5 Ways to Turn Your Career Upside Down

Little Girl Doing HandstandWith all that is riding on many of the moves you make at work each and every day, do you ever stop to wonder if even just one of those actions could turn your career upside down?

As many workers have found out over the years, it just takes one mistake to remove them from their current jobs, then put them on a downward spiral where even getting an interview can seem like a major accomplishment.

So, in order for you to avoid that slippery slope where you could find yourself on the outside looking in when it comes to work, do your best to avoid these five gaffes while on the job:

1. Too social –

Whether through social media or gossiping around the office on a daily basis, being too social can come back to haunt you. While companies do not want someone who is anti-social and lacks people skills, they also don’t want the other extreme. Some employers altogether forbid social media in their offices while work is going on, so don’t think turning to your mobile device is a means to get around various social sites being blocked on the office computer. You should also avoid turning into the head of office gossip, this wherein you can’t help but talk about fellow workers or even the boss;

2. Too unreliable –

Being a few minutes late here and there is not uncommon, but don’t take it to the extreme where you are regularly showing up for work late and/or cutting early too often. If an employer has you scheduled to work 8 to 5, that means being at work and ready to go at 8 a.m., not wandering in at 8:10 or 8:20 once or more each week. The same holds true for leaving early on a regular basis, as bosses will see this as a sign that you can’t wait to get out of there. If you were chosen to take the lead on a presentation or office project (see more below), don’t show up the day it is due unprepared, in essence not doing your homework. Those who are most reliable to their companies most often will reap the rewards moving forward;

3. Too lazy –

While many companies just expect you to work your normal shift in a productive manner, others look for those workers who have that extra drive in them. Whether it means taking the lead on a project or contributing more vocally at the departmental meetings, you can definitely score points for yourself by not being the lazy one in the office. Show that initiative that gave your employer the idea to hire you in the first place, vindicating their decision to bring you on. Even if you think what you have to say or do is not that important to the company, speak up and act on your ideas;

4. Too confrontational –

Even though there is absolutely nothing wrong with you sticking up for yourself at work, don’t be the guy or gal who has to question everything on a regular basis. Bosses will soon tire of the individual who questions why they are being asked to do this or that, why they can’t do it their way, and why they have to go along with everyone else. If you have an idea that you think will better the task you are given, by all means give it. If you don’t, then keep quiet and do what was asked of you;

5. Too ungrateful –

Last but not least, don’t be the individual who takes his or her job for granted. There are millions of people out there who would love to be working on a regular basis, meaning your job can typically be filled quicker than you think. Be appreciative of the fact that you have a job in today’s economy, meaning you show up and give 100 percent each and every day. If you come to work with an attitude of you deserve to be there, you could find yourself one of those people looking for a job sooner rather than later.

Given your career experience to date, what mistake or mistakes have you seen take place where you’ve worked?

About the Author: With 23 years’ writing experience, Dave Thomas covers career and business topics for a variety of websites, including Reputation.com.

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