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Don’t Do These Things in the Workplace

When discussing post-graduation career advice, we generally focus our attention on things you SHOULD do to put yourself in position to succeed. But today we’ll take a different route and discuss what we suggest you DON’T DO in the workplace if you want to have a positive experience and grow within your career field. It’s the same idea – just another point of view.

Check them out:

Don’t skip breaks: Contrary to what you may think, sitting in one place or focusing on a single project for too long can hinder your productivity. Take a walk around the building every once in a while. Or if you’ve found a good stopping place, go fill up your mug of coffee (or better yet, a glass of water) – anything to refresh your body and restore your concentration.

Don’t live in your e-mail: While convenient and usually necessary, e-mail can act as a work inhibitor if it’s relied upon too much. When working over the weekend or during the evenings, yes, go for it. But if available, visit people one-on-one or use the telephone as much as possible. We know you need it for certain situations, though, so plan certain times of the day to check and respond to important messages.

Don’t focus only on money: When you take a job solely for the money, your boss will probably notice. If the paycheck is more important than the work you performed to earn it, work quality is likely to drop. Rather, find a job you’re passionate about and be so invested in great work that your company or organization will do anything to keep you around.

Don’t ignore your talent: Everyone possesses a skill that makes them unique. If there’s a way you can incorporate your personal talent into your everyday job function, make sure you do. That’s how you stand out from the crowd and create room for job growth. Do you have talents and skills you are not taking advantage of (but could)? Speak with your supervisor and come up with a way to use them!

Don’t be a 9 to 5-er: Do you find yourself arriving to work at the last possible second, or are you the first person out the door at the end of the day? This may indicate a lack of passion. Try not to become an employee who only cares that they meet the required number of work hours. Be an employee with a purpose. If you have to work overtime once in a while, it won’t kill you. And your supervisors will recognize the extra effort.

Don’t avoid challenges: The only way we can improve ourselves is to push ourselves further than we’ve gone. Don’t fear tough tasks – embrace them! If you take on something new and struggle through it, that’s OK. At least you put forth the effort and weren’t complacent.

Don’t think too small: Big progress comes from big ideas. Don’t worry – a big idea isn’t necessarily a complex idea. It could just be an idea that creates efficiency or innovation. Company presidents and CEOs aren’t the only people who come up with great stuff. Anyone can! If you have an idea that you think will improve work flow or generate revenue, meet with your manager or supervisor to get the ball rolling!

At Jones College, we know the workplace can be tough, especially as an entry-level employee. But if you take these tips to heart, you can begin building a solid career right from the get-go. And remember – these tips won’t apply to every single situation. For example, you may have days when there’s just no time for a break, or your position may entail spending 75 percent of your time in your e-mail inbox. So don’t be afraid to alter/adjust these guidelines as needed!

Jones graduates – do you have any additional suggestions?


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