What sets a successful employee apart from an average one? Here’s a hint: It has nothing to do with what’s on your resume. No matter what industry you work in, a healthy set of work habits can make you an outstanding employee. Set yourself up for success by incorporating these habits into your workday.
1. Stay Positive
Negativity may seem inevitable when you’re between long meetings and strict deadlines. You may even feel doubt about your own abilities, despite evidence of your successes. Regardless, the power of positivity is strong, so use it to your advantage. An optimistic attitude not only improves your mood, but it also increases your productivity. Start this habit by using positive language and finding small successes in any work that you do.
2. Be Professional
There’s value in the work you produce, but how you carry yourself is just as important. Professionalism displays motivation and can boost your reputation. Basic professional behavior can be as easy as arriving on time and dressing for success. Brushing up on your soft skills is another great way to boost your professionalism.
3. Identify Criticism as an Opportunity for Improvement
No one is perfect, so we are bound to . Instead of dismissing errors and critique, use them to learn and grow. Oftentimes, growth can’t occur without helpful feedback. If you make a mistake, acknowledge the problem and work to fix it. Your actions won’t go unnoticed, as employees who take accountability are more credible to their colleagues.
4. Take Initiative
An employee that takes initiative completes tasks with minimal direction from a manager. They are proactive, prepared, and eager to take on new opportunities when they are offered. Taking initiative demonstrates your task management skills and your enthusiasm. It can be as easy as helping a coworker or completing a project that others tend to avoid.
5. Know Your Limits
It’s important to be ambitious, but don’t forget to be realistic about your abilities. It’s okay to say “no” when you feel like you can’t complete a task to your full ability. Don’t be afraid to ask for help if you need it, either. Establishing boundaries can help you produce more quality work without being overwhelmed.
6. Be a Great Listener
Listening sounds easy enough, but it takes more practice than you may think. Instead of listening to respond, try listening to comprehend the information given. Attentive listening signals to your coworkers that you care about their thoughts. Not only does this benefit you, but it also makes your coworkers feel valued and motivated.
7. Build Good Relationships with Your Coworkers
Building rapport with your coworkers is a crucial aspect to working on a productive (and fun) team. Successful employees know that mutual understanding and easy communication leads to stress-free collaboration. Want to get to know your coworkers? Start conversation by asking questions about their work or their other interests. You could even try to get to know your coworkers outside of the office over lunch!
BONUS: Don’t Gossip!
Gossip can quickly destroy the work you’ve done to be a valuable employee. Any conversation of a personal or negative nature can be hurtful, which creates conflict and tanks morale. For this reason, it’s best to steer clear of work gossip. Instead, use your new habits to foster an inclusive work environment!