Worker Is Given All Sorts Of Responsibilities Outside Her Job Description Without Getting Paid More — ‘I’ve Saved Him Twice My Salary’

She took the initiative and showed her boss her talents, and now she regrets it.

worker annoyed he was given double the work without getting paid more Elnur / Canva Pro

Most of us have to learn this lesson the hard way. You take the initiative at work, show off your talents, and suddenly, your job expands, and you're taking on more work — but not in the form of a promotion, and certainly not with any increase in pay.

One CEO and workplace expert said this problem is much more common than you might think, and it tends to happen to those already struggling in low-paying jobs.


The worker was given double the work without getting paid more after showing off their skills.

"What should you do if your boss asks you to do tasks that are way outside of your job description?" Robyn Garrett, a CEO, author, and leadership expert, asked in a recent TikTok.

She then shared a story from someone who'd written to her for advice, and it was a story she'd heard millions of times before.

@courageousleadership What should you do if your boss asks you to do tasks way outside of your job description? #badbossstorytime ♬ original sound - Robyn L Garrett

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"How should you handle it when you have skills outside of your job," the person asked Garrett, "but your employer discovers that you are capable and basically requires you to do those things for free. Is there recourse, or should you just keep your passions to yourself?"

The worker was overqualified for her position, and their boss began asking her to do extra work aligned with her skills.

Part of this worker's issue is that they are 20 years into their career and even owned their own business but now work in a low-level "front desk admin" position. Not that there's anything wrong with that, of course, and it suited her needs at the moment. "At this stage, I needed a calm, easy job," she wrote.

That was all fine and good until her boss found out that she was adept at "advanced social media" on a level far beyond what most comparable businesses are doing. She also had web development experience, too.

"He basically discovered my former business and started asking me to do those things for him," she wrote. "I didn't mind at first because I thought it was temporary or I'd get a raise or bonus eventually." Think again, of course.


Instead, he doubled her job. "He put another job on my plate on top of my current responsibilities," she wrote. "I saved him twice my salary and outsourcing." Unsurprisingly, she quit the position and moved on.

woman annoyed she was given double the work without getting paid more dimaberlinphotos / Canva Pro

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Garrett said this is an all-too-common trend, and it typically involves the lowest-level employees who are taken advantage of.

"I found that this is some kind of trend," the worker wrote to Garrett. "They hire you for a certain amount with a set bunch of contractual duties, and then somehow your time is just theirs to fill up with anything they feel like."

Garrett called this a "systemic" problem and said she hears about it all the time. She chalks it up to the attitude many employers have that workers are simply commodities.

"They just think of you as a resource," she said, which produces "a strange relationship with your time." She acknowledged that many jobs evolve over time, and if that leads to promotions, new opportunities, and more pay, that's fine. But this is a totally different situation.


"A lot of what I see is that the person was being under-compensated, to begin with, and now the boss is trying to fill other needs or take advantage of other skills… There is no excuse for this."

man angry he was given double the work without getting paid more Zinkevych / Getty Images / Canva Pro

It's so common, in fact, that it's even been given its own buzz phrase: the "quiet promotion."

You've surely heard of "quiet quitting" and "quiet firing." Well, now our working world has the "quiet promotion," where bosses give you extra work — or sometimes a whole extra job — without any extra pay. This is really just a fancy-schmancy way of saying "wage theft," and it's far more common than you might think.


JobSage, an employee-review software platform, surveyed American workers and found 78% had experienced being "quietly promoted" during their careers, and 57% said they felt their boss or other management had manipulated them into it.

@bonniedilber I chatted wirh @HuffPost about quiet promtions - if your work place is giving you more work without increasing your pay, that's not fair. #quietpromotion #huffpo #careertok #layoffs #techtok #corporatelife ♬ original sound - Bonnie Dilber

It may seem like the "team player" thing to do, but experts say you should absolutely not take this lying down. If you're given extra responsibilities, it's time to have a conversation about more compensation. Having a number in mind and a detailed description of your duties and workload helps these conversations go more smoothly.

But whatever you do, don't just accept it. Because once a manager learns they can count on you to take on more with no pushback, they tend to milk it for all it's worth. Work is work, and we don't do it for free. So speak up!


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John Sundholm is a news and entertainment writer who covers pop culture, social justice, and human interest topics.