Sorry – that’s “colleague” of the month, not employee of the month. You see, the word ’employee’ implies slavery, it implies that bond between employer and pleb – we can’t have that, oh no. So let’s call it “colleague of the month” or COTM for short, because if it’s not an acronym, it’s not worth using.

So, you’ve been doing your job, and you’ve been doing it well. You may even have made the company some money this month – well done you! You deserve a pat on the back. Except you’re not going to get it. No, it’s that twerp Colin from the Rochdale office this month, the one whose tongue has been seen hanging out of the Operations Director’s backside – yes, you’ve seen him, the one who forced his team to stay all weekend and do star jumps at 6am on Sunday morning to wake them up after three hours sleep. Yes, that’s him. Colin. The twat.

Colin isn’t actually a real person. He’s been constructed by a team of Harvard scientists using leadership & management manuals – a Director’s wet dream, really. They haven’t implanted any personality into him yet, but they have written a few lines into his personal bio that would make him seem almost human. Except that they’ve fucked that up too because among his interests, they’ve listed “Michael McIntyre”, which immediately singles him out as the most bland individual walking God’s earth.

Apart from McIntyre himself, that is.

And it’s not as if winning this stupid award gets you anything other than the ire of your colleagues. Indeed, most people who do win it have done absolutely fuck all other than bark instructions at other people and take credit for them having done some ‘work’, which is after all, the one thing they are being paid for. No, you’re not getting anything – but the company is going to make sure you all view this is Really. Important. You might even get a call from the MD, you might even get to his his parking spot for a week (oh lucky you).

So what on earth are you going to do to beat Colin to Employee – shit, sorry, Colleague of the Month?

1) Stay late

Fuck coming in early – that’s for people with CHILDREN – and we all know that their minds really aren’t on the job. Especially the women. No, stay late – even if you have nothing to do. Even if you’re only staying late to brush up on your Powerpoint skills, make sure that you’re the last person there. Yes, it means you’re going to miss The One Show, but COTM could be yours! Of course, there could be valid reasons for staying late, such as having to stay in an all-day meeting because your boss – probably Colin – wanted to find an excuse for not being at his desk all day. You’ve probably been doing star jumps or something. But in any sane world, staying late would be proof that you’re shit at doing your job in normal, contractual hours.

2) Be visible

This may involve wearing fluorescent yellow every day of the week, or it may not. Listen in to managers’ discussions and take notes, and ensure that whenever there’s a project going on – whenever management are asking for a ‘champion’ (i.e. pleb who champions their stupid causes) – make sure you’re involved, whether they want you to be or not. This is where advanced pooh-claimers really up their game. Not only do they do nothing and claim other peoples’ work for themselves, they get themselves involved in almost every project going. They’re even the ones who give them names, like “Project Fuckup” or “Project Doomed To Certain Failure”. But they’re involved. Every time.

3) Get involved on the “Sunday e-mails”

I’m sure that this is against the law somehow, but there’s a small cabal of people within your business – within all businesses of a certain size – who check their e-mails on a Sunday. They have a variety of weak excuses for doing this, such as

I was just clearing out some e-mails so I could hit the ground running on Monday morning

Which is bollocks. It’s part of the Sunday “hey look at me” e-mail trail – initiated by the biggest knobs you’ve got and followed-up by the other ambitious Sunday e-mailers who are copying every other fucker in. The aim here is not to actually do anything productive – God forbid, no, we have servants for that. No, it’s to be noticed. The more you’re seen e-mailing on a Sunday, the better your chances are of winning that prized COTM.

So there you go, you should be Colleague of the Month by now, and if you’re lucky, you’ll have received a pat on the back and a week’s use of the Director’s parking space. But you can’t afford a car. Shit.