By Justin Kerr


Surprises are the enemy. MR CORPO explains why there is one exception to this rule and why you should do it today.



How To Surprise Your Boss

 JUSTIN: Oops, I did it again. I played with your heart. Got lost in the game. Oh baby, baby...


(Intro music)


JUSTIN: Hello, and welcome to another episode of the Mr. Corpo podcast. Today we are going to talk about how to surprise your boss. Now, for many and all of my loyal listeners, you're gonna be very surprised by today's topic, because you know I absolutely positively absolutely beyond a shadow of a doubt hate surprises. And you should, too. Surprises are the enemy. Surprises are to be avoided at all costs. And surprises are bad.


In fact, I've spend an inordinate amount of time on the Mr. Corpo podcast teaching you how to avoid surprises. Remember, we talked about how to give your boss a pre-read, so that they have a preview of what's coming, and they're not surprised. We're talked about making sure you have a one-on-one weekly with your boss, so that you can get approvals in advance, avoid any double work, and avoid any surprises. We've also talked about having two to three check-ins during a project, so that you get credit for all of your work, and you avoid that dreaded "how's it going?" catch phrase -- which all the Mr. Corpo listeners know actually means, "I don't trust you."


So for all these reasons and more, I always tell you, "surprises are the enemy." Even if it's bad news, it's better to deliver it -- to give that news rather than save it, hide it, avoid it. No surprises, ever.


So if I've said all that, why in the world is the topic of today's episode "How to Surprise Your Boss?" It's simple. Your boss is a human being.




JUSTIN: Let that sink in for a second. Breathe through this. Your boss is a human being. You see, a funny thing happens on the way to work. You stop being you. You become an employee. Your boss stops being a person, a mother of two, a dad of one, a totally cool guy who likes to drink beer on the weekend, and your boss becomes a boss. And all of a sudden, you treat each other as employee versus boss. You're playing a role. You're treating each other as cogs in this wheel of this corpo world. We lose sight of the fact that we're all human beings. We have feelings. We have hopes. We have dreams. We have insecurities.


So my simple advice today, my simple topic today, is: I want you to go to work and I want you to say something nice to your boss. A specific thank you. A quick acknowledgement that you appreciate everything, or at least something, that your boss has done for you. Now, you can go back to episode 14, which taught everyone how to say thank you. But suffice it to say, send a quick, one-sentence email with the subject, "Thank you." And then just put a one-sentence topic or sentence or whatever you want that just says, "Hey, I just wanted to say thanks for helping me out with this," or, "Hey, what you did for me in that other meeting, I really appreciate it." Or, "Hey, just wanted to randomly say thank you. I really enjoy working with you."


That's it. You're going to surprise your boss. But in a good way. You're gonna re-establish this human to human interaction. You're going to let them know that despite the ups and downs of the day to day, despite everything that's gone on, you just wanted to say thank you, and you appreciate them.


Now, there's a ton of benefits for this. You're creating good will, you're making your boss feel good. They're gonna feel good about you. You're also teaching them how you want to be treated. They're gonna be more likely to thank you in the future if you're willing to thank them. That's it. That's all I want you to do. No excuses, don't put it off until next week, don't listen to this episode and not do anything. I want you to go into work today, I want you to sit at your desk, and I want you to write an email. Write it to your boss. Write it to a co-worker. Write it to an old boss that now, upon reflection, you realize they actually did a good thing for you. Whatever the case may be, at least to one person, surprise them. And say thank you. You'll never regret it. There's no excuse not to do this. Now, go get to work.




JUSTIN: That's all we have for today's episode. But I think it's a powerful, quick call to action. And in other news around the Mr. Corpo podcast world, you can always go to, you can always send us emails at to ask your questions for the Ask Mr. Corpo section. Rob and I just spent an hour brainstorming the future of the Mr. Corpo podcast. We've got a lot of great stuff coming for you. More live streams, new topics, new sonic identities, all new sections, anything and everything's on the table. So if you've got any good ideas, please shoot us a line. Hit us on the social channels at mr_corpo. Hit me at Whatever you want to do, give us your good ideas, cause we want to make this thing really big and really bold. Give us a shout. Thanks for listening.



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