How often during your workday are you distracted? Whether it’s due to other work related tasks, unexpected meetings or visitors, or even of a personal nature you’re probably not being as productive in your typical day as you really could be. Have a quick read over some commonly made fatal mistakes to gain perhaps some perspective.
How many do you identify with? Grab a scrap of paper and create a numbered list 1-5. For each item below, that you identify with, write a “1”, each item you don’t write a “0”.
1. Forgetting The 1 Most Important Thing
In the course of a typical day, priorities get shuffled around repeatedly. A phone will ring, a co-worker will stop by your cubicle to take a break, your boss or supervisor will need an additional report, and he’ll need it RIGHT NOW!
TIP: Assign yourself 1 assignment or task to complete each day. Write it down and make sure that no matter how crazy the day gets, complete the task!
You can get many things wrong, but if you get the most important things right, you’ll still be seen as a value to the company.
2. Not Understanding the Company’s Goals, Procedures or Products
Regardless of where you work throughout your career, you’ll be provided with an employee handbook or policies and procedures guidebook. You’re usually required to sign a statement saying you received, read, and agree to the terms of employment as they are defined within these manuals.
HINT: It’s everyone’s responsibility to understand the most crucial goals of their company, the products they sell or carry, the tasks you’re responsible for, and the best way to accomplish the goals you’re provided.
3. Not Making Yourself Instrumental
If you were fired tomorrow, would the company experience any major disruption or difficulty? Failure to complete assignments timely, accurately, or at all will obviously represent an inefficient worker to a business.
HINT: If the answer is “No” you’re setting yourself up to be replaced!
You may face workplace reprimands or consequences including warnings, write-ups, poor performance reviews, decreased probability of promotions, or suspension or termination. With each infraction, you’re making yourself more replaceable.
4. Forgetting The Customer
The biggest workplace blunder across all industries, regardless of the size of the business, number of employees, or its revenue.
TIP: When arriving at work daily, strive to remain customer-centric focused and you can’t go wrong. If customers are dropping your name during surveys or support calls, or perhaps while dealing with another employee, you want them to hold you in high regard, and be singing your praises not filing complaints.
5. Assuming No One is Gauging Your Performance & Not Staying On Top of Your Industry
Just because you haven’t heard anything negative from your superiors, doesn’t mean they think you’re doing a good job.
HINT: Co-workers and customers are always talking about your performance, set and maintain your own set of high standards, b honest with yourself and make improvements where they are warranted.
TIP: Dedicate a minimum of 30 – 60 minutes each day to catching up on the latest news, trends, innovative solutions, and the most advanced methods of performing your job, or reducing costs or economical waste for your industry.
Your ideas may not be implemented, but your superiors will know that you value your position and understand the changes that will be coming within your niche market, which allows you to offer new ideas and perspectives, giving you some additional value within the company. Possibly a promotion!
Now that you’ve assessed yourself in these common workplace errors, add up the number of 1’s, and see the results below:
0 – 1 – Congratulations, You’re an employer’s dream employee!
(Or a big fat liar that’s out of touch with reality!)
2 – 3 – Nice Job! You now know where you can make improvements
(“WOW!” Your employer again!)
4 – 5 – Needs Improvement… LOTS of improvement!
(…Or Begin Seeking Other Employment!)