Times are pretty tough at the moment. There is a recession and that means that people are looking to make their business run faster and better. Often that means cutting costs but don’t think that this automatically means that a business will be less likely to hire or keep people. In fact the opposite may well be true. Any business owner will tell you that one of the key steps to success is to have good employees. Employers want good workers who do a good job.
What you need to do is show that you are that good worker. Not a superhuman, or some kind of robotic production line, but a good, solid, reliable worker.
Here are three bad habits and simple changes that may just help you into a permanent position or give you a little nudge up the ladder to a better job.
Bad employee habits
- “It’s just a job”
This is a common attitude and totally wrong. Your job, no matter how it seems to you, is an important part of the business. It must be, because if it really didn’t matter then why would the company throw money away paying someone to do it? No, your job is important and needs to be done well.
Try understanding how the job you do fits into the bigger scheme of things. Find out what happens next? Why is the job needed? Think about the role, could you suggest an improvement to the way you do the job?
Being interested in your job will show you care about it. Besides, it may well actually be that you do a really interesting job and you have just never looked at it.
- “I know what to do, that’s all I need to know”
Why? When you think about it, this is a really odd attitude because you spend eight hours of your day in your job. When we follow our favourite band or support a football team we don’t just say, “It’s just a football team” and leave it at that. We get involved; we enjoy all the additional things that go with being a fan.
Do this with your job and try to find out a little bit more about the business you work for. Who are their competitors? What is the history of the company? If they use twitter or facebook follow them, and see what they are saying to the world. The more interested you become in your employer the more they will become interested in you.
- “It’s not my job to do that”
OK, this may well be true but this makes me really angry when I hear it. As long as you are not being asked to do something that is clearly inappropriate (in which case explain politely why you don’t want to do it) and providing you are not being asked to do things outside the reasonable demands of the job role (in which case tell us because that wasn’t the job you went to do) then why not do it? Experience is really important, the more you know, the more valuable you are.
One final suggestion - be positive. Arriving a few minutes early with the desire to do a good job will most likely get you noticed as that good, solid worker that we talked about.
When it comes down to it most companies are not looking for the cheapest employee, they are looking for the best person for the job.