their mobile bill that was work-related. Some of the employees in the company expensed $10 a month of their $60 bill as they felt they were mostly using their mobile for personal reasons. Others expensed 100% of the bill as they felt they were on a much higher bill so that they could be available at all hours for work. It is important to find out the exact details of expense policies in your company and ensure you are meeting them all.

Holiday time

I have worked in a number of companies now and there is always one person who “doesn’t have time for a holiday”. He or she is working too hard and says that they simply can’t do it. This is never the boss of the company by the way. This person is effectively giving money back to the company as they are entitled to these paid days of absence and are not using them. Don’t be foolish, take your days off and enjoy your life.

Check your salary

So many people work hard for that initial salary but once they have it they stick with it for years. You should regularly negotiate your salary to ensure you are earning a competitive amount and being rewarded for your expertise.

Use the perks

My previous company came with a $300 health voucher. I saw so many people fail to use this as they didn’t have the time to see the doctor and didn’t really need to. Instead, I took that $300 and opened a tab at a local physio. I went for sports massages every month for the rest of the year. This worked so well that I soon started to buy other employees’ health vouchers for $100. Make sure you take full advantage of the perks offered in your company.

Learn at work

Most modern companies have a budget set aside for training and managers will usually not mention that the budget doesn’t get used every single year. Ask your company if there is a budget and if they are willing to support you with on the job training. This can allow you to learn skills to progress your career and get you some time off work. Win-win.

Finish at five

If you are contracted to work until 5 pm, then finish at 5 pm. Of course, there are occasions when you will need to stay late to get a project completed but don’t make a habit of it as you are not paid to do so.

Use the guidelines that your work has put in place to ensure you are maximizing the value of your position. Doing anything other than this is just foolish.

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